"Your Dictionary" is a song by Andy Partridge. It appeared on the 1999 album Apple Venus Volume 1.

The demo appeared on Apple Venus Volume 1's companion demo album, Homespun.

An instrumental version appeared on the Apple Venus Volume 1 instrumental album, Instruvenus.


Andy (on the demo): “I tried and tried NOT to write a divorce song, I really did, you have to believe me. The last thing I wanted was to come over as a grieved cattle bum crying into his beer in the bar of heartbreak motel. Or even worse, as Phil Collins. I mean, divorce is so. . . middle-aged and crap.

“Trouble was, the internal stale steam kept building, the pus kept expanding inside my head. I needed a safety valve, maybe if I just put all the hurt in one song. Not even that XTC should record this song mind you. Just let me release this cak out of my head, then I can move on.

“Boy did this thing come together quickly, and do you know what?, I felt better, clearer about things the second I finished the demo. In fact, I felt so different, I became very reluctant about going back to the state of mind I was in when I wrote it. This would only make a difficulty if the band ever recorded it, and of course we wouldn't choose to pick it for the album. It sounding so petulant and snide. Nobody would want to record ‘Dictionary’. So, no problem. This dog doesn't need to return to his vomit. I feel different from that now.

“Oh dear! Everyone in the band loves it, our new record companies love it, the producer loves it and the few friends who've heard it, love it. I was to be hoist by my own petard. Protesting meekly would do no good. If everyone else likes it so much, I must be in the wrong. Perhaps it was my embarrassment at penning such a childish tantrum of a song. Very reluctantly I agreed to record it, hoping secretly that it would fall at the last hurdle. But no, it came out fine, and I was left feeling annoyed for writing such a self exposing shanty.

“This demo recording is close to the finished thing. I guess I knew how it ought to go all along.”



Is that how you spell love in your dictionary


Pronounced as kind


Is that how you spell friend in your dictionary

Black on black

A guidebook for the blind

Well now that I can see my eyes won't weep

Now that I can hear your song sounds cheap

Now that I can talk all your corn I'll reap

I'm not so sure that Joey wed a Virgin Mary

There are no words for me inside your dictionary


Is that how you spell kiss in your dictionary


Pronounced as care


Is that how you spelt me in your dictionary

Four-eyed fool

You led 'round everywhere

Now that I can see it's the queens new clothes

Now that I can hear all your poison prose

Now that I can talk with my tongue unfroze

I'm not so sure of Santa or the buck-tooth fairy

There are no words for me inside your dictionary

Now your laughter has a hollow ring

But the hollow ring has no finger in

So let's close the book and let the day begin

And our marriage be undone

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