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Thursday, January 30, 2020 | History

4 edition of The preface to Johnson"s Dictionary of the English language, 1755 found in the catalog.

The preface to Johnson"s Dictionary of the English language, 1755

Samuel Johnson

The preface to Johnson"s Dictionary of the English language, 1755

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Published by The Rowfant club in Cleveland .
Written in English


Edition Notes

ContributionsRowfant Club (Cleveland, Ohio)
The Physical Object
Pagination2 p. l., 32 p., 1 l.
Number of Pages32
ID Numbers
Open LibraryOL16329557M
LC Control Number35001282

To interpret a language by itself is very difficult; many words cannot be explained by synonimes, because the idea signified by them has not more than one appellation; nor by paraphrase, because simple ideas cannot be described. And Johnson could be opinionated in other ways, as in his famous though not original definition of oats: "a grain, which in England is generally given to horses, but in Scotland supports the people. And such is the fate of hapless lexicography, that not only darkness, but light, impedes and distresses it; things may be not only too little, but too much known, to be happily illustrated. But every art is obscure to those that have not learned it: this uncertainty of terms, and commixture of ideas, is well known to those who have joined philosophy with grammar; and if I have not expressed them very clearly, it must be remembered that I am speaking of that which words are insufficient to explain.

The production line ground on and although the work took more than twice as long as the expected three years, the dictionary was duly published in in two volumes with approaching 43, entries in 2, pages. The work was immense. Words: - Pages: 26 Seminary Many of the distinctions which to common readers appear useless and idle, will be found real and important by men versed in the school philosophy, without which no dictionary ever shall be accurately compiled, or skilfully examined. In Addison: Attend to what a lesser muse indites. This difficulty is increased by the necessity of explaining the words in the same language; for there is often only one word for one idea; and though it be easy to translate the words bright, sweet, salt, bitter, into another language, it is not easy to explain them.

I have attempted few alterations, and among those few, perhaps the greater part is from the modern to the ancient practice; and I hope I may be allowed to recommend to those, whose thoughts have been perhaps employed too anxiously on verbal singularities, not to disturb, upon narrow views, or for minute propriety, the orthography of their fathers. The growth of the Spanish language goes with the growth of Latin American countries. Johnson refused to quote from Thomas Hobbes, however, because he disapproved of his ideas. Barbarisms Johnson didn't hesitate to pass judgment on words he considered socially unacceptable. When this wild and barbarous jargon was first reduced to an alphabet, every penman endeavored to express, as he could, the sounds which he was accustomed to pronounce or to receive, and vitiated in writing such words as were already vitiated in speech. Literary English is indifferent to territorial usage.


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The preface to Johnsons Dictionary of the English language, 1755 book

Throughout the stages of its development there has been a struggle for progressive tendencies, which, on the one hand, aim at barring the language from the Subscribe today This article was most recently revised and updated by Robert LewisAssistant Editor. He that is catching opportunities which seldom occur, will suffer those to pass by unregarded, which he expects hourly to return; he that is searching for rare and remote things, will neglect those that are obvious and familiar: thus many of the most common and cursory words have been inserted with little illustration, because in gathering the authorities, I forebore to copy those which I thought likely to occur whenever they were wanted.

As politeness increases, some expressions will be considered as too gross and vulgar for the delicate, others as too formal and ceremonious for the gay and airy; new phrases are therefore adopted, which must for the same reasons be in time dismissed.

I was drawn forward with the prospect of employment, which, though not splendid, would be useful; and which, though it could not make my life envied, would keep it innocent; which would awaken no passion, engage me in no contention, nor throw in my way any temptation to disturb the quiet of others by censure, or my own by flattery.

When this wild and barbarous jargon was first reduced to an alphabet, every penman endeavored to express, as he could, the sounds which he was accustomed to pronounce or to receive, and vitiated in writing such words as were already vitiated in speech.

I cannot hope, in the warmest moments, to preserve so much caution through so long a work, as not often to sink into negligence, or to obtain so much knowledge of all its parts, as not frequently to fail by ignorance.

References to academic journals should NOT include the month or date. When we see men grow old and die at a certain time one after another, from century to century, we laugh at the elixir that promises to prolong life to a thousand years; and with equal justice may the lexicographer be derided, who being able to produce no example of a nation that has preserved their words and phrases from mutability, shall imagine that his dictionary can embalm his language, and secure it from corruption and decay, that it is in his power to change sublunary nature, or clear the world at once from folly, vanity, and affectation.

The chief glory of every people arises from its authours: whether I shall add any thing by my own writings to the reputation of English literature, must be left to time: much of my life has been lost under the pressures of disease; much has been trifled away; and much has always been spent in provision for the day that was passing over me; but I shall not think my employment useless or ignoble, if by my assistance foreign nations, and distant ages, gain access to the propagators of knowledge, and understand the teachers of truth; if my labours afford light to the repositories of science, and add celebrity to Bacon, to Hooker, to Milton, and to Boyle.

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For example, when the new society is one that accepts ethnic and cultural diversity, acculturative stress is reduced Shuval, Those who have much leisure to think, will always be enlarging the stock of ideas, and every increase of knowledge, whether real or fancied, will produce new words, or combinations of words.

Saveley, Secret city: Photographs from Peru pp. Words are seldom exactly synonimous; a new term was not introduced, but because the former was thought inadequate: names, therefore, have often many ideas, but few ideas have many names. I have attempted few alterations, and among those few, perhaps the greater part is from the modern to the ancient practice; and I hope I may be allowed to recommend to those, whose thoughts have been perhaps employed too anxiously on verbal singularities, not to disturb, upon narrow views, or for minute propriety, the orthography of their fathers.

Place of publication: Publisher. In any case of doubt or difficulty, it will be always proper to examine all the words of the same race; for some words are slightly passed over to avoid repetition, some admitted easier and clearer explanation than others, and all will be better understood, as they are considered in greater variety of structures and relations.

Junius was accurately skilled in all the northern languages, Skinner probably examined the ancient and remoter dialects only by occasional inspection into dictionaries; but the learning of Junius is often of no other use than to show him a track by which he may deviate from his purpose, to which Skinner always presses forward by the shortest way.

Thus fox makes in the plural foxes, but ox makes oxen. My search, however, has been either skilful or lucky; for I have much augmented the vocabulary. The scholar fixing the language norm is made to bow to his majesty the people.

But English is also very broadly spoken as second language communication, commerce. It will sometimes be found that the accent is placed by the author quoted, on a different syllable from that marked in the alphabetical series; it is then to be understood, that custom has varied, or that the author has, in my opinion, pronounced wrong.

It is not to be expected, that with the explanation of the one the herald should be satisfied, or the philosopher with that of the other; but since it will be required by common readers, that the explications should be sufficient for common use; and since, without some attention to such demands, the Dictionary cannot become generally valuable, I have determined to consult the best writers for explanations real as well as verbal; and, perhaps, I may at last have reason to say, after one of the augmenters of Furetier, that my book is more learned than its author.

Thus some explanations are unavoidably reciprocal or circular, as hind, the female of the stag; stag, the male of the hind: sometimes easier words are changed into harder, as burial into sepulture or interment, drier into desiccative, dryness into siccity or aridity, fit into paroxysm; for the easiest word, whatever it be, can never be translated into one more easy.

Words: - Pages: 21 Donta' Any of us can read a newspaper printed in Leeds or San Francisco or Delhi without difficulty and often even without realizing that there are differences at all. Words: - Pages: 30 English Introduction But easiness and difficulty are merely relative, and if the present prevalence of our language should invite foreigners to this dictionary, many will be assisted by those words which now seem only to increase or produce obscurity.Johnson, Preface to the Dictionary From Samuel Johnson, A Dictionary of the English Language (London, ) Edited by Jack Lynch [1] It is the fate of those who toil at the lower employments of life, to be rather driven by the fear of evil, than attracted by the prospect of good; to be exposed to censure, without hope of praise; to be disgraced by miscarriage, or punished for neglect, where.

THE PREFACE TO JOHNSON'S DICTIONARY OF THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE on sylvaindez.com *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. Written virtually single-handedly over a seven-year period by a revered dean of English letters, Johnson’s Dictionary first appeared in A remarkable monument to the vigor and variety of our language and to the genius of its author, it served as the standard dictionary for more than years and formed the basis for all subsequent English dictionaries.1/5(1).

Immediately download the Preface to a Dictionary of the English Language summary, chapter-by-chapter analysis, book notes, essays, quotes, character descriptions, lesson plans, and more - everything you need for studying or teaching Preface to a Dictionary of the English Language.

Jul 16,  · Samuel Johnson's two volume, 2, page dictionary marked a milestone in sylvaindez.com work of a great reader and writer, and an earnest compiler, it was England's definitive dictionary for over years until it was superseded by The Oxford English sylvaindez.com new edition contains more than 3, selections faithfully adapted from the original/5(9).

Jan 24,  · Preface to a Dictionary of the English Language - Kindle edition by Samuel Johnson. Download it once and read it on your Kindle device, PC, phones or tablets. Use features like bookmarks, note taking and highlighting while reading Preface to a Dictionary of the English Language/5(21).