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Concord > collocation
What's a "collocate"?
Collocates are the words which occur in the neighbourhood of your search word. Collocates of letter might include post, stamp, envelope, etc. However, very common words like the will also collocate with letter.
The point of itů
By examining the collocates you can find out more about "the company the word keeps", which helps to show its meaning and its usage.
You may compute a concordance with or without collocates: without is slightly quicker and will take up less room on your hard disk. The default is to compute with collocates.
The number of collocates stored will depend on the collocation horizons.
You can re-compute collocates after editing your concordance.
Re-sort a collocate list in a variety of ways.
You can see the strength of relationship between the word and the search-word which the concordance was based on.
Collocates can be viewed after the concordance has been computed.
The literature on collocation has never distinguished very satisfactorily between collocates which we think of as "associated" with a word (letter - stamp) on the one hand, and on the other, the words which do actually co-occur with the word (letter - my, this, a, etc.).
We could call the first type "coherence collocates" and the second "neighbourhood collocates" or "horizon collocates". It has been suggested that to detect coherence collocates is very tricky, as once we start looking beyond a horizon of about 4 or 5 words on either side, we get so many words that there is more noise than signal in the system.