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Promoted item:NEW The Oxford English Dictionary: 20 Volume Set by J.A. Simpson Hardcover Book

NEW The Oxford English Dictionary: 20 Volume Set by J.A. Simpson Hardcover Book

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  • 9780198611868
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About Oxford English Dictionary

The Oxford English Dictionary has long been considered the official compendium of all 'relevant' English words. The 2005 version, released on November 30th, contained well over 300,000 entries. The OED supplements its sophisticated yet clear definitions with etymological references, quotations to illustrate usage, and pronunciation guides. The dictionary, when printed, is typically well over 20,000 pages, and the most recently published OED contains over 350 million characters all told.The OED was first put together in the mid 19th century by scholars in London. Herbert Coleridge in conjunction with Richard Trench and Frederick Furnivall developed a committee to address the inadequacies found in the dictionaries at the time. They put together a list of goals for their dictionary and began work shortly thereafter to construct a new English dictionary, also referred to as an NED.Their project has progressed through numerous incarnations, and many rival dictionaries have challenged the OED for supremacy among the lexophilic elite, most particularly the Merriam-Webster Dictionary. Today, the OED faces challenges from dictionary upstarts on the Web, but hardbound volumes remain treasured heirlooms and even collectors' items.The goal of the OED is to be an organic, evolving project, incorporating modern slang and technical terminology and illuminating obscure words through quotations and context. One of the OED's biggest challenges is how to incorporate the exponentially increasing vocabulary of technical, biological, engineering lexicons, but their answer to this challenge makes each edition unique and highly valued.