Labels, shown in italics, are used to indicate contextual information about the classification and usage of words.
Types of labels
Currency labels, such as historical, obsolete etc., are used to indicate words relating to particular historical contexts or no longer in current usage.
Frequency labels, such as rare, indicate if a word is commonly used.
Specialist subject labels, such as Law, Geology and Wagon-making, mark the vocabulary of specialised domains.
Register labels, such as slang, colloquial, jocular etc., give an indication of appropriate usage in relation to particular formal and informal social contexts. Lables of Attitude, derogatory and offensive, are used to mark words that detract from the character or standing of a person or group of people and may cause offence.
Geographical labels, often nested in notes, indicate regional usage or derivation of a headword or subheadword from another language or variety of English.
Grammar labels give information about grammatical characteristics or indicate when these deviate from the general norm, for example noncount, passive, predicative etc.
Other labels such as figurative, transferred, elliptical, and nonce also give information about the contextual usage of terms.
In cases where more than one label may apply to a headword, currency labels precede labels indicating specialist domains; these are followed by labels of attitude, register and frequency.
Position of labels
A label which informs all senses follows the initial part(s) of speech at the headword; one which informs a single sense precedes that sense. Some labels are found in notes while others are nested in or follow immediately after definitions.