The evidence that the comprehension of abstract and concrete words differ prompts one to consider how the lexical representations for these word types differ. The context-availability model (Schwanenflugel & Shoben, 1983) suggests that abstract words are more difficult to process because associated contextual information stored in memory for these words is more difficult to retrieve than for concrete words. Schwanenflugel (1991) provides two hypotheses regarding how these differences in retrieval of contextual information may come about. Three simulations using context representations from the Hyperspace Analogue to Language (HAL) model of memory (Burgess & Lund, 1997; Lund & Burgess, 1996) are used to evaluate Schwanenflugel’s hypotheses, as well as to provide insight into the representational differences between abstract and concrete words.