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  1. #21
    Harry Smith's Avatar
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    Default Re: Active and Passive Vocabulary

    Quote Originally Posted by Tdol View Post
    I read that Shakespeare and Churchill used the widest vocabularies of English writers.
    I had a lecturer at the university who had been teaching me for two years. His active vocabulary was the widest for me. Hr was a kind of "walking dictionary". I was writing down words from dictionaries and asking him. He had always a translation for those words in Armenian. Of course later I found out that he spoke 8 foreign languages fluently.
    As to writers they have to have a large vocabulary. By the way you wrote the names of two people who have played an important role in my life. The desire of reading Shakespeare in the original took me to the university.I just wanted to learn English to read English classics in the original. My dream was to become a lawyer. And whenever I have a little free time I like reading speeches of Churchil and Abraham Lincoln. I'm trying to read the speeches of George Bush but sometimes I see mistakes in his speeches. ( Maybe my English is not so good).

  2. #22
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    Default Re: Active and Passive Vocabulary

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeNewYork View Post
    I can live with that estimate, particularly for the lower end of native speakers. The higher end is anybody's guess. I knew Tony Randall, the actor. He was one of the most well-spoken men I have ever talked with. He was on the usage panel of American Heritage Dictionary. Speaking with him was an endless vocabulary lesson.
    A friend of mine, who is teaching at the Moscow Linguistics University, told me that acording to the programme their students have to know 15000 words after graduating from the university. Of course their passive vocabulary can be twice larger.

  3. #23
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    Default Re: Active and Passive Vocabulary

    Quote Originally Posted by Harry Smith View Post
    A friend of mine, who is teaching at the Moscow Linguistics University, told me that acording to the programme their students have to know 15000 words after graduating from the university. Of course their passive vocabulary can be twice larger.
    That doesn't surprise me. University students are exposed to entire new vocabularies in various courses and fields. I was trained as a veterinarian. During my training, I picked up thousands of new words in medicine, animal production, genetics, biochemistry, nutrition, physics, biology, etc.
    Last edited by MikeNewYork; 11-Nov-2006 at 21:51.

  4. #24
    Harry Smith's Avatar
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    Default Re: Active and Passive Vocabulary

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeNewYork View Post
    That doesn't surprise me. University students are exposed to entire new vocabularies in various courses and fields. I was trained as a veterienatian. During my training, I picked up thoudsands of new words in medicine, animal production, genetics, biochemistry, nutrition, physics, biology, etc.
    Are these words still with you?

  5. #25
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    Default Re: Active and Passive Vocabulary

    Here's a little vocabulary test. See how you get on

    English Vocabulary Tester

  6. #26
    Harry Smith's Avatar
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    Default Re: Active and Passive Vocabulary

    Quote Originally Posted by curmudgeon View Post
    Here's a little vocabulary test. See how you get on

    English Vocabulary Tester
    My score isn't very high, a little hidger than college students have. Anyway, thanks for the tester. It helped me much. I'd like to know your score as I'm very interested in native speakers vocabulary. I just want to improve my vocabulary. I'm afraid I can learn far more words.

  7. #27
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    Default Re: Active and Passive Vocabulary

    Hi, glad it helped. I score more than 40 in each section which suggests graduate level. I have trouble with the last two columns, there are lots of words there I've never heard of.

  8. #28
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    Default Re: Active and Passive Vocabulary

    Quote Originally Posted by Harry Smith View Post
    Are these words still with you?
    Many of them -- yes.

  9. #29
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    Default Re: Active and Passive Vocabulary

    Quote Originally Posted by curmudgeon View Post
    Hi, glad it helped. I score more than 40 in each section which suggests graduate level. I have trouble with the last two columns, there are lots of words there I've never heard of.
    I was surprised by how many medical terms were on the test. Of course that helped me.

  10. #30
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    Default Re: Active and Passive Vocabulary

    Yes, and what appear to be surnames.

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