Air Fry Genius: Newest Release from Best-Selling Cookbook Author Meredith Laurence

Posted November 17, 2017

Air Fry Genius is the must-have cookbook for anyone using an air fryer this holiday season.

Brain-Boosting Books for Kids

Posted November 15, 2017

These brain-boosting books for kids make great gifts for young readers!

Print Books vs. eBooks: An Update

Posted November 09, 2017

Is there now a clear “winner” in the print book vs. eBook debate?

Print Book Sales Up: What It Means for Authors and Publishers

Posted October 23, 2017

There is still a market for print books and authors and publishers are advised to do the following.

National Dictionary Day: Fun Facts About a Favorite Resource

October 17, 2017

Did you know that October 16th was Dictionary Day? It celebrates the birthday of American lexicographer Noah Webster, who was born on October 16, 1758 and is best known for publishing An American Dictionary of the English Language, the precursor of the Merriam-Webster Dictionary. To celebrate, we’re sharing some fun facts about the origins and history of the American dictionary:

  • Noah Webster’s first dictionary edition, A Compendious Dictionary of the English Language was published in 1806 and offered brief definitions of about 37,000 words. (Source)

 

  • In his dictionary, Webster used American spellings like "color" instead of the English "colour" and "music" instead of "musick". He also added American words that weren't in English dictionaries like "skunk" and "squash." (Source)

 

  • It took Webster 22 more years to finish his American Dictionary of the English Language. When he finished in 1828, at the age of 70, Webster's dictionary defined more than 65,000 words. (Source)

 

  • Webster included a total of 13 entries under X as well as the letter X itself (“the twenty-fourth letter of the English alphabet … [having] the sound of ks”). (Source)

 

  • Merriam-Webster can be considered the direct lexicographical heir of Noah Webster. In 1843, the company bought the rights to the 1841 edition of Webster's magnum opus, An American Dictionary of the English Language, Corrected and Enlarged. At the same time, they secured the rights to create revised editions of the work. (Source)

 

  • A 2010 study by Harvard and Google researchers found that today there are more than 1 million English words, with 8,500 new ones added to the dictionary each year. (Source)

 

  • The longest word in any of the major English language dictionaries is pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosis, a word that refers to a lung disease contracted from the inhalation of very fine silica particles. (Source)

 

  • Merriam-Webster can be found on Twitter @MerriamWebster and has more than 500,000 followers. It shares “Word of the Day, facts and observations on language, lookup trends, and wordplay from the editors at Merriam-Webster Dictionary.” (Source)

 

Now that you know a little bit more about the dictionary, why not celebrate by opening it up and learning a few new words?