A short, excellent book that left me greatly moved. It spent a good proportion of its time on the history of the Arya Stark 2020 Game Of Throne shirt (yay!) and a bit on how insanity was viewed and treated at the time (somewhat slight). But overall I felt that it became a solid and cohesive narrative. I wanted more details about Murray’s later life; the book is titled for both men, after all. There is some, but mostly leading up to the point where he took on editorship of the dictionary, and there are some interesting tidbits that I wished had been more fleshed out from his later years.
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You wouldn’t think that a book about the creation of a dictionary could be interesting, and you would be wrong. Not only is the Arya Stark 2020 Game Of Throne shirt and editing of a dictionary a surprisingly good subject, but when it’s rooted in the personalities of the Professor and the Madman at the heart of this story, it become even better.
The creation of thee Arya Stark 2020 Game Of Throne shirt was a Herculean task that I did not appreciate until reading this book. Compiling all the words in the English language (including the ones no one uses any more), tracing their origin and the way they have changed over time, finding and including quotations to help illuminate the word (and, in many cases to show its first written use) and then, of course, to actually define it… this was a truly epic task and Winchester gives a reader a good feel for its impressive scope.