[Action required] API changes announcement for existing customers

Note: This announcement applies to API customers that are registered to a Prototype and Developer plans.

Hello all!

We are writing to inform you that a new set of plans is replacing our current application plans (Prototype and Developer plans) and prices.

As of 10th May 2022, the Prototype and Developer plans will no longer be operational. Oxford Dictionaries API will offer two new plans:

- Introductory plan
- Unlimited plan

For Prototype and Developer plan customers, changes are happening between 12th April 2022 and 10th May 2022. So do not worry! You will have time to check the options and choose how you wish to proceed using our data by selecting the Introductory or Unlimited plan.

For further instructions on how to change plans, and for more information, please visit our new plans announcement page.

Link: https://developer.oxforddictionaries.com/new-plans-announcement

If you have any questions, please feel free to leave us a comment or reach us at our Contact Us page. (https://developer.oxforddictionaries.com/contact-us)

The Oxford dictionaries API team

How are synonyms ordered?

Apologies if this is answered somewhere in your documentation.

When I use the Thesaurus endpoint, the synonyms are returned in a particular non-alphabetical order. How is the order decided; is it based on the closeness of the match?


  • SimoneSimone Administrator admin

    Hi @lintaylor
    Oh, sorry I could not get back to you yesterday - let me find out for you, so bear with me, please! :)

  • AmosDuveenAmosDuveen Member, Administrator, Moderator admin

    Hi @lintaylor,

    I think the best answer I can give is a rather unsatisfactory "sort of". The source for the synonym data (the Oxford Thesaurus of English, OTE) has bandings so that the words in the first banding are the closest match, the second banding contains slightly more distant words and the third banding contains words which are somewhat further removed. However, there is (currently) no place for this distinction in the JSON data model we output from the API so that granularity has been lost in translation.

    However, the order of the synonyms has been maintained so that you can say, in a very general way, that the further up they appear the closer they match the headword but it would be wrong to say that this was an absolute rule. Given the way language is constantly changing and evolving, as well as all of the complexity of regional variation, it would be rather disingenuous to give any more certain answer.

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