Thesaurus are themed arborescences of key-words, which sometimes include one or several translations, and they are organized in sub-categories or in alphabetical order. The other multilingual database are made of glossaries or lexicons, meaning specialized unilingual lists wih definitions or mulilingual lists without definitions. You can search these lists with key-words, whereas thesaurus are searched from themes..
This link provides a thorough list of thesaurus:
Examples of multilingual lexicons and glossaries :
- Searching is convienently made by key-words, alphabetical order or categories.
- This is some extremely specialized terminology that cannot be found in a general dictionary.
- They can be found either on institutional or personal sites.
- Few data can be downloaded, and the formats are complicated to use.
- Working offline is impossible (not convenient for educational organizations with few means, for example).
- Most of the time, these database only offer two or three languages. Regional languages are rarely represented on international organizations’ websites (Occitan, Catalan, Gaelic, etc.).
- If they are multilingual, database offer very few, if no definitions.
- They are limited to local linguistic specificities particular to the owner of the site. Consequently, it is hard to find glossaries including Canadian French and Belgian French, for example.
- They are often limited to the scope of application of the organization that publishes them.
In spite of their great daily usefulness for professionals and language students, these tools would be better if less spread out and more complete in terms of services.