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From Sanscrit to Scouse, this is the most comprehensive, authoritative, and up-to-date single-volume source of information about the English language. Edited by one of the world's foremost authorities on the subject, this unique guide will be both essential for reference and fascinating for browsing. BLInternational perspective — from Cockney to Creole, Aboriginal English to Zummerzet, Estuary English to Caribbean English BLHistorical range — from Beowulf to Ebonics, Chaucer to Chomsky, Latin to the World Wide Web BLWide coverage of topics — from Abbreviation to Zeugma, Shakespeare to split infinitive BLSubstantial entries on key subjects such as African English, etymology, imperialism, Pidgin, poetry, psycholinguistics, sexism, and slang BLBox features include pieces on place-names, the evolution of the alphabet, the story of OK, borrowings into English, and the Internet