- This glossary consists of 351 entry terms
defined in English, German, French, Spanish, Italian and Portuguese.
Whenever relevant, the following may be found in any of the
six languages: variants, correlated terms, derived terms and
a linguistic note, English technical note and/or a figure.
- For a given concept, in each language, entry terms
are those considered the most accurate and widely accepted.
They are not necessarily terms recommended in everyday language
or specialised dictionaries, but the ones which are the most
relevant to tree-ring studies.
- Entry terms are listed in their fully developed rather than
abbridged form, except if the abbreviation is more frequently
used than the full form, as in "PDB" and "SMOW".
The spelling and usage rules are those used in Great Britain
for the English key terms, France for the French, Switzerland
for the German, Spain for Spanish and Brazil for the Portuguese.
Variants, synonyms, near-synonyms
- Variants include all the other written or oral forms
that we are aware of (oral forms are often neologisms that
turn into authorized written forms).
- The local variants for Austria [A], Germany [D], Québec
[Qu], Switzerland [CH], American English [US], United Kingdom
[UK], Commonwealth [Cw], Argentina [Ar] are mentioned whenever
- Variants include obsolete (†) and deprecated
(#) terms, near-synonyms (≈), i.e. terms with meanings
almost equivalent or equivalent in some contexts only, and
true synonyms (=), i.e. terms with equivalent meanings in
whatever context (true synonyms are rare!).
- Correlated terms are terms semantically
correlated to the entry term. They include cross-references
referring to other entry terms, and secondary terms, most of
which are mentioned or succintly defined within the immediate
context of the entry term, i.e. in the definition itself or
in the linguistic and technical notes.
For reasons of space and clarity, cross-references to entry
terms are mentioned only once, in English. Secondary terms are
mentioned in their original language where they were provided.
- As already mentioned, the linguistic notes
provide information on particular uses in a given language (as
compared to English). They also gives information useful to
translators, for example phraseological usage, troublesome use
of prepositions, and any other non-technical information specific
to a given language.
- Information that goes beyond the scope
of a definition but is still useful, especially to students,
is given in a technical note, together with international symbols.
Due to space restriction the technical notes appear in English
- When selecting terms for inclusion, we
have given priority to those specific to dendrochronology, and
in particular to neologisms, including recent neologisms already
used in the literature or in everyday laboratory practice and
proposed neologisms coined for this glossary.
- For each entry term, only the source of
the original (usually the English) definition is cited, since
the definitions in the other languages are in principle faithful
When no source is mentioned, the original definition was provided
by one of the collaborators,
or combined from several oral and/or written
Equivalences between languages
- Our primary objective was to provide consensual
definitions. All definitions were first worded in English by
synthesising information from all available sources. Our collaborators
were then asked to translate each definition in their own language
and to fit an appropriate key term, when it existed, or to propose
a neologism if relevant, as well as variants, correlated and
derived terms. Some adjustments had then to be made, since the
translation process revealed inconsistencies or inexactitudes
in the original English version.
Differences between languages
- When different meanings were highlighted
between languages, the general rule was to give a close translation
of the English definition and a linguistic note to warn readers
against the different uses. The justification for this approach
is that most of the scientific literature is usually in English,
and that non-native English readers or authors of articles in
English may not be aware of differences with their own scientific