the professor and the madman

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The Surgeon Of Crowthorne

Author : Simon Winchester
ISBN : 9780141942049
Genre : Biography & Autobiography
File Size : 33. 38 MB
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The making of the Oxford English Dictionary was a monumental 50 year task requiring thousands of volunteers. One of the keenest volunteers was a W C Minor who astonished everyone by refusing to come to Oxford to receive his congratulations. In the end, James Murray, the OED's editor, went to Crowthorne in Berkshire to meet him. What he found was incredible - Minor was a millionaire American civil war surgeon turned lunatic, imprisoned in Broadmoor Asylum for murder and yet who dedicated his entire cell-bound life to work on the English language.

The Professor And The Madman

Author : Simon Winchester
ISBN : 0060175966
Genre : Biography & Autobiography
File Size : 52. 32 MB
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Mysterious (mistîe · ries), a. [f. L. mystérium Mysteryi + ous. Cf. F. mystérieux.] 1. Full of or fraught with mystery; wrapt in mystery; hidden from human knowledge or understanding; impossible or difficult to explain, solve, or discover; of obscure origin, nature, or purpose. It is known as one of the greatest literary achievements in the history of English letters. The creation of the Oxford English Dictionary began in 1857, took seventy years to complete, drew from tens of thousands of brilliant minds, and organized the sprawling language into 414,825 precise definitions. But hidden within the rituals of its creation is a fascinating and mysterious story--a story of two remarkable men whose strange twenty-year relationship lies at the core of this historic undertaking. Professor James Murray, an astonishingly learned former schoolmaster and bank clerk, was the distinguished editor of the OED project. Dr. William Chester Minor, an American surgeon from New Haven, Connecticut, who had served in the Civil War, was one of thousands of contributors who submitted illustrative quotations of words to be used in the dictionary. But Minor was no ordinary contributor. He was remarkably prolific, sending thousands of neat, handwritten quotations from his home in the small village of Crowthorne, fifty miles from Oxford. On numerous occasions Murray invited Minor to visit Oxford and celebrate his work, but Murray's offer was regularly--and mysteriously--refused. Thus the two men, for two decades, maintained a close relationship only through correspondence. Finally, in 1896, after Minor had sent nearly ten thousand definitions to the dictionary but had still never traveled from his home, a puzzled Murray set out to visit him. It was then that Murray finally learned the truth about Minor--that, in addition to being a masterful wordsmith, Minor was also a murderer, clinically insane--and locked up in Broadmoor, England's harshest asylum for criminal lunatics. The Professor and the Madman is an extraordinary tale of madness and genius, and the incredible obsessions of two men at the heart of the Oxford English Dictionary and literary history. With riveting insight and detail, Simon Winchester crafts a fascinating glimpse into one man's tortured mind and his contribution to another man's magnificent dictionary.

Summary And Analysis Of The Professor And The Madman A Tale Of Murder Insanity And The Making Of The Oxford English Dictionary

Author : Worth Books
ISBN : 9781504044233
Genre : Biography & Autobiography
File Size : 67. 49 MB
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So much to read, so little time? This brief overview of The Professor and the Madman tells you what you need to know—before or after you read Simon Winchester’s book. Crafted and edited with care, Worth Books set the standard for quality and give you the tools you need to be a well-informed reader. This short summary and analysis of The Professor and the Madman by Simon Winchester includes: Historical context Chapter-by-chapter summaries Detailed timeline of key events Important quotes Fascinating trivia Supporting material to enhance your understanding of the original work About The Professor and the Madman by Simon Winchester: Simon Winchester’s The Professor and the Madman is the remarkable tale of two Victorian-era scholars, the English language, and the making of the Oxford English Dictionary. Recounting the unlikely bond between a criminally insane American Civil War veteran and the renowned Scottish editor of the OED, the enchanting story of their relationship illuminates the decades of the dictionary’s compilation—from A to Z. Wittily eloquent and historically incisive, The Professor and the Madman is the portrait of a friendship and, by extension, of the greatest dictionary ever created in the English language. The summary and analysis in this ebook are intended to complement your reading experience and bring you closer to a great work of nonfiction.

The Meaning Of Everything

Author : Simon Winchester
ISBN : 0199813647
Genre : History
File Size : 30. 65 MB
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'The greatest enterprise of its kind in history,' was the verdict of British prime minister Stanley Baldwin in June 1928 when The Oxford English Dictionary was finally published. With its 15,490 pages and nearly two million quotations, it was indeed a monumental achievement, gleaned from the efforts of hundreds of ordinary and extraordinary people who made it their mission to catalogue the English language in its entirety. In The Meaning of Everything, Simon Winchester celebrates this remarkable feat, and the fascinating characters who played such a vital part in its execution, from the colourful Frederick Furnivall, cheerful promoter of an all-female sculling crew, to James Murray, self-educated son of a draper, who spent half a century guiding the project towards fruition. Along the way we learn which dictionary editor became the inspiration for Kenneth Grahame's Ratty in The Wind in the Willows, and why Tolkien found it so hard to define 'walrus'. Written by the bestselling author of The Surgeon of Crowthorne and The Map That Changed the World, The Meaning of Everything is an enthralling account of the creation of the world's greatest dictionary.

The Professor And The Madman Movie Tie In

Author : Simon Winchester
ISBN : 0062692291
Genre : Biography & Autobiography
File Size : 82. 14 MB
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New York Times Bestseller Simon Winchester’s classic about the making of the Oxford English Dictionary—soon to be a major motion picture starring Sean Penn and Mel Gibson. The making of the Oxford English Dictionary was one of the most ambitious projects ever undertaken. As definitions were collected, the overseeing committee, led by Professor James Murray, was stunned to discover that one man, Dr. W. C. Minor, had submitted more than ten thousand. But their surprise would pale in comparison to what they were about to discover when the committee insisted on honoring him. For Dr. Minor, an American Civil War veteran, was also an inmate at an asylum for the criminally insane. Masterfully researched and eloquently written, The Professor and the Madman is an extraordinary tale of madness, genius, and the incredible obsessions of two remarkable men that led to the making of the Oxford English Dictionary—and literary history. “The linguistic detective story of the decade.... Winchester does a superb job of historical research.”—William Safire, New York Times Magazine

Krakatoa

Author : Simon Winchester
ISBN : 9780062277466
Genre : Science
File Size : 52. 15 MB
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Simon Winchester, New York Times bestselling author of The Professor and the Madman, examines the legendary annihilation in 1883 of the volcano-island of Krakatoa, which was followed by an immense tsunami that killed nearly forty thousand people. The effects of the immense waves were felt as far away as France. Barometers in Bogotá and Washington, D.C., went haywire. Bodies were washed up in Zanzibar. The sound of the island's destruction was heard in Australia and India and on islands thousands of miles away. Most significant of all -- in view of today's new political climate -- the eruption helped to trigger in Java a wave of murderous anti-Western militancy among fundamentalist Muslims, one of the first outbreaks of Islamic-inspired killings anywhere. Krakatoa gives us an entirely new perspective on this fascinating and iconic event. This P.S. edition features an extra 16 pages of insights into the book, including author interviews, recommended reading, and more.

The Word Detective

Author : John Simpson
ISBN : 9781408706596
Genre : Biography & Autobiography
File Size : 39. 81 MB
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Language is always changing. No one knows where it is going but the best way to future-cast is to look at the past. John Simpson animates for us a tradition of researching and editing, showing us both the technical lexicography needed to understand a word, and the careful poetry needed to construct its definition. He challenges both the idea that dictionaries are definitive, and the notion that language is falling apart. With a sense of humour, an ability to laugh at bureaucracy and an inclination to question the status quo, John Simpson gives life to the colourful characters at the OED and to the English language itself. He splices his stories with entertaining and erudite diversions into the history and origin of words such as 'kangaroo', 'hot-dog' , 'pommie', 'bicycle' , not ignoring those swearwords often classed as 'Anglo-Saxon' ! The book will speak to anyone who uses a dictionary, 'word people' , history lovers, students and parents.

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