Centered Dots and Hyphenation

This dictionary shows you how to divide words for two distinct purposes: for end-of-line division by the use of centered dots in the entry word, and second, for syllabification by the use of hyphens in the pronunciations.

The boldface centered dots in entries indicate the acceptable places to put a hyphen when the word is divided at the end of a line. For example, the dots in the entry in*ter*con*ti*nen*tal indicate that the word may be broken at the end of a line as follows:


It is customary to avoid dividing a word so that a single letter is left at the end of one line or the beginning of the next line. For this reason this dictionary does not show any division in such words as eject, away, and lily.

It is very important to understand that the dots that show end-of-line division do not always separate the syllables of a word. Syllables are shown only in the pronunciation, explained in the next section.

In the case of homographs, the divisions are usually indicated only in the first homograph. The divisions shown in the first homograph apply to all the following homographs.

2master adj
3master vb

A word in a compound made up of two or more separate words is divided only when no individual entry exists for that word.

Dew*ey decimal classificationn
diabetes mel*li*tusn
ha*be*as cor*pusn
There are no separate entries for Dewey, mellitus, habeas, or corpus.

This dictionary also uses a special double hyphen  ̷ ̷ at the end of a line when the word being broken is usually spelled with a hyphen at that point. For example, at the entry duckbill on page 241 the word in italics is broken at the end of the first line with a double hyphen so as to show that the word is spelled duck-billed platypus and not duckbilled platypus.