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The Canine In Conversation
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Links to: Empirical Work on Dogs Dogs in the Context of Culture Figures of Speech
External Links to Resources on Language, Lexicography, Word Origins, etc:
icon for American Dialect Society The American Dialect Society was founded in 1889. It is dedicated to the study of the English language in North America, and of other languages, or dialects of other languages, influencing it or influenced by it. Members include academics and amateurs, professionals and dilettantes, teachers and writers. The Society's online forums and its quarterly journal, American Speech, are excellent resources.
Oxford English dictionary Logo The Oxford English Dictionary Online The OED—in print or online—is, as they say, "The definitive record of the English language," pun intended, I imagine. Even though this is a reference work that tilts decidedly towards the other side of the Atlantic Ocean, this remains the best single resource for the consideration of the origins and meanings of English words. Unfortunately, you have to pay to play, or have access through your local library.
the Phrase Finder The Phrase Finder was developed by Gary Martin when he was a post-graduate at Sheffield Hallam University. "It grew out of an interest in computational linguistics. While no reference work is able to claim its content is 100% definitive, every effort has been made to include only information that is verifiable as correct. The content is researched to published book standards. The sources used in the research are twofold, either primary sources or trusted references."
Century Dictionary The Century Dictionary was first published from 1889-1891 in multiple volume sets of 7,046 pages and over 10,000 wood engraved illustrations. The searchable online version is an outstanding free resource for historical investigations of words and their meanings. This one is American in character and the illustrations are outstanding.
image for the Newspaper Archive Newspaper Archive "The largest historical newspaper database online, contains tens of millions of newspaper pages from 1759 to present. Every newspaper in the archive is fully searchable by keyword and date, making it easy for you to quickly explore historical content." This is a subscription database and is a common resource for lexicographers to use in trying to discover first usage.
DARE cover Dictionary of American Regional English "seeks to document the varieties of English that are not found everywhere in the United States--those words, pronunciations, and phrases that vary from one region to another, that we learn at home rather than at school, or that are part of our oral rather than our written culture." Unfortunately this outstanding resource is not available online. However, there are useful resources on the DARE web site including its Newsletter in pdf form.
link for Bill Safire William Safire's On Language columns for the New York Times Magazine are thoughtful and provocative meditations on language, usage, politics, and society. If my father were not cremated, he would no doubt roll in his grave knwing that I am recommending anything by this former Nixon speechwriter, but the truth is that this is an excellent resource. He has been writing these columns since 1979 and the Times touts him as "the most widely read writer on the English Language." All columns are available from the Times.
doubletongue The Double-Tongued Dictionary records undocumented or under-documented words from the fringes of English, with a focus on slang, jargon, and new words. This site strives to record terms and expressions that are absent from, or are poorly covered in, mainstream dictionaries. Editor Grant Barrett also edits of the Official Dictionary of Unofficial English and the Oxford Dictionary of American Political Slang, so he knows whereof he writes. And he is co-host, along with Martha Barnette, of the radio show, A Way With Words.
twd logo The Word Detective on the Web is an online version of Evan Morris's newspaper column answering reader questions about words and language. As the son of the eminent lexicographers William and Mary Morris he brings a wealth of knowledge to his work, and more than a bit of humor. is devoted to the origins of words and phrases, or as a linguist would put it, to etymology. Etymology is the study of word origins. Site producer and primary author Dave Wilton is an independent researcher in historical linguistics, etymology, and slang origins. He is the author of Word Myths: Debunking Linguistic Urban Legends (Oxford Univ. Press, 2004).
world wide words World Wide Words: Michael Quinion writes on international English from a British viewpoint. Quinion provides citations and advice for the Oxford English Dictionary. He also wrote a third of the entries for the second edition of the Oxford Dictionary of New Words and for a while compiled a weekly New Words column in the Daily Telegraph. His dictionary of affixes, Ologies and Isms, was published by the Oxford University Press in August 2002.
word spy Word Spy This Web site is devoted to lexpionage, the sleuthing of new words and phrases. These aren't "stunt words" or "sniglets," but new terms that have appeared multiple times in newspapers, magazines, books, Web sites, and other recorded sources. Paul McFedries and Logophilia Limited
cliche finder Cliché Finder: Have you been searching for just the right cliché to use? Are you searching for a cliché using the word "cat" or "day" but haven't been able to come up with one? Just enter any words in the form below, and this search engine will return any clichés which use that phrase... Over 3,300 clichés indexed!
sketched out Sketched Out is Linda Silvestri's online sketchbook. The section of illustrations of animal idioms is really nicely done. I especially like the one of the tail wagging the dog.
Word Play Word Play is a collection of links to some interesting word and language related sites on the web. Some links lead to collections of Americana, such as Burma Shave Slogans. Others to such things as pun or phobia lists.
other dictionaries
Additional Word Resources on the Net: ArtLex Art Dictionary; Cliché Finder; College Slang Dictionary; Dictionary of American Proprietary Eponyms; Dictionary of Philosophical Terms and Names; A Dictionay of Slang; The Jargon File; Lex Scripta: Dictionaries of Slang; Macquarie Dictionary Online: Australia's National Dictionary Online; Magnuson English Idioms Sayings and Slang; Medical Etymology; One Look Dictionary Search; Online Dictionary of Playground Slang; Online Etymology Dictionary; The Online Slang Dictionary (a collaborative Project; Origin of Phrases; Pseudodictionary; The Rice University Neologisms Database; Slang Dictionary collected by Linguistics students at the University of Oregon; Street Drug Slang Dictionary; Take Our Word For It; Urban Dictionary; Wizard's Gay & Black Glossary; word for word; WordNet; Wordsmyth; Worthless Word for the Day; Zora Neale Hurston's Glossary of Harlem Slang;
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