Collins dictionaries has announced that the inclusion of 2,000 new words in its forthcoming new edition means that some of the dustier corners of its lexicon will have to be swept into the semantic dustbin. Farewell embranglement, recrement, fusby and numerous others.
This will be a red rag to books bloggers everywhere. We know that a dictionary is not a phrasebook, but a repository of the expressive scope of the language. Most of our significant experience occurs in language, so if you lose a word the world shrinks. People who adopt foreign languages often talk about how their understanding of the world shifts with the new vocabulary, and the same thing is surely true of the history of language: if you want to know how people thought and felt in times past, looking at the words they used is your first port of call.
I got in touch with Collins’s press office where a spokesman did laugh fairly readily when I inquired whether he was serious, and conceded that this was a useful new spin on publicity for new dictionaries, drawing public attention from the usual focus on neologisms. But after a minor struggle to get a straight answer he did also say that these words were genuinely for the chop if they failed to secure enough public support.
Nell’articolo cui si Irvine si riferisce, e che potete leggere qui, si legge inoltre:
Cormac McKeown, senior editor for Collins’s English dictionaries, said that he wanted to squeeze in as many words as possible but the influx of 2,000 new words meant there was not enough space. “We’ve been fiddling around with the typeface to try to get more in, but it is at saturation point. There is a trade-off between getting them in and legibility.”
La soluzione, inverosimile per i più, è semplice: non usare la carta.
Postato da: IM