The Oxford English Corpus (OEC) consisted mainly of websites chosen in the way of presenting all types of English, from literary novels to everyday newspapers and the language of blogs and even social media. Besides UK and US English there are Englishes from Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, the Caribbean, Canada, India, Singapore, and South Africa. The last version of this corpus contains nearly 2.1 billion words (almost 2.5 billion tokens).

For more information visit Oxford Dictionaries’s website.

The corpus is supplied by Oxford University Press.

OED Access Policy

Access restricted unless special permission granted.

Permission from Oxford University Press is required to get access to the corpus. Researchers may contact Include information about you and your research project. Please add a note you would like to access the corpus in Sketch Engine, including your user name in Sketch Engine. (This is a manual process that may take several days.)

Available tools

A complete set of tools is available to work with this English corpus to generate:

  • word sketch – English collocations categorized by grammatical relations
  • thesaurus – synonyms and similar words for every word
  • word lists – lists of English nouns, verbs, adjectives etc. organized by frequency
  • n-grams – frequency list of multi-word units
  • concordance – examples in context
  • trends– diachronic analysis automatically identifies neologisms and changes in use


v3 (February 2012)

  • “OEC + Biwec build v2” – size 2.073 billion words


  • 2012-03-08 encoded, word sketches
  • 2011-04-05 doc.wordcount

v2 (January 2011)

  • size 2.008 billion words


  • 2010-11-02 encoded, word sketches
  • 2011-03-05 doc.wordcount

v1 (2009)

  • size 1.736 billion words


  • 2010-03-15 encoded
  • 2010-04-01 word sketches
  • 2011-03-05 doc.wordcount

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Sketch Engine offers a range of tools to work with this English Corpus.


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