Friday, December 30, 2005

Balderdash & Piffle

BBC TWO - History - Programmes
in partnership with the Oxford English Dictionary.

browse their Word List
Join the OED–BBC Wordhunt! In conjunction with a major forthcoming BBC television series, the OED launches a new appeal for evidence of word use.
Did you eat a balti before 1984, or know how ska music got its name?

When did you first hear of a confrontation as handbags (at dawn, at ten paces)?

The OED and BBC would like your help: start your word hunting here!
Oxford English Dictionary word of the day

new lower subscription rates for OED Online.

new to me
Main Page - Wiktionary: "In the English edition, started on December 12, 2002, we are now working on 109,381 entries"

Saturday, December 17, 2005

Lute History

Julia Craig-McFeely thesis

Welcome to English Lute Manuscripts and Scribes 1530-1630.

Before you get excited about reading a thesis about lute music, this is not about the music. The work was undertaken as an examination of the context and composition of the English lute sources, and I hope that you will find it useful in providing information that you may not have considered before.

The thesis was written in 1992 and finally read and passed by my examiners in 1994, which means that it will almost certainly have some bits that you consider out-of-date. I have appended a paper written a couple of years after the completion ot the thesis, which discusses the symbolism of the lute, and adds yet another footnote to the long-running discussion regarding the decline of this wonderful instrument.

Thursday, December 15, 2005

December 2005 newsletter - Oxford English Dictionary

December 2005 newsletter - Oxford English Dictionary


In June this year the OED launched its new electronic
editing system, Pasadena (or more fully, the
optimistically named Perfect All-Singing All-Dancing
Editorial and Notation Application). The launch
marked the conclusion of a very successful project
with input from every member of the department at
the different stages of consultation, design,
development, testing, and training. In particular the
success of the project owed much to the close and
happy collaboration between the Pasadena project
team, led by Laura Elliott, Michael Proffitt, and Tom
Gilmore, and the team of French software developers
from IDM, led by Alban Fonrouge, Philippe Climent,
and Marc Ariberti, which resulted in not only a
wonderful new system but also a whole new
vocabulary of Franglais for the OED. Thanks to the
efforts of all involved, the go-live period went very
smoothly. In the period since Chief Editor John
Simpson made the first ceremonial edits in the entry
for the noun panache, almost three thousand entries
have been edited in Pasadena, and the first batch of
entries has been extracted for publication.
The Pasadena project involved not only the creation of
a new computer system, but also the conversion of the
entire electronic text of the OED (containing
approximately a quarter of a million entries) and the
huge ‘Incomings’ database from the Dictionary’s
reading programmes (containing two million
quotations), into XML . .

Friday, December 09, 2005

Great Big Band > DR Big Band

listening to
Jazz Live - med Embla
En optagelse fra Salon K i Huset under
Copenhagen Jazz Festival 2005 med
gruppen Embla, som spiller musik af
bassisten Niels Præstholm. born 1958 i Århus
Tilrettelæggelse: Ole Matthiessen.
CD: Niels Pr�stholm & Embla Nordic Project -

Præstholm, som er halvt færing, har skrevet et bestillingsværk til Torshavn over færøsk folkemusik. Værket indspilles dec. af Embla Nordic + gæster.

-Der er noget sang, der er specielt for Færøerne. I de små bygder på udstederne har man haft en stærk religion, hvor den strenge Kingo har været den foretrukne salmedigter - død, straf og skæbne - den lyse Grundtvig slog aldrig rigtigt an deroppe.

Men melodierne begyndte at forandre sig gennem årene, fordi de ikke havde noget orgel.
(they were an impoveished danish colony for centuries)

Det blev fuldstændig rubato og med glissader på næsten alle stavelser - det kan næsten lyde som en nordafrikansk moské.

Præstholm er en mand som har antennerne ude mange steder også organisatorisk i Dansk Jazzforbund og Copenhagen JazzHouse. Han fik ingen forhåndsoplysninger om de valgte musikeksempler.

I wondered if he was one of my studentsfrom the Faroes

How to Write Bad Poetry

BBC - h2g2 -

Say not that you are bad at writing good poetry,
Say instead that you are good at writing bad poetry

bad poems - Google Search

Bad poetry index: "There is a huge amount of bad poetry in the world. Although new bad poems are being written by the hundreds every day (many of them in university creative writing classes), most bad poetry is simply weak and ineffectual and lacking in interest and (fortunately) is soon forgotten.

To achieve memorable badness is not so easy. It has to be done innocently, by a poet unaware of his or her defects. The right combination of lofty ambition, humorless self-confidence, and crass incompetence is rare and precious. (There is a famous anthology of bad poetry called The Stuffed Owl, which I recommend to those interested.) "
Seamus Cooney
Studies in Verse / The Nature of Poetry

William McGonagall (1825 or 1830-1902), leading contender for the title of the world's worst poet
William McGonagall - Google Search

Thursday, December 08, 2005

podcasting - Google Search

podcasting - Google Search

word of the year 2005? for some -
the editors of the New Oxford American Dictionary have selected "podcast" as the Word of the Year for 2005

Here is the most accurate and richly descriptive picture of American English ever offered in any dictionary. Oxford's American editors drew on our 200-million-word databank of contemporary North American English, plus the unrivaled citation files of the world-renowned Oxford English Dictionary. We started with American evidence--an unparalleled resource unique to Oxford. Our staff logged more than 50 editor-years, checking every entry and every definition. Oxford's ongoing North American Reading Program, begun in the early 1980s, keeps our lexicographers in touch with fresh evidence of our language and usage--in novels and newspapers, in public records and magazines, and on-line, too.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Ordbog over det danske Sprog på nettet

ODS på nettet ON LINE AT LAST !!!the great dictionary in 28 volumes of the danish language from 1700 to 1950

Ordbog over det danske sprog - Wikipedia

Umlaut - history

Umlaut - Wikipedia: "Originally, umlaut was denoted in written German by adding an e to the affected vowel, either after the vowel or, in small form, above it. (In medieval German manuscripts, other digraphs could also be written using superscripts: in bluome ('flower'), for example, the "o" was frequently placed above the "u".)

In blackletter handwriting as used in German manuscripts of the later Middle Ages, and also in many printed texts of the early modern period, the superscript "e" still had a form which would be recognisable to us as an . However, in the forms of handwriting which emerged in the early modern period (of which Sütterlin is the latest and best known example), the letter had two strong vertical lines, and the superscript looked like two tiny strokes. Gradually these strokes were reduced to dots, and as early as the 16th century we find this handwritten convention being transferred sporadically to printed texts too"