MANULEX: a grade-level lexical database from French elementary school readers.


  • Lété Bernard
  • Sprenger-Charolles Liliane
  • Colé Pascale

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This article presents MANULEX, a Web-accessible database that provides grade-level word frequency lists of nonlemmatized and lemmatized words (48,886 and 23,812 entries, respectively) computed from the 1.9 million words taken from 54 French elementary school readers. Word frequencies are provided for four levels: first grade (G1), second grade (G2), third to fifth grades (G3-5), and all grades (G1-5). The frequencies were computed following the methods described by Carroll, Davies, and Richman (1971) and Zeno, Ivenz, Millard, and Duvvuri (1995), with four statistics at each level (F, overall word frequency; D, index of dispersion across the selected readers; U, estimated frequency per million words; and SFI, standard frequency index). The database also provides the number of letters in the word and syntactic category information. MANULEX is intended to be a useful tool for studying language development through the selection of stimuli based on precise frequency norms. Researchers in artificial intelligence can also use it as a source of information on natural language processing to simulate written language acquisition in children. Finally, it may serve an educational purpose by providing basic vocabulary lists.

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