The Secret Life of Words How English Became English

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  • Edition: 1st
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 9/29/2009
  • Publisher: Picador

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Supplemental Materials

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  • The New copy of this book will include any supplemental materials advertised. Please check the title of the book to determine if it should include any access cards, study guides, lab manuals, CDs, etc.
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"The Secret Life of Words" is a wide-ranging account not only of the history of English language and vocabulary, but also of how words witness history, reflect social change, and remind societies of its past.

Author Biography

HENRY HITCHINGS was born in 1974. He is the author of Defining the World and has contributed to many newspapers and magazines.

Table of Contents

“Hitchings here provides a colorful, thematic history of the English language . . . Hitchings is a fine writer with an eye for the illustrative detail . . . With ninety-plus pages of notes, sources, and useful indexes, this is fine choice for libraries and a ‘smorgasbord’ for language aficionados. Highly recommended.”--E. L. Battistella, Choice

“A rich and readable history.”--The Boston Globe

“Astonishing . . . Every page of The Secret Life of Words is stuffed with rewards. . .Painstakingly detailed, closely argued and suffused with a contagious enthusiasm.”--Daily Telegraph (UK)

“A galloping history of English-speaking people and lists of words they have borrowed or invented.”--The New York Sun

"Filled with fascinating nuggets."--The Independent (UK)

"A delightful book."--The Roanoke Times

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