The Story of Websters Third: Philip Goves Controversial Dictionary and its Critics by Herbert C. MortonThe Story of Websters Third: Philip Goves Controversial Dictionary and its Critics by Herbert C. Morton

The Story of Websters Third: Philip Goves Controversial Dictionary and its Critics

byHerbert C. Morton

Paperback | May 26, 1995

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The publication of Webster's Third New International Dictionary in 1961 set off a storm of intense controversy in both the popular press and in scholarly journals due to widespread disagreements about the nature of language and the role of the dictionary. This is the first full account of the controversy, set within the larger background of how the dictionary was planned and put together by its editor-in-chief, Philip Babcock Gove. Based on original research and interviews with the people who knew and worked with Gove, this is a human story as well as the story of the making of a dictionary. The author skillfully interweaves an account of Gove's character and working habits with the evolution of the dictionary. In spite of its rocky initial reception, Webster's Third is now widely regarded as one of the greatest dictionaries of our time.
Title:The Story of Websters Third: Philip Goves Controversial Dictionary and its CriticsFormat:PaperbackProduct dimensions:360 pages, 8.98 × 5.98 × 0.79 inShipping dimensions:8.98 × 5.98 × 0.79 inPublished:May 26, 1995Publisher:Cambridge University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0521558697

ISBN - 13:9780521558693

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Table of Contents

1. The best of times and the worst: a prologue; Part I. Philip Gove and The Genesis of Webster's Third: 2. Gove's formative years: the road to Springfield; 3. The Webster and Merriam tradition; 4. The new editor takes hold; Part II. The Making of the Dictionary: Gove's Intentions: 5. The meaning of words: definers at work; 6. The origins of words: the etymologist's task; 7. The sound of words and other matters; 8. Usage and final tasks; Part III. The War of Words: 9. Early Returns: the fuse is lit; 10. The controversy heats up; 11. 1962: calamity or calumny?; 12. Commercial intrusions: trademarks, takeover threats, competition; 13. Ideology and politics in the running debate; 14. The judgment of peers; Part IV. Sorting It All Out: 15. Gove and Webster's Third: the legacy; 16. Concluding words.

From Our Editors

The publication of Webster's Third International Dictionary in 1961 set off a storm of controversy that was virtually unprecedented in its scope and intensity. Herbert Morton tells the story from the beginning, drawing on new sources. He describes how the third edition was planned and put together by Gove, where it went astray, and how it was misunderstood and misinterpreted by its detractors.

Editorial Reviews

"Only rarely has the process of lexicography been given such insightful and understanding treatment by a non-lexicographer as we find in Morton's book." Sharp News