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Last Updated: Friday July 01 2005 15:35 GMT

Potter helps kids learn new words

The front cover of the next Harry Potter book
A new dictionary is using Harry Potter and other top kids' book titles to help children with reading and writing.

Puzzling words like insolent - meaning rude and insulting - are explained, in this case using Potter's rival Draco Malfoy as an example.

The Oxford Primary Dictionary features hundreds of quotes from books by authors including JK Rowling, Philip Pullman, Roald Dahl and CS Lewis.

The 2005 edition of the word reference book is out in July.


Potter books were chosen to help illustrate words because they use straightforward and descriptive language which helps you quickly understand the sentence the word is used in.

For example, the dictionary describes the word "lounge" as meaning "to sit or stand in a relaxed or lazy way" and uses a quote which describes Sirius Black "lounging in his chair at his ease, tilting back on two legs".

Experts hope the dictionary will help children improve their reading, writing and understanding of language.

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