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The Fly Fisher's Illustrated Dictionary

Martin, Darrel

2 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 1585740535 / ISBN 13: 9781585740536
Published by Lyons Press, New York, 2000
Condition: As New Hardcover
From Fireside Angler (Smithtown, NY, U.S.A.)

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276 pp. Size: 8vo - over 7¾" - 9¾" tall. Bookseller Inventory # 110142

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Bibliographic Details

Title: The Fly Fisher's Illustrated Dictionary

Publisher: Lyons Press, New York

Publication Date: 2000

Binding: Hard Cover

Book Condition:As New

Dust Jacket Condition: As New

Signed: Signed by Author

Edition: First Edition.

About this title


Full explanations of more than 350 terms and phrases used by fly fishers past and present.


No one's ever suggested that fly-fishing was as easy as A, B, C. Its very language casts unique and, at times, complex etymological (and entomological!) lines, which--from advanced wing to Z-twist--Darrel Martin's Dictionary amiably sets out to unravel. With its in-depth entries, historical citations, and affectionate embrace of the arcane, it's the angling equivalent of the OED--with hosts of explanatory photographs and drawings thrown in for good measure. He even uncovers the sport's smut: "a variety of small insects ... The early English origin of the term is related to smudge and soot ... perhaps related to Gaelic smuid, smoke, and early English smut, a cloud. The term has been used in trouting since 1889." Cool, huh? Who says you don't fish with your head?

A former teacher of Old and Middle English, Martin has married his passion for the evolution of words with his love of the evolution of fishing and fly-tying to produce a solid, comprehensive reference of some 350 words and phrases as engaging in its lexicographical storytelling as it is eminently useful. Confused about hackle pliers? Martin straightens you out. After a page and a half, you'll know what they do, how they work, why they're necessary, and where they come from. Equipment? Materials? Technique? Insects, their taxonomy and nomenclature? Martin addresses them deftly. Of course, not every possible entry is here--Martin used his own subjective dictionary Darwinism--but so many of those that do rise up are just innately wonderful: sneck, epilimnion, dapping, whip finisher, harling, and ocelli. The words alone are catch enough; what the Dictionary does with them is so uniformly interesting the book could easily be guilty of taking a bite out of your stream time. --Jeff Silverman

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