Friday, November 30, 2012

Not so fast …

The linguist Sarah Ogilvie, a former director of the Australian National Dictionary Centre who herself worked as an editor for the O.E.D., has gained considerable attention for her new book, “Words of the World: The Global History of the Oxford English Dictionary.” An article about the book in the Guardian—excerpted on Gawker and many other places, and widely retweeted—highlighted the claim that Robert Burchfield, the editor of the four-volume “Supplement to the Oxford English Dictionary” published from 1972 to 1986, “covertly deleted thousands of words because of their foreign origins.” 

This claim is completely bogus.

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