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Samuel Johnson and the Journey into Words

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Table of Contents

Preface ; 1. Journeys into Words ; 2. Writing the Dictionary: Departures and destinations ; 3. 'Excursions into books': Documenting the new world of words ; 4. The Ordered State: Power, authority, and the written word ; 5. Meaning, governance, and the colours of words ; 6. Defending the Citadel, patrolling the borders ; 7. History and the flux of time ; 8. The praise of perfection ; Appendix: 1755 - 1773 ; Notes ; References ; Index

About the Author

Lynda Mugglestone is Professor of the History of English and Fellow and Tutor in English at Pembroke College. She is the editor of Lexicography and the OED (OUP 2002),The Oxford History of English (OUP 2006, 2nd edn 2012) and, with Freya Johnston, of Samuel Johnson: The Arc of the Pendulum (OUP 2012). Her books include Talking Proper: The Rise of Accent as Social Symbol (OUP 1995, 2nd edn 2003), Lost for Words: The Hidden History of the Oxford English Dictionary (Yale 2004) and Dictionaries: A Very Short Introduction (OUP 2011).


Lynda Mugglestone has given us a highly readable, fascinating account, where her high competence in the history of the English language and deep insights into Johnson's world of words get perfectly integrated with the best and most up-to-date criticism of the Dictionary. * Giovanni Iamartino, Johnsonian News Letter * Mugglestones meticulous research and stylistic clarity render this volume both informative and entertaining ... Those approaching Johnsons great, complicated book for the first time will find this brief but rich volume the go-to guide for years to come. * A. W. Lee, Choice * "Mugglestone's scholarship displays deep learning with a deceptive lightness, a talent she shares with her subject. * Times Higher Education, Willy Maley * The book is acutely historically aware and deeply serious * Min Wild, Times Literary Supplement * This is a fascinating study of Johnson, which reopens areas of investigation that have long since seemed closed. This is a book for students of Johnson or the eighteenth century at any level. * George E. Haggerty, SEL Studies in English Literature 1500-1900 *

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