When you go to the Appendix D in Oracle Text Reference they provide lists of stopwords used by Oracle Text when indexing table contents.

When I see the English list, nothing puzzles me. But the reason why the French list includes moyennant (French for in view of which) for example is unclear. Oracle has probably thought it through more than once before including it.

How would you constitute a list of appropriate stopwords if you were to design an indexer?

2 Answers 2


Haven't really tried to build up a stopword list before, but my approach would be statistical analysis of appearance of words in text corpus.

Common words, which appear in many documents all over corpus with similar probability (and maybe low standard deviation), are bad at "identifying" any given document, should go into list of stopwords.

Vice versa, rare words are excellent at "identifying" documents (and are good keywords and search terms), and should not go in stopword list.


People don't usually search on articles, pronouns, prepositions, conjunctions and the like...adding them to your index just adds noise. I would also include common phrases that don't really add meaning to the text (whereas, instead of, on the other hand). Moyennant appears to fall in the latter category, that's probably why it's included as a stop word.

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