In the context of this dictionary, a definition is the single most important or useful perspective on the meaning of a word or term. This approach ignores practical lexicography.
Definitions provide clarity or insight for a specific group of people; as such definitions are business assets.
These can be either explicit definitions, such as this one, or explorations of meaning that form de facto definitions, such as this essay on ‘strategy’.
Outside the context of this dictionary, a definition:
- is theoretically the objective, true meaning of a word (which doesn’t actually exist, of course)
- a list of the most common meanings attached to a word through usage, as determined through lexicographic research (so rarely a single meaning)
- may not exist in writing but can still be a part of one’s lexicon
"What we call definitions are not definitions, they're just hints. If you take the OED, the one you read with a magnifying glass, and they give you a very long definition of a word. But they're not really definitions, they are just hints that a person who already knows the concept can use to understand what's really going on"
- Noam Chomsky