Javanese English Dictionary

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Periplus Editions (HK) Limited, 2002 - Foreign Language Study - 824 pages
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This is the most complete and and up–to–date Javanese dictionary available.

Javanese is the second most widely used language of the Indonesian archipelago, being spoken by some one hundred million people. It also has a rich literary tradition, comprising not only written texts but also forms of theatrical performance—notably the wayang (shadow puppetry), which preserves complex Hindu narratives from the pre–Islamic period. Twentieth–century Javanese writers have used the forms of the novel, free verse and short story to develop a contemporary literature for its vivid expression and realism. The Javanese–English Dictionary is the only reference source to provide a complete listing, with clear English translations and explanations, of all current terms used in modern Javanese. It covers the whole vocabulary needed both for everyday communication and in order to read published materials, and is a resource long needed by language scholars, students of Javanese history and society and visitors with an interest in the traditional culture of Java. With more than 25,000 headwords, it also includes local forms likely to be encountered in travel, specialist terms associated with the traditional arts of the area and obsolete words still to be found in literature.

The dictionary also contains clear explanations of Javanese culture, folklore and religious practices. Users will gain an insight into traditional Javanese cuisine, costume, crafts and the performing arts, and will be able to identify local flora and fauna. It also offers full coverage of idiomatic phrases such as, kalah cacak menang cacak, "Try to do something by trial and error," and proverbial expressions such as, nututi barang wis tiba, "To shut the stable door after the horse has bolted."

A significant feature of Javanese is the existence of distinct language levels, whereby many common words have variants that must be used in situations of social distance, and full cross–reference are given between the terms appropriate to each level. Javanese also has an interesting system of word construction, whereby a range of forms can be derived from one base word; these are listed together under one heading to give a clearer picture of the meanings, and cross–references are used whenever the base form is not really apparent. Highlights of Javanese–English Dictionary are:
  • Completely new and up–to date
  • Contains more than 25,000 heard words with clear definitions.
  • Extensive examples of usage.
  • Information on Javanese culture and history.
  • Unique Javanese idioms and expressions.
  • Special treatment of the unique elements Javanese grammar and syntax.

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About the author (2002)

Stuart Robson has many years' experience teaching languages in various universities. He has written several books, including "Instant Indonesian."
Prateep Changchit is currently teaching Thai to the Australian Federal Police in Melbourne, and has produced teaching kits for English teachers in Bangkok.

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