Skip to main content

What is Fowler’s Modern English?

A Dictionary of Modern English Usage (1926), by Henry W. Fowler (1858–1933), is a style guide to British English usage, pronunciation, and writing. Ranging from plurals and literary technique to the distinctions among like words (homonyms, synonyms, etc.), to foreign-term use, it became the standard for most style guides that followed and remains in print.  source
Fowler's legacy is claimed by both the descriptivist and prescriptivist  schools of linguistics. David Crystal (perhaps the leading descriptivist) has written the introduction to the new edition.

A version of this post is included in 50 FAQ about English  ($1.75)

A Dictionary of Modern English Usage: Classic First Edition 
Begat: The King James Bible and the English Language

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Why is English not the official language of England?

58 countries list English as an official language - but not the UK. 

Which countries do not have an official language?

According to Henry Hitchings Language Wars (2011) these nations do not currently have an official primary language:

What is 'concept creep'?

Concept creep a term coined to describe 'psychology's expanding concepts of harm and pathology'. 
by applying concepts of abuse, bullying, and trauma to less severe and clearly defined actions and events, and by increasingly including subjective elements into them, concept creep may release a flood of unjustified accusations and litigation, as well as excessive and disproportionate enforcement regimes.   The concepts of abuse, bullying, trauma, mental disorder, addiction, and prejudice ... {have been subjected to historical changes}. In each case, the concept's boundary has stretched and its meaning has dilated. SourceThis trend towards a very broad definition of what constitutes 'harm' has been particularly pronounced on university campuses in the USA and - to a lesser extent - in the UK.



See Conor Friedersdorf's Atlantic essay, 'How Americans Became So Sensitive to Harm'

Download English FAQ Teaching Pack for only £1.99