Philip Gooden; Peter Lewis
War words have embedded themselves in our collective psyche; British politicians are fond of invoking the 'Dunkirk spirit' whenever the country is faced with major...
Featuring Latinate and Celtic words, weasel words and nonce-words, ancient word ('loaf') to advanced ('twittersphere') and spanning the indispensable words that shape our tongue ('and', 'what') to the more fanciful...
A humorous, trenchant and fascinating examination of how Western culture's taboo words have evolved over the millennia
Charles Barber; Joan Beal; Philip Shaw
This bestselling text by Charles Barber recounts the history of the English language from its ancestry to the present day.
Gowers, Rebecca; Gowers, Ernest
'Be short, be simple, be human.'
When Sir Ernest Gowers first wrote Plain Words, it was intended simply as a guide to the proper use of English...
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This is the story of how Latin developed into modern French, Spanish, and Italian, and deeply affected English as well. Although the Romance languages evolved directly...
George Davidson; Christopher Upward
The History of English Spelling reveals the history of Modern English spelling, tracing its origins and development from Old English up to the present day. Includes a wealth of...
How many languages are there? What differentiates one language from another? Are new languages still being discovered? Why are so many languages disappearing? These are some of the questions considered...
Linda Flavell; Roger Flavell
Words are the building blocks of language, but their derivations are often stories in themselves. With entries from accolade to zoo and including such disparate items as blackmail, fiasco, influence...
Rhyming slang is a subject of perennial interest to the general language-conscious public. Entries are arranged in subject areas, such as clothing, food and drink, and animals. John Ayto explores...
Samuel Johnson; Edward Allhusen
Fopdoodle, salmagundi, kissingcrust, runnion and stingo are all endangered for lack of use. This work reveals a selection of over 1000 entries in Dr Johnson's famous dictionary first published 250...
J. Redding Ware; John Simpson
Ware's dictionary, first published in 1909, is a treasure trove of the everyday language of the nineteenth century. Reproduced in facsimile with an introduction by John Simpson, Chief Editor of...
Marc Fumaroli; Richard Howard
From the death of Louis XIV to the Revolution - in Sweden, Austria, Italy, Spain, England, Russia, and Germany; among kings and queens, diplomats, military leaders, writers, great ladies, and...
Get stuck into this authoritative and entertaining dictionary of English idioms. Packed with over 6,000 entries from the whole of the English-speaking world, including figurative expressions, similes, sayings, and proverbs...