Noah Webster studied 26 languages in order to write his dictionary.
Although Noah Webster was not the first American to create a dictionary, his name has come to be associated with the American dictionary. Webster wrote An American Dictionary of the English Language in the hopes of contributing to the creation of a uniquely American lexicon with Americanized spelling and pronunciation of words. Webster became serious about becoming an etymology expert in order to thoroughly research word origins and sources. To write his dictionary, he learned 26 languages, including Sanskrit and Old English. It was published in 1828 and included the first definitions of "American" words like chowder and skunk.