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
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...
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...
Lorenzo N. Smith
This dictionary of World War I slang was compiled by a Canadian soldier in 1918, in response to the many questions he received about the meanings of words used in...
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...
An amusing, informative, controversial and utterly irreverent history of the world's favourite word.
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...
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...
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...
The Story of English illustrates the compelling history of how the relatively obscure dialects spoken by tribes from what are now Denmark, the Low Countries and northern Germany, became the...
Richard Anthony Baker
From the author of the BBC Radio News house style guide comes a fascinating guide to the English language.
John Ayto; John Simpson
Drawing on the unique resources of the Oxford English Dictionary and offering coverage of over 6,000 slang words and expressions from the Cockney 'abaht' to the American term 'zowie', this...