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An Index of Labels by Region, Usage, and Etymology to DARE

Have you ever speculated on what could be considered "Illinois words," or even "Chicago words"? Would you like to know what words are used particularly frequently among women or Black speakers of American English? Were you wondering what borrowings from Russian or Polish are used in American English? Are you looking for examples of rhotacism or ellipsis to use in your class?

We've made it easy to find the answers to these and similar questions. The above title may sound like a 19th-century work, but it is actually a  recent one that will save you the trouble of sifting through DARE for the answers to such questions. This Index lists all states, cities, and other geographical regions, as well as social and usage labels, etymological processes, and languages mentioned in the head sections of DARE entries. The small sample page below from the first Index, covering volumes I and II, shows, for example, those words used in Idaho, Illinois (both the whole state and Chicago specifically), and Indiana; those from Igbo (an African language) or from American Indian languages; and words that are formed by imitation, contain an infix, or are generally used informally. Following each headword is the label as a whole as it appears in DARE. Links to the entire index are located at the bottom of this page.

You cannot, of course, use the Index without DARE, for the meanings of the terms are not given in the Index. And you must keep in mind that words used in Illinois, for example, are also used in larger regions which subsume Illinois: the state is included in the regions labeled North Central and Upper Mississippi Valley as well as Mississippi-Ohio Valleys. And parts of Illinois are included in the regions labeled North, North Midland, South Midland, and Great Lakes. For a full list of regions and their respective states go to Index Regions.

Sample Page of Letter I:


The Index for volumes I to V:

The combined index for the five volumes of DARE can be viewed. To go directly to a particular index term, go to  Index & Terms; cross-references are included, as well as suggestions of similar but not totally synonymous terms. (Please be patient as it begins at 'A' before jumping to your selected term.)

And if looking for terms used in a particular geographical region, do keep in mind the many categories under which the region may be categorized, both large and small, as exemplified above.



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