- vo|cab|u|la|ry [vəˈkæbjuləri, vəu- US -leri, vou-] n plural vocabularies[Date: 1500-1600; : French; Origin: vocabulaire, from Medieval Latin vocabularium, from Latin vocabulum 'word, name', from vocare; VOCATION]1.) [U and C]all the words that someone knows or uses▪ Reading is one of the best ways of improving your vocabulary.▪ He has a wide vocabulary .active vocabulary(=the words someone can use)passive vocabulary(=the words someone can understand, but does not use)2.)all the words in a particular language▪ English has the largest vocabulary of any language.3.) [U and C]the words that are typically used when talking about a particular subject▪ Most technical jobs use a specialized vocabulary.vocabulary of▪ the vocabulary of politics4.) [U and C]the range of possible features, effects, actions etc, especially in a type of music or artvocabulary of▪ Charlie Parker expanded the vocabulary of jazz.5.) (the word) failure/guilt/compromise etc is not in sb's vocabularyused to say that someone never thinks of accepting failure etc6.) old-fashioned a list of words with explanations of their meanings, especially in a book for learning a foreign language
Dictionary of contemporary English. 2013.