Roget's Thesaurus

@worldwise1 (14887)
United States
April 20, 2008 11:21am CST
I have never been overly curious about the man who compiled Roget's Thesaurus, so I was surprised to learn more about him while listening to a radio show last night. His name was Peter Mark Roget and he was born in the late 1700s. He was trained in the medical profession. His family history is one of the most amazing things about Roget because it seems that mental illness plagued members of his family. He himself suffered from severe depression which led to his compiling the thesaurus. He has been called the man who made lists. He saw much tragedy in his life and it is believed that his drive to create order in his life is the only thing that saved him from madness. Roget lived about 90 years, and died in Paris during the late 1800s. I have often used the Roget's Thesaurus because it is an invaluable tool for anyone who is in the writing field. How about you? Do you use Roget's Thesaurus?
7 responses
@Tetchie (2933)
• Australia
20 Apr 08
Thanks for giving this short bio. I use a thesaurus because of my inquisitiveness. sometimes when I use a dictionary I get carried away and end up in a totally different world than the one I started from. Words lead to words which lead to other words which lead to many many more words. Sounds like Roget was an obsessive compulsive. I'm glad he went to the trouble to create a thesaurus for us and didn't end up going mad in the process.
2 people like this
@GardenGerty (111074)
• United States
20 Apr 08
They laughed at me in school for reading the reference books. I still will do it. Including the Thesaurus.
@Tetchie (2933)
• Australia
21 Apr 08
Good to know I'm not the only nutter! LOL.
@worldwise1 (14887)
• United States
28 Apr 08
There just might be an entire society of us , Tetchie, who do not cower at the idea of picking up a reference book.
@carolbee (16233)
• United States
20 Apr 08
Your research is very interesting. Yes, I have used the Thesaurus and will once in awhile when online. It's been a helpful tool over the years when I've been searching for another word when my mind is blank. Thanks for posting this discussion.
2 people like this
@worldwise1 (14887)
• United States
28 Apr 08
The thesaurus is an invaluable tool, carolbee, for anyone who writes, or is just interested in words.
@GardenGerty (111074)
• United States
20 Apr 08
I seem to be blessed with a good vocabulary, and seldom need a Thesaurus. Is there anything other than one by Roget? That is an interesting bit of info. that you shared. Was he also obsessive/compulsive? It would be a huge undertaking, and it is one that has immortalized him.
1 person likes this
@worldwise1 (14887)
• United States
28 Apr 08
I have also been blessed with a very good vocabulary, GG, and it has served me well throughout my life. Being o/c myself, I can understand that Roget was a classic example of this behavior. I don't know if he was even aware of how much this thing would grow when he first got started.
1 person likes this
@GardenGerty (111074)
• United States
4 May 08
When I start building on something and it gets bigger and bigger I tell my family that I am making an elephant out of it.
@winterose (39914)
• Canada
21 Apr 08
It just goes to show that even if you are down on your luck, depressed, or plagued with other issues, you can turn those issues into bettering yourself and making a successful life.
1 person likes this
@worldwise1 (14887)
• United States
28 Apr 08
So true, winterose! It is hard to imagine the amount of dogged determination this man had.
@whittby (3073)
• United States
21 Apr 08
Nowadays I use thesaurus.com when I get stuck on a word and just know I'll have to find it because, well because I have to use it and not another word will do. I had Roget's with me all through school. It's interesting, I used to drag it out when my kids were doing writing assignments, but it was so hard to get them to use it. My oldest finally caught up with the love of words in grad school, so I have at least one...
1 person likes this
@worldwise1 (14887)
• United States
28 Apr 08
I think there are people who love words, whittby, and those who couldn't care less. I feel very fortunate to number among the former. I began doing crossword puzzles almost from the time I learned to read and my love for word puzzles has never decreased to this day.
@whiteheron (4223)
• United States
20 Apr 08
I have used it in the past but have not used it recently. I never knew anything about its creator. Thanks for sharing this information... It is wonderful how this man turned his compulsive love of lists into something that many writers use to this day.
1 person likes this
@worldwise1 (14887)
• United States
28 Apr 08
I thought it was awesome, whiteheron, that he was able to take control of his life in such a way.
@stephcjh (32327)
• United States
28 Sep 08
I have never heard of it before or used it. I thank you for sharing the information with me though.