Passing English of the Victorian era, a dictionary of heterodox English, slang and phrase (1909)

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Passing English of the Victorian era, a dictionary of heterodox English, slang and phrase (1909)

Post by Erik_Kowal » Thu Jun 21, 2018 4:27 am

Readers of 19th-century English fiction may be interested in a dictionary of Victorian slang titled Passing English of the Victorian era, a dictionary of heterodox English, slang and phrase.

It was compiled and written by James Redding Ware, the pseudonym of Andrew Forrester, the British writer who created one of the first female detectives in literary history in his book The Female Detective (1863).

In this volume, which was published posthumously in 1909, Forrester turns his attention to the world of Victorian slang, in particular the slang that fell from Londoners' lips.

The dictionary is downloadable as a PDF.
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Re: Passing English of the Victorian era, a dictionary of heterodox English, slang and phrase (1909)

Post by tony h » Thu Jun 21, 2018 9:18 am

I am going to enjoy this. Thank you.

A first dipping found "balaclava a full beard" followed by an interesting history of the disappearance and reappearing of the beard in England.

Erik: I couldn't see how to download it. (edit) Found it.
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Signature: tony

I'm puzzled therefore I think.

Re: Passing English of the Victorian era, a dictionary of heterodox English, slang and phrase (1909)

Post by Erik_Kowal » Thu Jun 21, 2018 3:32 pm

Since writing the original posting I've investigated more closely the various ways in which it is possible to browse and share the dictionary, which is presented initially in a flip-book format. Navigation here is basic, and involves clicking on the left- or right-hand side of the book (or on the left- or right-pointing arrowhead icons located under the bottom right of the book) to flip backwards or forwards through it, one page at a time.

However, if you maximize the flip-book format (by clicking on the icon to the immediate left of the left- and right-pointing arrowheads), additional options are selectable in the new tab that subsequently opens. You can:

1) Download the dictionary in PDF, ePub, plain text, DAISY and Kindle formats.

2) Use the search box to find a particular word or expression. The text in question is searched for both in the headwords and in the definitions. Each found occurrence of the term is indicated by a pushpin displayed along a navigation bar below the flip-book that represents its approximate location in the book. Mousing over the pushpin displays the entire entry containing the term. You can also click on a pushpin to be taken to the full page that contains the relevant entry, where the search term will also be highlighted in purple to make it easier to locate quickly. You can click on one pushpin without losing the others.

3) Browse the book by dragging the position marker along the navigation bar.

4) Use the zoom controls to zoom in or out; on my screen, a full-height letter F, for example, can be magnified to 2.2 centimetres.

5) Listen to an entry being read aloud. The computer voice (which has been made to sound like an American woman) is rather mechanical-sounding, but is generally comprehensible. (However, it fails to indicate when it is reading text in parentheses; that could certainly be confusing, especially when the parenthetical text is also an abbreviation.) Each successive sentence in an entry is highlighted in purple as it is read out.

6) Select from a one-page view, a two-page view and a thumbnail view.

7) Link to the entire book, or to a particular page within it, via Facebook, Twitter or email.

8) Embed a mini Book Reader version of the dictionary in your own website or blog.

Taken together, these extra features impressively enhance the basic functionality.
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