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A 'gumbo' is a spicy okra-based stew, it also means a particular kind of mud; it is one of the few Bantu (African) words that has become part of the English language, itself a gumbo of a language.

The site is primarily an archive of public domain and redistributable language learning resources. We are also developing special content for the site which will be of interest to language learners, travelers, linguists, and other language aficionados.

There are many sites on the Internet with interactive dictionaries and language learning aids; there are also several freeware dictionary/flashcard programs with extensive vocabulary sets. However, in most cases, these sites shroud their data sets in binary or database formats. At Wordgumbo we've done the hard work of converting these data sets into flat files and posting them in one convenient archive, organized by language family.

Files here are either HTML or extended (8-bit) ASCII. Where possible, text files are tab delimited. Some files have been converted into standard HTML encoding (ISO-8859-1) from Unicode. The closest equivalent character in ISO-8859-1 was selected, and any diacritics simulated using <SUB> and <SUP> and the closest equivalent punctuation mark. In the case of Cyrillic, Greek and Hebrew, a consistent transliteration scheme was used. The source for each file contains hidden tags which specify the Unicode value for each character which has no ISO-8859-1 equivalent. To obtain these values, you can download the file or view its source in your browser. The tags have the form <!u XXXX>character</!u>, where XXXX is the four digit hexadecimal value of the Unicode character.

Some of the material on this site may be copyrighted; we ask that you respect these copyrights by only using it for academic 'fair use'. This includes files labled as 'freeware data'. Files which are copyrighted will be clearly indicated as such. Commercial use of the copyrighted material at this site may be restricted. Other files are clearly in the public domain and can be used for any purpose. These files will be identified as such.

We encourage you to visit our sister site The Internet Sacred Text Archive (, which has a comprehensive collection of public domain religious texts. We have provided cross-links to related content at sacred-texts where relevant.

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The special contents of this page are © 2005 J.B. Hare, all rights reserved.