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Title: Clerks to the Language - The Twentieth Century New Zealand Lexicographers of English
Contributor(s): Ryan, John S  (author)
Publication Date: 1989
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Abstract: "If we consider what... the Oxford School of English owes to the Antipodes, to the Southern Hemisphere, especially to scholars born in Australia and New Zealand, it may well be felt that it is only just that one of them should now ascend an Oxford chair of English." --J. R. R. Tolkien, Valedictory 1959. "We know that our language, or at least our speech, differs discernibly from English... All in all we have no powerful motive for throwing up scholars to explore what we have done and are doing to the imperial language. We are observed instead by New Zealanders. Take away what Eric Partridge. S. J. Baker, W. S. Rarnson, G. W. Turner and Grahame Johnston... have written about the English language in Australia, and there is not much left. All of them came to this country from New Zealand." --K. S. Inglis, 2 (1977: 99 - 100). The first part of the article title is a quotation, in fact the title of an essay from Israel Shenker (1977), a work subtitled 'Wizards of Language - ancient, mediaeval and modern'. The book's own short. title, 'Harmless Drudges', itself echoed Samuel Johnson's mocking self-description and derisive comment on lexicographers. Shenker's purpose in the evocative caption was to alert the reader to the men who had followed Johnson and to suggest by the seeming deprecation that he would be offering sharp-edged, provocative and entertaining sketches of some of thee men. included amongst them are Eric Partridge (1894-1979) (115-120) and the still living Robert W. Burchfield (84-95), but there is no chapter heading identifying their own common country of origin - New Zealand.
Publication Type: Journal Article
Source of Publication: Studia Anglica Posnaniensia: International Review of English Studies, v.XXII [22], p. 3-29
Publisher: Wydawnictwo Naukowe Uniwersytetu im. Adama Mickiewicza
Place of Publication: Poland
ISSN: 0081-6272
Field of Research (FOR): 160403 Social and Cultural Geography
160810 Urban Sociology and Community Studies
160807 Sociological Methodology and Research Methods
Socio-Economic Outcome Codes: 899999 Information and Communication Services not elsewhere classified
950306 Conserving Pacific Peoples Heritage
950505 Understanding New Zealands Past
Peer Reviewed: Yes
HERDC Category Description: C1 Refereed Article in a Scholarly Journal
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Appears in Collections:Journal Article

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