Word by word : the secret life of dictionaries

Book Cover
Average Rating
New York : Pantheon Books, [2017].
First edition.
Physical Desc
xiii, 296 pages ; 22 cm.
Main Library - Adult  1 available
413.028 Sta
Oliver La Farge - Adult  1 available
413.028 Sta
Southside - Adult  1 available
413.028 Sta


Loading Description...

Also in this Series

Checking series information...


LocationCall NumberStatus
Main Library - Adult413.028 StaOn Shelf
Oliver La Farge - Adult413.028 StaOn Shelf
Southside - Adult413.028 StaOn Shelf

More Like This

Loading more titles like this title...

More Details

9781101870945, 110187094X


Includes bibliographical references (pages 265-280) and index.
"Brimming with intelligence and personality, a vastly entertaining account of how dictionaries are made - a must read for word mavens. Have you ever tried to define the word "is?" Do you have strong feelings about the word (and, yes, it is a word) "irregardless?" Did you know that OMG was first used in 1917, in a letter to Winston Churchill? These are the questions that keep lexicographers up at night. While most of us might take dictionaries for granted, the process of writing dictionaries is in fact as lively and dynamic as language itself. With sharp wit and irreverence, Kory Stamper cracks open the complex, obsessive world of lexicography, from the agonizing decisions about what and how to define, to the knotty questions of usage in an ever-changing language. She explains why the small words are the most difficult to define, how it can take nine months to define a single word, and how our biases about language and pronunciation can have tremendous social influence. Throughout Stamper brings to life the hallowed halls (and highly idiosyncratic cubicles) of Merriam-Webster, a surprisingly rich world inhabited by quirky and erudite individuals who quietly shape the way we communicate. A sure delight for all lovers of words, Harmless Drudges will also improve readers' grasp and use of the English language"--,Provided by publisher.

Reviews from GoodReads

Loading GoodReads Reviews.


APA Citation (style guide)

Stamper, K. (2017). Word by word: the secret life of dictionaries (First edition.). Pantheon Books.

Chicago / Turabian - Author Date Citation (style guide)

Stamper, Kory. 2017. Word By Word: The Secret Life of Dictionaries. New York: Pantheon Books.

Chicago / Turabian - Humanities Citation (style guide)

Stamper, Kory. Word By Word: The Secret Life of Dictionaries New York: Pantheon Books, 2017.

MLA Citation (style guide)

Stamper, Kory. Word By Word: The Secret Life of Dictionaries First edition., Pantheon Books, 2017.

Note! Citation formats are based on standards as of August 2021. Citations contain only title, author, edition, publisher, and year published. Citations should be used as a guideline and should be double checked for accuracy.

Staff View

Loading Staff View.