Monday, December 08, 2008

Oxford dictionary eradicates words associated with Christianity and British history

Cranmer is having one of his incandescent moments, which are rare, but quite vehement when they occur. It transpires that Oxford University Press has decided to eradicate from its Junior Dictionary words associated with Christianity, the monarchy and British traditions and history.

Thus words like ‘bishop’, ‘abbey’, ‘chapel, ‘saint’, ‘empire’ and ‘coronation’ have been expunged along with many which related to the countryside, like ‘moss’, ‘willow’, ‘fern’, ‘buttercup’, ‘heather’, ‘sycamore’ and ‘mistletoe’.

In order to make the dictionary ‘more relevant’ to the town-dwelling, multi-faith, multi-cultural internet-dominated, celebrity-obsessed, and ADD-afflicted generation, words like ‘blog’, ‘broadband’, ‘MP3 player’, ‘voicemail’ and ‘celebrity’ are supplanting those which may explain and educate them on their country’s Christian heritage and cultural traditions.

And with supreme irony yet of immense political significance, ‘monarch’ has been erased while ‘EU’ enters for the first time.

It is an insidious agenda indeed which seeks to inculcate the nation’s most vulnerable and impressionable minds with the supremacy of the European Union over the monarchy of the United Kingdom. While the former becomes ‘more relevant’, the latter is irrelevant to the point of non-definition

Professor Alan Smithers, Director of the Centre for Education and Employment at Buckingham University, said: "We have a certain Christian narrative which has given meaning to us over the last 2,000 years. To say it is all relative and replaceable is questionable. The word selections are a very interesting reflection of the way childhood is going, moving away from our spiritual background and the natural world and towards the world that information technology creates for us."

In a nation in which 70 per cent of the population identified themselves at the last census as Christian, either by faith or culture, the eradication of so many words associated with the faith will have an undoubted detrimental effect on the children in all those primary schools who use the dictionary. Such a crucial educational tool has an obligation to be prescriptive in preserving the richness of the English language and permitting children’s understanding of their heritage and the world around them.

Vineeta Gupta, is head of children's dictionaries at Oxford University Press. She wholeheartedly justifies the bowdlerisation, declaring: "When you look back at older versions of dictionaries, there were lots of examples of flowers for instance. That was because many children lived in semi-rural environments and saw the seasons. Nowadays, the environment has changed. We are also much more multicultural. People don't go to Church as often as before. Our understanding of religion is within multiculturalism, which is why some words such as ‘Pentecost’ or ‘Whitsun’ would have been in 20 years ago but not now."

Well, Ms Gupta, not all children are concrete-dwelling, tarmac-loitering ignoramuses. Indeed, tens of thousands not only live in rural environments, they positively embrace it, and some of those in industrial areas also yearn for it. And have you not considered that even those who live in towns may yet still observe the changing of seasons? What, pray, is more ‘multicultural’ this year than last about the British state? And what proportion of the population takes its understanding of religion from this multiculturalism?

Ah, Ms Gupta, one wonders if you yourself have an agenda here.

For have you not noticed, in your observation that church attendance is declining and your strange assertion that the changing of the seasons may no longer be observed, that we still have a monarch, notwithstanding that the word has been excised from your tome?

Cranmer is displeased to list those words which have been eradicated:

Carol, cracker, holly, ivy, mistletoe (that’s Christmas gone).

Dwarf, elf, goblin (that’s the understanding of mythology and fairy-tales diminished).

Abbey, aisle, altar, bishop, chapel, christen, disciple, minister, monastery, monk, nun, nunnery, parish, pew, psalm, pulpit, saint, sin, devil, vicar (that’s the Christian narrative deleted).

Coronation, duchess, duke, emperor, empire, monarch, decade (that’s royalty and empire expunged).

Adder, ass, beaver, boar, budgerigar, bullock, cheetah, colt, corgi, cygnet, doe, drake, ferret, gerbil, goldfish, guinea pig, hamster, heron, herring, kingfisher, lark, leopard, lobster, magpie, minnow, mussel, newt, otter, ox, oyster, panther, pelican, piglet, plaice, poodle, porcupine, porpoise, raven, spaniel, starling, stoat, stork, terrapin, thrush, weasel, wren (that’s an appreciation of the infinite variety of wildlife denied).

Acorn, allotment, almond, apricot, ash, bacon, beech, beetroot, blackberry, blacksmith, bloom, bluebell, bramble, bran, bray, bridle, brook, buttercup, canary, canter, carnation, catkin, cauliflower, chestnut, clover, conker, county, cowslip, crocus, dandelion, diesel, fern, fungus, gooseberry, gorse, hazel, hazelnut, heather, holly, horse chestnut, ivy, lavender, leek, liquorice, manger, marzipan, melon, minnow, mint, nectar, nectarine, oats, pansy, parsnip, pasture, poppy, porridge, poultry, primrose, prune, radish, rhubarb, sheaf, spinach, sycamore, tulip, turnip, vine, violet, walnut, willow (that’s the British countryside erased).

And Cranmer is disturbed to see the new words included:

Blog, broadband, MP3 player, voicemail, attachment, database, export, chatroom, bullet point, cut and paste, analogue.

Celebrity, tolerant, vandalism, negotiate, interdependent, creep, citizenship, childhood, conflict, common sense, debate, EU, drought, brainy, boisterous, cautionary tale, bilingual, bungee jumping, committee, compulsory, cope, democratic, allergic, biodegradable, emotion, dyslexic, donate, endangered, Euro.

Apparatus, food chain, incisor, square number, trapezium, alliteration, colloquial, idiom, curriculum, classify, chronological, block graph.

The Orwellian agenda speaks for itself, though doubtless Ms Gupta will deny it. The elimination of words like ‘bacon’ or ‘piglet’ is doubtless one of her sops to ‘multiculturalism’.

Do schoolchildren no longer live in counties? Do they no longer keep hamsters or goldfish? Do they not sing carols or pull crackers at Christmas? Do they not eat bacon? Do they no longer play conkers?

Cranmer is simply appalled, and exhorts all rural and faith schools to boycott this deficient dictionary on the grounds that it has ceased to be relevant to the culture and education of the children in their charge.


Anonymous G Eagle Esq said...

A dose of unEmployment or its prospect can bring forth some Economic Realism even amongst your friends amongst Trendy-Left Labour MPs in Marginal Constituencies

I remain your Grace's obedient servant etc

G Eagle

PS Embarrrasssed shufffling from left to right talon .... and back

Allowances must of course be made for your inCorporeal State - singeing sure diminishes one's Greek Grammar

BUT Shouldn't it be ignoramoi - ignoramus being a Latinized version of the Greek Expression "Ignoramos"

Next your Grace might be misdirecting your Communicants into the shocking, heretical belief that the plural of prospectus is prospecti

8 December 2008 at 09:06  
Anonymous G Eagle Esq said...

Whooops - I seem to have lost the beginning of my Comment :

Surely the way to penetrate the arrogance of these intellectual superficialities is simply for us to "Vote with our Wallets" and NOT to buy this wRetched Dictionary

Then it would soon go out of print and Ms Gupta and her fellow-employees will lose their jobs unless they revise the Dictionary in line with more sensible ideas


8 December 2008 at 09:12  
Blogger Ken said...

Aside from the rape & pillage of our language heritage, I am bemused at the withdrawal of still-common words.


..And do kids not keep hamsters, guinea pigs or buggeryjars any more?!

8 December 2008 at 09:44  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Some new words which Ms Gupta will no doubt include in her next review-
These crafty weasels don't throw out Christian words and immediately replace them, but will do so over a period of time.

8 December 2008 at 09:56  
Blogger Stop Common Purpose said...

All part of the Common Purpose plan.

8 December 2008 at 10:16  
Anonymous Troy said...

I think it's quite disturbing to see the two lists side by side.

If this isn't an example of the Great Clunking Fingers of the state prying where they don't belong, then I don't know what is...

8 December 2008 at 10:18  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Can anyway tell us sioutatiif they include termination abotion foetus or std?

8 December 2008 at 10:39  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


word verification got caught up there

can anyone tell us if they include

8 December 2008 at 10:41  
Anonymous Rebel Saint said...

Don't just post a comment, time for "affirmative action" (bet that's in the dictionary, along with positive discrimination!). Just phoned to register my complaint. They were all "in a meeting" but someone will phone back!

Will be asking the governors at my children's school which dictionary they intend to use in future.

Wouldn't be interesting if all the church schools were to withdraw their dealings with OUP? Wouldn't it be courageous if some senior CofE Bishop or Board of Education spokesperson called upon all Church schools to boycott them? But then "Courage" is a word that seems to have been deleted from the their dictionary.

8 December 2008 at 10:45  
Blogger ProudOfMyHeritage said...

Thank you Cranmer for taking the trouble to List all of the feared words - I can now make sure that my children know all of them!

8 December 2008 at 10:51  
Blogger ProudOfMyHeritage said...

...and they can test their friends

8 December 2008 at 10:58  
Blogger Sue said...

Ms Gupta should be sacked!

What a depressing list of words she wants to add and what a beautiful list of words she wants removed.

So much for integration and teaching "Britishness"..

She ought to be replaced by someone who is proud to be British, she obviously is not!

8 December 2008 at 11:39  
Blogger ENGLISHMAN said...

It is a curious fact that in marxist britain aliens are employed,who while being incapable of providing any remedy to thier own third world ignorance and deprivations in thier own countries,are instant geniuses the moment thier feet touch our shores,and are conversant with every aspect of our first world society,and when there are five major newspapers written in English in india,that the moment they arrive they all need interpreters,it is high time that we looked to our own peoples welfare and let johnny foreigner attend to his.

8 December 2008 at 12:00  
Anonymous rome alone said...

Not the first time English elites have looked to erase all trace of their religious heritage. Your Grace should know about that.

8 December 2008 at 12:44  
Anonymous Nelson said...

Perhaps I am becoming a conspiracy theorist! but the interesting question is when does a theory stop being a theory and become a conspiracy fact? As I recall our history books have been edited and re-written to avoid upsetting our 'fellow' Europeans, (the re-enactment of the battle of Trafalger was as I recall not between England, France & Spain but between the Reds & the Blues) since then every area of our British heritage has been attacked
by a self serving bunch of traitors
that would make Wiliam Joyce look like a patriot. Now our monarchy & even our language is under threat, where will it all end? I shudder to think. We need some red blooded men who will stand up to Napoleon & his piggy brothers from Animal Farm, or has the words animal & farm been deleted from our newspeak
dictionaries as well? You couldn't make it up!.

8 December 2008 at 13:00  
Anonymous Puis X said...

Were the words
Justification by faith
Church of Scoland
Church of England
John Knox
Patrick Hamilton
Rangers FC
Arthur Borac

removed -if not get them out Ms Gupta.

8 December 2008 at 13:26  
Blogger len.allan said...

So satans insidious agenda advances,
But God also has an agenda and I have read the ending!

8 December 2008 at 13:33  
Blogger Chalcedon said...

My God daughter's fiance, now aged 20, is totally oblivious to the meaning of language when literary or biblical allusions are referred to. He simply says he doesn't understand. He's not stupid, just woefully ignorant after 13 years of schooling. He is a website designer and code writer in the IT business.

8 December 2008 at 14:00  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

We are being dismantled, and we are doing absolutely nothing about it. Maybe we deserve it.

I have to make an awful confession, and that is in my frustration I have fantasised about cyclon B and gas chambers.

8 December 2008 at 14:01  
OpenID curly15 said...

I empathise and share your concerns, is the word 'chav' in there? Next editor?

8 December 2008 at 14:27  
Blogger Newmania said...

There is something sinister here , something just out of view a monster lurking at the peripheries , I almost see its hideous snout .

8 December 2008 at 14:30  
Blogger McKenzie said...

Its shocking isn't it? You would think by now that some kind of movement or rebel political party would have formed to warn us about what is coming.

Warning: please make sure you have taken your mind control pills before viewing THIS VIDEO CLIP

8 December 2008 at 14:32  
Anonymous shaven-headed tattooed knuckledragger said...

... and some more words for the next edition:

Dhimmi, Harbi, Jahiliyya, Jizya, Kuffar, Mufa’ khathat, Murtad, Najis, Shariah, Taqiyya

8 December 2008 at 15:00  
Blogger Christian-Jedi-Alliance said...


Our Lady of Victory

8 December 2008 at 15:31  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Nelson said...
Perhaps I am becoming a conspiracy theorist! but the interesting question is when does a theory stop being a theory and become a conspiracy fact?"

I know what you mean. I have always been aware of the NWO conspiracy theory and all it entails. While I find it interesting I have never taken it 100% seriously.
In the last few years this vile regime that passes for a democratic government appears to be doing all it can to confirm this conspiracy is true. This latest news from Cranmer just smacks of Newspeak.

I just don't know what to think any more, but I am certain of one thing, we are being taken down the wrong road and we must halt, before we descend into chaos.

8 December 2008 at 15:37  
Blogger cambstreasurer said...

If the poor little blighters really never get to see gerbils or budgies (let alone fern, moss & heron) that in itself is a national tragedy.

8 December 2008 at 15:55  
Blogger Wrinkled Weasel said...

Do you know how we won the war with Germany? No, not the Americans. And not just the bravery of young men and women who believed in something either. We won the war because a lot of very clever people at Oxford and Cambridge thought up clever ways to thwart the might of the Third Reich.

Whenever they had a code or a secret mission or a device,it got called by a classical name. They had a lexicon of ideas and concepts that are no longer available to us. They thought in ways our children could not. They were Chess Players, Mathematicians, Classical Scholars,Literary Critics and Clergy. They had at their command The Canon, a term despised by the impoverished and decadent hoi-polloi that current infest Oxbridge, but it was a body of work that reflected the richness of our English heritage.

Ask any kid what a Trojan is and they might, just might be able to tell you it's a computer virus. Ask them how it got to be called that, and they will look at you blankly.

Our language is rich, but more importantly it is a measure of hegemony. Currently, that hegemony lies somewhere in the Thames Estuary along with discarded "H"s and "T"s.

The impoverished second rate brains today are sabotaging our culture.

8 December 2008 at 17:02  
Anonymous miserable sinner said...

I remember reading a number of years ago about a big city public library system somewhere here in the USA in which the librarians decided that ALL children's books written prior to a certain year
(1970? 1980?) were unlikely to have the correct attitudes toward other races, cultures, gay and lesbian lifestyles, the environment, etc., and so THEY HAD TO GO. There was a HUGE sale of all of the "incorrect" books with the proceeds to be designated to be used for the purchase of new, enlightened literature for the kiddies. Middle-class parents thronged the sales to stock up (at pennies on the dollar) on books for their children or to rescue favorite books from childhood from the dustbin of history.

I thought of this because eliminating all of the "church" words and "nature" words assumes that the children will NOT be reading any children's literature published before 1980. The kiddies must be forced to read the grittier, "more realistic" and certainly more depressing children's fiction of today.

8 December 2008 at 17:49  
Blogger Man in a Shed said...

This is nothing - you should see what the government is up to with the young pioneer movement ( as schools will no doubt shortly be re-badged ).

The DFID is by far the most sinister and disturbing department in government.

Labour's aim is to set up a national brain washing program - where all its political messages a fed to the young in the same way that the chemical cosh is administered to senior citizens in care homes - ground up in their mashed potato, so they don't even notice they're taking it.

8 December 2008 at 18:36  
Blogger Wyrdtimes said...

Come on Cranmer catch up. We all live in regions now.

Has England been eradicated from the dictionary yet? Or did that happen a while back?

8 December 2008 at 19:11  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Without the word "sin" how will they understand old Pet Shop Boys songs??

8 December 2008 at 19:50  
Anonymous Voyager said...

Vineeta Gupta is obviously unfamiliar with our culture, and probably unfamiliar with our countryside and heritage. It is terrible when foreigners are given responsibility for matters of cultural heritage.

OUP dictionaries are not really worth buying and that is my experience going back decades. they are simply too limited in their grasp of language and reflect a metropolitan mindset lien to the English population.

I feel for Ms Gupta, it cannot be easy as an alien to comprehend our culture. To be put into such an invidious position reflects badly on OUP and no doubt their sales will reflect this poor decision in subjecting Ms Gupta to the embarassing situation whereby she exposes her ignorance of England and its culture

8 December 2008 at 19:57  
Blogger Homophobic Horse said...

Our elite's are in the process of committing democide against us.

8 December 2008 at 20:14  
Blogger ultramontane grumpy old catholic said...

Bloody Hell your Grace, this makes me take on a racist stance.

Gupta? That's not very English is it? What's she doing speaking for an English dictionary.

Is Shiva, Krishna and Ganesh in? What about suttee and untouchable?

It would be interesting to see what would be the marginal saving of excluding the banned words - so small that one must reasonably assume that the decision is based on an AGENDA.

Interesting to see that it is the University of Buckingham (i.e privately funded University) who speaks out against the state funded institution of Oxford.

8 December 2008 at 21:05  
Blogger Cranmer said...

Mr Ultramontane Grumpy Old Catholic,


'Gupta' may not sound very English, but Ms Gupta may indeed be British born and bred.

She may even be oblivious to an agenda.

But if she can no longer see the seasons, there is no point having too high an expectation of her.

8 December 2008 at 21:18  
Blogger Homophobic Horse said...

There are plenty of hate filled "enlightened" liberals in Indian Universities as well.

Eccentric at best, demonic at worst, always insane - Liberalism, 200 years of glory.

8 December 2008 at 21:41  
Anonymous Idiot Englishman said...

Gupta not English - my psychiatrist is Mr Gupta. When I went to see him (first appointment) he had left so I never saw him. Does this mean he does not exist.

8 December 2008 at 22:16  
Blogger Christian-Jedi-Alliance said...

No it means you need stronger medication, or the dark Side has taken over your soul.

8 December 2008 at 23:30  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It will be a great joy then to all to hear that people don't really buy dictionaries anymore. Children and teenagers are living in the 21st century and they have the common sense to use Google which as of yet is not censored. Read this article for example:

So while this may be a terrible affront to the people and the state of the once so Great Britain it will make little difference because very few people by those ridiculous books anyway. You can get them free online which a much waster library and you can still find out what 'empire' and 'goldfish' means.

9 December 2008 at 02:11  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Voyager said that he feels for Ms Gupta. I hope that when he grabs her, he wraps both hands around her throat and squeezes real hard! That would be the beginning of a solution to the problem.

9 December 2008 at 03:14  
Anonymous Adrian P said...

Is the word 'tournante' in it

9 December 2008 at 03:28  
Blogger Homophobic Horse said...

I believe the technical term for what we're being ot through is democide.

In order of severity:

1. Ethnic cleansing: Whole people's being moved on from a certain area, population replacement.

2. Democide: Destroying the conciousness and culture of a certain people i.e. Kulturkampf, Tsarist Russification.

3. Genocide: Physical destruction.

9 December 2008 at 03:31  
Blogger Homophobic Horse said...

"Dwarf, elf, goblin"

These words are in common use, one must only consider the popularity of films and books like Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, and games like World of Warcraft.

So why have they been removed?

I think it's because they're Anglo Saxon words which recall Germanic mythology and history.

It's clear our elite's are trying to destroy us.

If I told Gupta to "Go home" I would be called racist. But that's ironic because at least I still accept that Gupta has a home. Unlike our elite's who are opposed to nationality, they believe it to be "outdated", and then decide they must destroy nations (such as Israel).

9 December 2008 at 04:49  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What is so special about "trapezium" that it must suddenly be included ?

9 December 2008 at 08:25  
Anonymous shaven-headed tattooed knuckledragger said...

First they came for the porcelain pigs, and I did not speak up because I have pot dogs on my mantelpiece.

Then they came for the Christmas decorations, and I did not speak up because it was past 12th night and I had already taken mine down.

Next they came for the golliwogs, and I did not speak up because I go to bed with a teddy bear.

Then they came for the newspaper cuttings, and I did not speak up because I don't buy their stupid rags.

Finally they came for the dictionaries, and I could not speak up because I didn't have the vocabulary.

9 December 2008 at 08:49  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your Grace

Firstly, I applaud your stance, it closely mirrors my opinion. Does this women really believe this decision of denial is intelligent and altruistic?

When I first read this elsewhere it would appear these surreptitious deletions have been taking since 2003, I checked my own dictionaries and was relieved to find my editions pre-date this idiocy.

In the past I have periodically updated, however I will now review this.

One thing is for certain, I will be paying more vigorous attention to the Publisher and its associates to ensure, directly or otherwise, the Oxford University Press will no get business from me.

9 December 2008 at 09:06  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Has 'clitoris' been excised?

9 December 2008 at 09:12  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If anyone wishes to submit their dissatisfaction/register a complaint with the Oxford University Press, the tel. no. is 01865 556767, ask for Rachel Good, the person allocated to take "these complaints".

9 December 2008 at 09:25  
Anonymous G Eagle Esq said...

Lucky Rachael - ombuds=human for the ignoramoi

9 December 2008 at 12:37  
Blogger Little Black Sambo said...

Quite simply, this country is going MAD (read this excellent blog passim and we are allowing it to happen. But what can we do?

9 December 2008 at 13:15  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

‘Pentecost’ or ‘Whitsun’

If I come across these words, I'll need a dictionary.
Can anyone recommend a decent one?

9 December 2008 at 13:39  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ms Goode is very patient and charming. She can be emailed at Please be temperate.

9 December 2008 at 15:11  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Don't suppose that his grace might have any contact details for the aforementioned Ms Gupta, by any chance? A few hundred irritated emails, also copied to her MD (or whoever is her line manager) might serve to notch up the debate a little. Some high profile publicity might also help in the national press. Of course, as his Grace's writings are read so widely, this latter may happen in any event.

9 December 2008 at 17:39  
Blogger len.allan said...

This countries identity is being whittled away, we are being reduced to an impersonal group of people living as part of a larger group.( New world Order?)
I wonder if the same process is happening to the rest of europe?.

9 December 2008 at 18:42  
Anonymous The Enemy ratchets up its control of the Internet said...

Censorship and Control Increases.

How the enemy used Censorship to Win the US elections.

10 December 2008 at 08:47  
Anonymous anon said...

I wonder how they have defined "common sense", "EU", and "tolerant", for example?

10 December 2008 at 11:58  
Anonymous steadmancinques said...

I was invited to a school assembly in an urban primary school this morning; the school caretaker had built a 'stable' from bamboo, brown crepe paper and sellotape. Baby Jesus was lying abandoned in the manger. Three wrapped gifts were in front of the crib. The local vicar spoke on the meaning of Christmas, and the importance of 'invisible' gifts, which the children readily volunteered as love, kindness, thoughtfulness to others, etc.
At the end, the children filed out by 'houses'; Oak, Ash, Beech and Sycamore. People like Ms. Gupta should really get out more..

10 December 2008 at 12:40  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Maybe Ms Gupta is Indian. And maybe her god is shiva. That is why she is doing something like that.
My question is:
Why only her has to do something like that.
I think a commission is more appropriate to do that. Some multicultural commission.
I don't care about politically correct, actually, I'm tired of that.

11 December 2008 at 06:59  
Blogger ZZMike said...

And it's a good thing too. There's no telling what mischief might arise from people knowing words like "buttercup", "willow", and "fern".

Why, they might even start naming their daughters with such vile apellations.

[As an aside, what will we be hearing during performances of Gilbert & Sullivan's "Pirates of Penzance"?

Assuming that hasn't already been banned.]

This is just another example of the sad state of affairs in Formerly Great Britain.

The notion that since "childhood is going, moving away from our spiritual background and the natural world and towards the world that information technology creates for us", we ought to eliminate any words reflecting that spiritual background, is ridiculous.

Why also is someone named "Vineeta Gupta" in charge of English children's dictionaries? I'm sure she has ample academic awards, but until someone named "Mr Rudyard Willougby" is in charge of the Hindi Children's Dictionary Committee, I think we ought to make other arrangements.

11 December 2008 at 22:59  
Blogger ZZMike said...

"Adder, ass, beaver, boar, budgerigar, bullock, ..."

Well, they're probably all going extinct anyway...

11 December 2008 at 23:10  
Blogger ZZMike said...

One of the "anonymous"s wrote:

"You can get them free online which a much waster library and you can still find out what 'empire' and 'goldfish' means."

And maybe you can find out what "waster" means as well, and maybe even the difference between "with" and "which".

My compliments to Mr knuckledragger for his most elegant "they came for" version.

Yet another "anonymous" asks, "Has 'clitoris' been excised?".

Perhaps not, but I do believe that "foreskin" has.

12 December 2008 at 23:39  
Anonymous Dave J. said...

""Dwarf, elf, goblin"

These words are in common use, one must only consider the popularity of films and books like Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, and games like World of Warcraft.

So why have they been removed?

I think it's because they're Anglo Saxon words which recall Germanic mythology and history.

Professor Tolkien would be horrified. He, after all, was an editor of the OED. He was the one who insisted that the proper plural of dwarf, when speaking of myth rather than human deformity, is dwarves rather than dwarfs. He was both a devout Catholic and no less a lover of the sound and feel and history of the English language than it has ever had.

13 December 2008 at 16:44  
Blogger Tim said...

I realize this thread is long idle, but I couldn't help but observe that with the change of regime here in the US, I fully expect American dictionaries to begin releasing updates for the sake of "relevance".

4 May 2009 at 14:50  

Post a Comment

<< Home

Newer›  ‹Older