The Oxford Dictionary of English Etymology

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9780198611127: The Oxford Dictionary of English Etymology
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This comprehensive dictionary by one of our century's greatest language scholars provides a clear and brief account of the origins, history, and sense-development of more than 38,000 words.

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Dr. C.T. Onions first joined the staff of the Oxford English Dictionary in 1895. He worked on the OED, the Shorter OED, and then published his Shakespeare Glossary in 1911. A wonderful and learned scholar, he died in 1966 as the first edition of The Oxford Dictionary of English Etymology was going to press. Assisted by G.W.S. Friedrichsen and R.W. Burchfield, Onions created a magnificent work of erudition, with 24,000 main entries. Including their derivatives, the dictionary delves into the origins of more than 38,000 words.

For each entry, the dictionary provides the correct pronunciation, followed by a short definition, and the century and source of the word's first recording. Then come the etymological notes. Thus one learns that "froth" (an aggregation of small bubbles on liquid) was first noted in the 14th century, in Sir Gawain and the Bible, that it comes from the Old Norse frooa, and was taken from there into German (fraup) and Old English (froth). Now in its fifth printing and a standard reference for scholars, Onions's opus is still the most comprehensive etymological dictionary of English ever to be published. --Stephanie Gold

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The Oxford Dictionary of English Etymology is the most comprehensive etymological dictionary of the English language ever published. It is based on the original edition of The Oxford English Dictionary but much augmented by further research on the etymology of English and other languages.

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Publisher: Clarendon P, 1966
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