Headings from Roget's International Thesaurus

The Roget's Thesaurus was first published in 1852. The 1911 thesaurus was organized in a quasi-hierarchical fashion, with six top categories (Abstract Relations; Space; Matter; Intellect; Volition; and Affections) branching in a shallow tree to about 1050 headwords, all nouns. In many cases the underlying concept of a headword might more appropriately have been categorized as a verb or adjective, but the classification proceeded from the nominalized forms.

The original classification scheme was retained essentially unchanged through the fourth edition of 1977 which had 8 top categories.
Class 1:
Abstract Relations
 I.   Existence
 II.  Relation
 III. Quantity
 IV.  Order
 V.   Number
 VI.  Time
 VII. Change
 IX.  Causation
 X.   Power
Class 2: Space
 I.   Space In General
 II.  Dimensions
 III. Structure; Form
 IV.  Motion
Class 3: Physics
 I.   Physics
 II.  Heat
 III. Light
 IV.  Electricity and
 V.   Mechanics
 VI.  Physical Properties
 VII. Color
Class 4: Matter
I.    Matter In General
II.  Inorganic Matter
III. Organic Matter
Class 5: Sensation
I.    Sensation In General
II.  Touch
III. Taste
IV.  Smell
V.   Sight
VI.  Hearing
Class 6: Intellect
I.    Intellectual Faculties
     and Processes
II.  States Of Mind
III. Communication Of Ideas
Class 7: Volition
I.    Volition In General
II.  Conditions
III. Voluntary Action
IV.  Authority; Control
V.   Support And Opposition
VI.  Possess
IV.  Relations
Class 8: Affections
I.    Personal Affections
II.  Sympathetic Affections
III. Morality
IV.  Religion
The fifth edition, published in 1992, modified the classification scheme, eliminating the middle two levels and listing everything under 15 top categories.
The sixth eddition was published in 2002.
Class 1 - The Body And The Senses
Class 2 - Feelings        
Class 3 - Place And Changes Of Place
Class 4 - Measure And Shape
Class 5 - Living Things
Class 6 - Natural Phenomena
Class 7 - Behavior And Will
Class 8 - Language
Class 9 - Human Society And Institutions
Class 10 - Values And Ideals
Class 11 - Arts
Class 12 - Occupations And Crafts
Class 13 - Sports And Amusements
Class 14 - The Mind And Ideas
Class 15 - Science And Technology

The Websters New World Roget's A-Z Thesaurus, 1997, has 6 categories:
1. Abstract Concepts
2. Spatial Concepts
3. Physical and material Concepts

4. Human Intellect
5. Human Personality and Actions
6. Human Emotions and Beliefs

MICRA, Inc. Used the fourth edition of Roget's International Thesaurus as a basis in construction of a lexicon for natural language understanding, we are preparing a hierarchical semantic network using the Roget's thesaurus as a starting database. This work was undertaken because examination of the Roget shows that there are semantic relations considered important for linguistic expression which are not defined in other publicly available semantic networks, such as WordNet.
See: An Investigation of the Semantic Relations in the Roget's Thesaurus: Preliminary Results

MICRA, Inc. is a small corporation in New Jersey primarily concerned with building lexical databases for use in Natural Language Understanding.

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last updated 23 July 2006