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An Annotated Survey of English Etymological Dictionaries and Glossaries

An Annotated Survey of English Etymological Dictionaries and Glossaries An Annotated Survey of English Etymological Dictionaries and Glossaries In 1617 the first etymological dictionary of English (Minsheu) was published. Today's scholar will find several shelves of dictionaries and glossaries expounding the origins of English words. Those published before the discovery of the comparative method are strong on guesswork and weak on insights, but they should not be dismissed out of hand. Some ties between English and Latin, and between English and French, were established correctly by the first etymologists. Many Germanic cognates of English words were also identified long ago. Even the emphasis on Hebrew typical of 17th- and 18th-century lin- guistics can be put to use when it comes to Wanderwörter and the roots presumably shared by Indo-European and Semitic. But of special interest are such dictionaries to the students of the history of ideas. It is regrettable that no one has thought of writing an English counterpart of Arthur Schmidt's most useful book, Zum Fortschritt der etymologischen Erkenntnis des Deutschen in Wörterbüchern des 17. und 18. Jahrhunderts. (Germanische Studien 49. Berlin: Emil Ebering, 1927.) Language enthusiasts who today want to satisfy their curiosity about the derivation of English words do not need an etymological dictionary: http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Dictionaries: Journal of the Dictionary Society of North America Dictionary Society of North America

An Annotated Survey of English Etymological Dictionaries and Glossaries

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Publisher
Dictionary Society of North America
Copyright
Copyright © The Dictionary Society of North America
ISSN
2160-5076
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Abstract

An Annotated Survey of English Etymological Dictionaries and Glossaries In 1617 the first etymological dictionary of English (Minsheu) was published. Today's scholar will find several shelves of dictionaries and glossaries expounding the origins of English words. Those published before the discovery of the comparative method are strong on guesswork and weak on insights, but they should not be dismissed out of hand. Some ties between English and Latin, and between English and French, were established correctly by the first etymologists. Many Germanic cognates of English words were also identified long ago. Even the emphasis on Hebrew typical of 17th- and 18th-century lin- guistics can be put to use when it comes to Wanderwörter and the roots presumably shared by Indo-European and Semitic. But of special interest are such dictionaries to the students of the history of ideas. It is regrettable that no one has thought of writing an English counterpart of Arthur Schmidt's most useful book, Zum Fortschritt der etymologischen Erkenntnis des Deutschen in Wörterbüchern des 17. und 18. Jahrhunderts. (Germanische Studien 49. Berlin: Emil Ebering, 1927.) Language enthusiasts who today want to satisfy their curiosity about the derivation of English words do not need an etymological dictionary:

Journal

Dictionaries: Journal of the Dictionary Society of North AmericaDictionary Society of North America

Published: Apr 4, 1998

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