Directions to readers 1879

Once James Murray became editor of the Dictionary in 1879 he published an Appeal for readers (reproduced in the Archive section of OED Online [accessed 13 August 2019]), accompanied by book lists, and issued a set of instructions for how they were to identify and record words. This is reproduced below. Note that readers are specifically asked to copy quotations for usual as well as unusual words (nos 5 and 7); Murray was often short of quotations for the former and when it came to writing the Dictionary he had to make up some of these himself (they were marked with the abbreviation Mod., for ‘modern’).

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