Friday, October 14, 2011

Dictionary Day

"And people laugh at me because I use big words. But if you have big ideas you have to use big words to express them, haven't you?"
-Lucy Maud Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables

Dictionary Day is a celebration of words, language, and the birth of Noah Webster on October 16, 1758. Here are Carnegie-Stout we have a fine collection of dictionaries, thesauri, and books on the the wonders of language. You can stop in to see our display on the yellow cart near the Recommendations Desk.

Highlights from the display include:
The Professor and the Madman: a tale of murder, insanity, and the making of the Oxford English Dictionary
by Simon Winchester (423 WIN)

Reading th
e OED: one man, one year, 21,730 pages by Ammon Shea (423.028 SHE)

Euphemania: our love affair with euphemisms by Ralphe Keyes (423.1 KEY)

The Man Who Made Lists: love, death, madness, and the creation of Roget's Thesaurus by Joshua Kendall (423.09 KEN)

The UnWord Dictionary: 1,000 words for things you didn't think had words! (428.1 KIE)

There are also many ways to celebrate Dictionary Day online!
The Oxford English Dictionary ( features a word of the day that you can sign up to follow by email or RSS.

Merriam-Webster Online ( has a selection of word games and vocabulary quizzes.

If you'd like to support charity while improving your vocabulary, try Free Rice ( The game is run by the United Nations World Food Programme, is free to play, and all money raised through advertising goes to feeding the world's hungry. Be warned, it's easy to spend a lot of time playing!

If you need a bit of a break from the computer, PBS Kids Go has tips for playing The Dictionary Game, fun for all ages! PBS is also home to one of my favorite cartoons: WordGirl!

WordGirl and Huggy are property of PBS, Scholastic, and Soup 2 Nuts.

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