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    as well as new items, was obtained from Mr J. U. Egharevba, the author
of a short history of Benin in the vernacular,^1 and some items, from
Mr J. E. Edegbe, translator and interpreter of the Church Missionary
Society at Benin City. During my second stay in Nigeria, I worked
through the first proofs of this Dictionny with Mr Amadasu and
Mr S. Obayuwana.

    Some words have been taken from publications of the Church
Missionary Society, mainly from the Communion Service (quoted as
Akugbe) and the Gospel of St Mark.

    A certain number of important names have been included, and these
as well as titles, praise-names, etc. have been written with a capital so
as to stand out more clearly. Names composed of other words contained
in the dictionary have not been entered under their respective headings
but are given as separate items, e.g. Iʋi‿eze (cf. oʋi “child”).

    The collection of words contained in this dictionary is by no means
exhaustive. Gaps will be found especially among the following groups:

    1. Nouns of action of the type uverbal stemʋ̃ɛ, e.g. ukɔʋ̃ɛ [ ˩ \ ˩ ]
“planting”, which apparently can be formed from every verb but do
not seem always to be in use.

    2. Composite nouns consisting of prefix+(ɔ- denoting noun-agents,
i- nouns of action, u- things, often tools, etc.)+verbal stemobject, with
all syllables on low tones irrespective of their original tones, e.g. ɔmaxe
[ ˩ ˩ ˩ ] “potter”, from ma [ ˥ ] and axe [ ˩ ˥ ] ; itẽrhã [ ˩ ˩ ˩ ] “tree-felling”,
from tɔ̃ [ ˥ ] and erhã [ ˩ ˥ ] ; ugbĩnamɛ [ ˩ ˩ ˩ ˩ ] “umbrella”, from gbĩna
[ ˩ ˥ ] and amɛ [ ˩ ˩ ] . They seem to be formed very freely though probably
certain combinations are not in use.

    3. Nouns derived from more than one verb, e.g. iyayi [ ˩ ˥ ˦ ] “faith”,
from ya [ ˥ ] and yi [ ˥ ].

    All these formations have been entered as far as they have come to
the author’s notice, and it is hoped that students of the language will
find no difficulty in determining the meaning of new words of these
types by tracing their constituent elements. The same method is
advised in the case of verbal combinations which are not found in the

    Etymological references, indicated by cf., are intended to elucidate
the derivation and composition of words as well as the sources of loan-
words. For the tones of loan-words the following works have been
consulted―Ibo: Dr I. C. Ward, Introduction to the Ibo Language, and
R. F. G. Adams, A Modern Ibo Grammar. Hausa: G. P. Bargery,
^1 Ekherhe Vbe Ebe Itan Edo, 2nd edition, C. M. S., Benin City, 1934, quoted as
Egh. Hist. Also in English as A Short History of Benin, by J. U. Egharevba, 1936,
Church Missionary Society Bookshop, Lagos.

    Recently, a short Bini-Yoruba-English vocabulary has been published by the
same author, but since I obtained a copy of it only when this dictionary was in
the press, I have not included any words from it here.