A Dictionary of Modern English Usage

A Dictionary of Modern English Usage

Book - 2009
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Blackwell North Amer
No book had more influence on twentieth century attitudes to the English language in Britain than Henry Fowler's Dictionary of Modern English Usage. It rapidly became the standard work of reference for the correct use of English in terms of choice of words, grammar, and style. Much loved for his firm opinions, passion, and dry humour, Fowler has stood the test of time and is still considered the best arbiter of good practice. One of today's leading experts on the language, David Crystal, has now reassessed Fowler's contribution in this new edition.
Crystal goes beyond the popular mythology surrounding Fowler's reputation to retrace his method and practice and arrive at a fresh evaluation of his place in the history of linguistic thought. With a wealth of entertaining examples he looks at Fowler's stated principles and the tensions between his prescriptive and descriptive temperaments. He reaches some surprising conclusions and shows that the Dictionary does a great deal more than make normative recommendations and express private opinions. In addition he offers a modern perspective in notes on some 300 entries, in which he shows how English has changed since the 1920s.

Oxford University Press
No book had more influence on twentieth-century writers of English than Henry Fowler's Dictionary of Modern English Usage. It rapidly became the standard work of reference for the correct use of English in terms of choice of words, grammar, and style. Much loved for his firm opinions, passion, and dry humor, Fowler has stood the test of time and is still considered by many to be the best arbiter of good practice.
Now Oxford is bringing back the original long-out-of-print first edition of this beloved work, enhanced with a new introduction by one of today's leading experts on the language, David Crystal. Drawing on a wealth of entertaining examples, Crystal offers an insightful reassessment Fowler's reputation and his place in the history of linguistic thought. Fowler, Crystal points out, was far more sophisticated in his analysis of language than most people realize and many of his entries display a concern for descriptive accuracy which would do any modern linguist proud. And although the book is full of his personal likes and dislikes, Fowler's prescriptivism is usually intelligent and reasoned. Crystal concludes warmly that Fowler was like "an endearingly eccentric, schoolmasterly character, driven at times to exasperation by the infelicities of his wayward pupils, but always wanting the best for them and hoping to provide the best guidance for them.... He may shake his stick at us, but we never feel we are actually going to be beaten."
In the concluding section of the book, Crystal examines nearly 300 entries in detail, offers a modern perspective on them, and shows how English has changed since the 1920s. This exciting and long awaited re-release of one of the classic works of English reference will delight everyone interested in language.

Publisher: Oxford ; New York : Oxford University Press, 2009
Edition: New ed
ISBN: 9780199535347
0199535345
Branch Call Number: REF 428 FOW
Characteristics: xxxi, 784 p. ;,21 cm.
Additional Contributors: Crystal, David 1941-

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