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Not sure if this belongs here, but I'm in the market for some new books on words. I've been a fan of Eugene Ehrlich's stuff and I'd like to hear what the community thinks is their top five choices that are must-haves in their libraries. Whatchagot?
 
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We have a few shelves filled with language/word books. However, the supreme expert on this is z, so I will defer to our in-house expert.
 
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Here's one list:

A. On language / linguistics

Ferdinand de Saussure. A Course In General Linguistics.
Edward Sapir. Language.
Otto Jespersen. Language.
Leonard Bloomfield. Language.
Henry Hoenigswald. Language Change and Linguistic Reconstruction.
Jean Aitchison. Language Change: Progress or Decay?.
Robert Hall. Linguistics and Your Language. (Originally Leave Your Language Alone!)
Yakov Malkiel. Etymology.
Calvert Watkins. How To Kill A Dragon: Aspects of Indo-European Poetics.

B. On books:

John Baxter. A Pound of Paper: Confessions of a Book Addict.
Paul Collins. Sixpence House: Lost in A Town Of Books.

Some of them may be out of print, but are available used from your friendly neighborhood used book store or from the abebooks.com or amazon.com sites. They reflect my whims and tastes, and (I am sure) others will have different suggestions (which is a goodly thing).


Ceci n'est pas un seing.
 
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or, if you're inclined more to books on words such as Ehrlich's Highly Selective Dictionary...

C. On Words:

The New York Times Everyday Reader's Dictionary of Misunderstood, Misused, Mispronounced Words, ed. by Laurence Urdang
Norman W. Schur, 2000 Most Challenging And Obscure Words [originally two separate volumes]
Josefa Heifetz Byrne, Mrs. Byrne's Dictionary of Unusual, Obscure, and Preposterous Words
Peter Novobatzky and Ammon Shea, Depraved and Insulting English [originally two volumes]
[many more of this ilk..]

on Language:

H. L. Mencken, The American Language
William Safire, various
Samuel F. Vaughn and William F. Buckley, The Right Word
Bill Bryson, various

on Dictionaries: [!]

Sidney I. Landau, Dictionaries: The Art and Craft of Lexicography
Jonathon Green, Chasing the Sun
 
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Sidney I. Landau, Dictionaries: The Art and Craft of Lexicography
Jonathon Green, Chasing the Sun

Yes, this are both fine books. Two more:

John Willinsky. Empire of Words: The Reign of the OED.
K M Elisabeth Murray. Caught in the Web of Words: James Murray and the Oxford English Dictionary.

For a slightly more pedantic view of what lexicography is:

Ladislav Zgusta. Manual of Lexicography.
Fred W. Householder and Sol Saporta. Problems in Lexicography.


Ceci n'est pas un seing.
 
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These sound like excellent recommendations. Thanks very much Big Grin
 
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quote:
What new books are you anxious to get?

I'm looking forward to:

Pleasure of a Dark Prince by Kresley Cole
Archangel's Kiss by Nalini Singh
Darkness Within by Sherrilyn Kenyon
Lion's Heat by Lora Leigh
Wild Fire by Christine Feehan
Water Bound by Christine Feehan
Patience by Lisa Valdez

Ack, that's about it for this year.....so far anyway.

[Admin: Removed links that violate forum policy.]

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Welcome, Elizabeth, and we love book recommendations!
 
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Anne Tyler has a new book out. Can't wait to read it!
 
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Here's on on the manipulation of language that I found interesting: http://www.sup.org/book.cgi?isbn=080475652X To some degree it reminded me of Chomsky's Necessary Illusions. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bWp5_TU0rUI


It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society. -J. Krishnamurti
 
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Oh, Geoff, that looks excellent. Right now I am so behind in my reading because of work, but that will go on my list.
 
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