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Chambers 13th edition dictionary
Posted: 17 April 2014 02:21 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 16 ]
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I don’t quite understand why you would think it’s “clumsily cobbled together”. Lethologica was cited in two dictionaries that I’m aware of.  I would not categorize it as a nonce or novelty word.

It’s not in the OED.

A search of the PubMed database turns up no medical journals that use the term.

A search of JSTOR turns up one use of the term, in a 2002 poem in the American Poetry Review.

This pretty much encapsulates what being a nonce or novelty word is.

If indeed Jung coined the term (the Wikipedia article contains no citations of sources, which is a warning flag), the word might have some currency in German medical/psychological circles, but apparently not in English.

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Posted: 17 April 2014 02:34 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 17 ]
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kurwamac - 17 April 2014 01:55 PM
Both of those words could well be described as ‘clumsily cobbled together’ because they show a flagrant disregard for how English words have been coined historically. They’ve been created by people who don’t realise that their nodding acquaintance with Greek and Latin is something to hide, not flaunt openly, as is their tin ear. Rather similar to the way I imagine at least a few of the Chambers editors.

I disagree entirely. Are you familiar with James Murray’s knowledge of Greek? Are you saying that Murray demonstrates a flagrant disregard for how English words have been coined?  How are English words put together?  Why, for example, was lethologica more clumsily put together than other words? I’m very curious.

My comment isn’t about lethologica or ultracrepidarian, those were just examples. There are numerous other words that are now obsolete, but certainly are not considered clumsily put together. 

My initial posting was to seek information on Chambers, a dictionary, from what I’ve read, that retains a lot of these unusual words that other dictionaries don’t.

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Posted: 17 April 2014 02:48 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 18 ]
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What does Murray’s knowledge of Greek have to do with it?

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Posted: 17 April 2014 03:01 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 19 ]
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Dave Wilton - 17 April 2014 02:21 PM

I don’t quite understand why you would think it’s “clumsily cobbled together”. Lethologica was cited in two dictionaries that I’m aware of.  I would not categorize it as a nonce or novelty word.

It’s not in the OED.

A search of the PubMed database turns up no medical journals that use the term.

A search of JSTOR turns up one use of the term, in a 2002 poem in the American Poetry Review.

This pretty much encapsulates what being a nonce or novelty word is.

If indeed Jung coined the term (the Wikipedia article contains no citations of sources, which is a warning flag), the word might have some currency in German medical/psychological circles, but apparently not in English.

It is listed in the unabridged Webster’s New International second edition. If I’m not mistaken a nonce word is a word that is used only once and is usually not entered in dictionaries.

Regardless, Dave, I was just looking for an evaluation on Chambers. I have to assume that nobody on this forum thinks highly of this dictionary.

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Posted: 17 April 2014 03:07 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 20 ]
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[

quote author="kurwamac" date="1397792911"]What does Murray’s knowledge of Greek have to do with it?

Read Aldiboronti’s post No. 12.

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Posted: 17 April 2014 03:46 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 21 ]
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Murray coined nonce-word, not lethologica, so his knowledge of Greek is irrelevant to the question at hand.

From the OED:

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nonce-word n.  [one of a number of terms coined by James Murray especially for use in the N.E.D.> a word apparently used only ‘for the nonce’, i.e. on one specific occasion or in one specific text or writer’s works.

A nonce word is not limited to one single use. It can be used in reference to particular event, or by a single writer in multiple works.

[ Edited: 17 April 2014 03:52 PM by Dave Wilton ]
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Posted: 17 April 2014 04:22 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 22 ]
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Dave Wilton - 17 April 2014 03:46 PM
Murray coined nonce-word, not lethologica, so his knowledge of Greek is irrelevant to the question at hand.

From the OED:

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nonce-word n.  [one of a number of terms coined by James Murray especially for use in the N.E.D.> a word apparently used only ‘for the nonce’, i.e. on one specific occasion or in one specific text or writer’s works.

A nonce word is not limited to one single use. It can be used in reference to particular event, or by a single writer in multiple works.

I misread Aldiboronti’s post. Too quick to respond and my apologies to Kurwamac.  Dave, I have no idea who coined lethologica, but it is in one of my dictionaries. Regardless, as I asked Aldiboronti, what makes a word “clumsily cobbled together”? Why does lethologica have less credence than other words? It seems a fairly interesting word, and the derivation of the word seems pretty logical.

Again, I mentioned the two words as examples of words no longer entered in dictionaries, and I thought Chambers was one of the few dictionaries that would carry these obsolete words. Before I purchase the dictionary I thought someone on this forum might be familiar with the book.

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Posted: 17 April 2014 05:33 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 23 ]
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It’s not the logos part that’s the problem: the -ica is. One reason why it seems clumsily cobbled together is that it would be more usual to end the name of a condition to end in -gia rather than -gica.

Perhaps Jung rather overstepped his lass (his jungfrau, I suppose) in composing that load of cobblers.

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Posted: 17 April 2014 06:22 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 24 ]
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Seems a pity that this serious, debilitating disorder suffered by 9 out of 10 people doesn’t have a telethon.

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Posted: 18 April 2014 03:51 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 25 ]
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Why does lethologica have less credence than other words? It seems a fairly interesting word, and the derivation of the word seems pretty logical.

There are plenty of “malformed” words from Greek and Latin roots. The problem with this one is that no one has ever really used it. It’s a novelty word.

Back in the 1980s, comedian Rich Hall did a bit about sniglets, his name for names for things that don’t have names but should. He came up with hundreds of sniglets, mostly humorous. He filled books with them. To my knowledge, no one ever used one of his sniglets except in reference back to one of Hall’s sniglet books. Dictionaries usually don’t include such words because doing so gives a false impression about the language. Putting them in a dictionary would make people think they actually have or had some kind of currency.

The more common term for what lethologica describes is aphasia, although that would seem to cover a broader spectrum than just a temporary forgetting of words.

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Posted: 18 April 2014 05:15 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 26 ]
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OP Tipping - 17 April 2014 05:33 PM
It’s not the logos part that’s the problem: the -ica is. One reason why it seems clumsily cobbled together is that it would be more usual to end the name of a condition to end in -gia rather than -gica.

To say nothing of the intrusive O binding the two parts together, a sign that the coiner has no knowledge of Greek, and a tin ear. I think Dave may be exaggerating slightly when he says that many words blessed by common use are badly formed; offhand, ‘psychoanalysis’ springs to mind (that same intrusive O problem), and ‘homophobia’, and I’m sure a few more, but they are relatively few, and mostly coined in the modern era, when actual knowledge of the classical languages was increasingly uncommon. We may have to reconcile ourselves to their existence, but there’s no reason to encourage more of them by accepting them as normal.

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Posted: 18 April 2014 07:20 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 27 ]
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Do all large dictionaries contain etymologies and archaic words?

Yes.

You’re probably more familiar than I, but my American Heritage does not

You must have some sort of pocket version; the “real” AHD (publisher’s page) has perhaps the best etymologies of any American dictionary, not to mention being a gorgeous book—I highly recommend it.

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Posted: 18 April 2014 07:43 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 28 ]
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Yes, there is a pocket version that omits the etymologies and the appendix on Indo-European roots. It is confusingly titled The American Heritage Dictionary, Fourth Edition, as opposed to the larger The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition. (There is a paperback fifth edition with the same differentiation in title, but I’m not sure how the contents differ.)

The American Heritage’s appendix on IE roots alone makes it a must-have purchase for anyone interested in etymology. (The appendix is also available as a stand-alone book.) It’s a “college” dictionary, though, and doesn’t have the number of entries that the larger ones we’ve been discussing have.

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Posted: 18 April 2014 08:01 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 29 ]
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This delightfully contentious thread (bordering, as it does at times, on acrimony) gives me the opportunity to describe it with a word I’ve been aware of for many years, but have never had a chance to use: logomachy. It’s thrilling to see how worked-up posters can get, about a word or two. All Logophile does is express a predilection for a particular dictionary, and ask for opinions—and presto! the dust starts to fly. Logophile, your username is the best chosen of all. We’re all more or less passionate word-lovers here, or word-haters, as the case may be. Wordorigins.org for ever! per argue-a ad astra!

;-)

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Posted: 18 April 2014 12:21 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 30 ]
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Why I both love and hate Chambers:

I compiled my first crosswords with the aid of a Chambers dictionary that bore the date of 1972, and which I acquired for £2 some years later. It is probably the worst dictionary qua dictionary that I’ve ever owned, but there’s a lot to be said for it as a random bag of oddities.

The 2003 edition on my lap is an even more random bag of oddities. I have allowed it to fall open at page 814. There I am confronted by kiaugh, alternate spelling kaugh, a Scottish word for trouble. Not, I suspect, one of the more widely used words: most Google hits seem to be repeating definitions of it. Below that, two entries for kibble, considered separate words: the noun ‘bucket’ and the verb ‘to grind’. No mention of it in the only sense I’ve encountered it in real life: dry food for animals. Kight appears as a Spenserian alternate spelling for kite; surely anyone who reads Spenser, and I believe there may be three such. consults the OED for this sort of thing.

Then kilfud-yoking catches my eye, and it gets fewer than a thousand hits on Google, but some of them are real hits: examples where the phrase is actually used. And I can forgive it everything.

Still, it falls short as an actual dictionary.

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