Date: 1500-1600
Language: French
Origin: vocabulaire, from Medieval Latin vocabularium, from Latin vocabulum 'word, name', from vocare; VOCATION


vo‧cab‧u‧la‧ry plural vocabularies
1 [uncountable and countable]SL 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 [countable]SLL all the words in a particular language:
English has the largest vocabulary of any language.
3 [uncountable and countable]SL the words that are typically used when talking about a particular subject:
Most technical jobs use a specialized vocabulary.
vocabulary of
the vocabulary of politics
4 [uncountable and countable] the range of possible features, effects, actions etc, especially in a type of music or art
vocabulary of
Charlie Parker expanded the vocabulary of jazz.

(the word) failure/guilt/compromise etc is not in somebody's vocabulary

used to say that someone never thinks of accepting failure etc
6 [countable]SLLTCN old-fashioned a list of words with explanations of their meanings, especially in a book for learning a foreign language