Usage and Abusage; A Guide to Good English

Overview

An updated edition of a useful, entertaining guide to picking the right words (and avoiding the wrong ones).
Which is preferred - nom de plume, pseudonym, or pen name? What are neologisms, disguised conjunctions, and fused participles? Language enters into almost every part of human life and yet it is all too often misused: directness and clarity disappear in a whirl of clichés, euphemisms, and wooliness of expression.
Janet Whitcut has revised...

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Overview

An updated edition of a useful, entertaining guide to picking the right words (and avoiding the wrong ones).
Which is preferred - nom de plume, pseudonym, or pen name? What are neologisms, disguised conjunctions, and fused participles? Language enters into almost every part of human life and yet it is all too often misused: directness and clarity disappear in a whirl of clichés, euphemisms, and wooliness of expression.
Janet Whitcut has revised Eric Partridge's popular reference book to reflect the language of well-informed writers, readers, and speakers today. She has also added a section to the book entitled "Vogue Words," which includes words that have acquired a new power and influence.

"Janet Whitcut has revised Eric Partridge's classic desk reference so that it now reflects the language of the 90s while retaining Partridge's original wit...a practical, as well as entertaining, A-Z reference to correct usage."

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Editorial Reviews

Chattanooga Free Press
“Will be appreciated by language lovers, students, and writers. . . . It now reflects the language changes of the '90s, while retaining succinct and witty essays by Partridge on such subjects as ambiguity, euphemisms, jargon, negation, and puns. . . . A gem of linguistic information.”
Library Journal
The first edition of this book was published in 1942 and became a classic reference on the use of the English language. Whitcut has updated this edition for the 1990s but left much of Partridge's original wit and wisdom intact. She also kept many of his original examples and citations to other works, so this new edition still seems somewhat dated. That said, this style manual in dictionary form, interspersed with essays on various topics including "standard English," "jargon," and "euphemism", is by turns entertaining and informative. An updated list of vogue words includes such entries as "backlash," "crash," and "syndrome." This book would do well in reference for answering quick questions such as the difference between "can" and "may," both of which "express the idea of permission." It is also interesting to browse. Recommended for informed readers.-Lisa J. Cochenet, Winfield P.L., Ill.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780393317091
  • Publisher: Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
  • Publication date: 12/28/1997
  • Edition description: Revised edition
  • Pages: 400
  • Sales rank: 749,835
  • Product dimensions: 5.60 (w) x 8.30 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

The late Eric Partridge was the author of many classic books on the English language.

Janet Whitcut has contributed to many publications including The International Encyclopedia of Lexicography and The Oxford Thesaurus.

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