Lederer on Language: A Celebration of English, Good Grammar, and Wordplay

By Richard Lederer

In this wide-ranging choice of essays, Richard Lederer deals readers extra of the irrepressible wordplay and linguistic excessive jinks his enthusiasts cannot get sufficient of, in addition to observations on a lifestyles in letters. From an inner-city lecture room to a wordy weekend retreat, from centuries-old etymological legacies to the newest in slang, dialects, and fadspeak, those essays shipping, tell, and entertain as in basic terms Lederer can. The booklet contains greater than 30 chapters, akin to A statement of Linguistic Independence, Our Uppity English Language, Etymological Snapshots, and Jest for the Pun of It.

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On November 14, in the course of a holiday within the negotiations, he was once invited by way of southern buddies to head undergo searching. Roosevelt felt that he may perhaps consolidate his help within the South by way of showing there within the comfortable surroundings of a looking get together, so he authorized the invitation. through the hunt, Roosevelt’s hosts cornered a undergo cub, and a advisor roped it to a tree for the president to kill. Roosevelt declined to shoot the cub, believing such an act to be underneath his dignity as a hunter and as a guy: “If I shot that little fellow I couldn’t be ready to glance my boys within the face back. ” That Sunday’s Washington publish carried a comic strip, drawn by means of Clifford Berryman (1869-1949), of President Theodore Roosevelt. T. R. stood in looking equipment, rifle in hand, and his again grew to become towards the cowering cub. The caption learn, “Drawing the road in Mississippi,” referring either to the border dispute and to animal ethics. Now the tale switches to the wilds of Brooklyn, long island. There Russian immigrants Morris and Rose Michtom owned a sweet shop the place they offered hand-crafted filled animals. encouraged via Berryman’s sketch, Rose Michtom made a toy undergo and displayed it within the store window. The undergo proved wildly well-liked by the general public. The Michtoms despatched President Roosevelt the very endure they'd installed their window. They stated it used to be intended for Roosevelt’s grandchildren and requested T. R. for permission to confer linguistic immortality upon him. The president spoke back, “I don’t recognize what my identify may possibly suggest to the endure enterprise yet you’re welcome to take advantage of it. ” Rose and Morris all started turning out filled cubs categorised Teddy’s endure, in honor of our twenty-sixth president. because the call for elevated, the kinfolk employed additional seamstresses and rented a warehouse. Their operation finally grew to become the fitting Toy company. The endure used to be a sought after logo in Roosevelt’s winning 1904 election crusade, and Teddy’s endure was once enshrined in dictionaries in 1907. Cartoonist Berryman by no means sought repayment for the numerous makes use of of the cub he had created. He easily smiled and acknowledged, “I have made millions of youngsters chuffed; that's sufficient for me. ” Stamp Out Fadspeak! a few humans lament that conversing and writing nowadays are easily a suite of faddish clichés patched jointly just like the sections of prefabricated homes made up of ticky-tacky. They see glossy verbal exchange as a senseless clacking of classy expressions, lots of them from video clips and tv sitcoms. Why is English parlance in this type of parlous country? probably it’s simply because verbal knee-jerkery calls for no concept. It’s lots more uncomplicated to not imagine, isn’t it? It’s lots more straightforward to cookie-cut the wealthy dough of the English language. It’s rather a lot more straightforward to microwave a frozen dinner than to create a meal from scratch. in spite of everything, once we have been teenagers, we enjoyed to drag the string at the doll that acknowledged a similar factor many times, time and again. That’s what fadspeak is—the unrelenting mixture of mimicry and gimmickry. Fadspeak includes fashion words that unexpectedly seem on everybody’s tongues—phrases that release one thousand lips.

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