English American Dictionaries

In 1806, American Noah Webster published his first dictionary, an English-language dictionary competitive. In 1807 Webster began compiling an extensive and all-risk dictionary, an American English dictionary; It took twenty-seven years to complete. To evaluate the etymology of words, Webster learned twenty-six languages, including Old English, German, Greek, Latin, Italian, Spanish, French, Hebrew, Arabic, and Sanskrit.

Webster completed his dictionary during his year abroad in 1825 in Paris, France, and the University of Cambridge. His book contained seventy thousand words, twelve thousand had never appeared in a dictionary published before. As a spelling reformer, Webster believes that English spelling rules were unnecessarily complex, introduced his American English dictionary already exist, replacing “color” with “color” replaced with “carriage” and printing “center” instead Of “center”. Also added American words such as “skunk” and “pumpkin”, which does not appear in British dictionaries. At the age of seventy, Webster published his dictionary in 1828; 2,500 copies were sold in 1840, the second edition is published in two volumes.

Austin (2005) explores the intersection of lexicographical and poetic practices in American literature, and attempts to draw a “lexical poetry” using the Webster definitions as its basis. It explores how American poets use Webster dictionaries, often relying on lexicography to express their word play. Austin explains the key definitions of compendium dictionary (1806) and America (1828), and introduced in his speech a series of problems, including American English policy, the question of national identity and culture in the early stages of independence American, and the poetics of citation and definition. Austin came to the conclusion that Webster dictionaries helped redefine Americanism in an era of emerging political and cultural identity and volatile America. Webster himself saw nationalization dictionaries as a device to separate America from Britain, calling the project a “federal language” with forces competing for regularity on the one hand and innovation on the other. Austin suggests that the contradictions of Webster’s lexicography were part of a larger game between freedom and order in American intellectual discourse, with a little taken to Europe and the past, and others brought out the Latin and the new future.