Thursday, November 7, 2013

Yep, still fun

Tonight I was looking for examples of naughty slang to determine if an Edwardian English pirate might find the word "aspic" funny for the same reasons a modern American would. (The answer seems to be yes--although naturally he would pronounce it "arse-pic" as he snickered, at least before the Captain raises his hook and Vivian Drew steps deliberately on his instep with the slender heel of her boot.)

And I was lucky enough to find A Dictionary of Slang and Unconventional English on Google Books, and even luckier to find a used two-volume hardback set of the actual book on This looks like the best source on slang I've ever seen. It's full of everything. I think I could read this for hours and be entertained the entire time.

At the risk of turning this into a promotional post (too late! the audience cries), AbeBooks has been my best friend for both collecting and research and it deserves to be recognized. They've had almost everything I've looked for, and with a range of conditions and prices. I can find an illustrated Peter Pan in near-perfect condition, or a beat-up paperback to write notes in or a former library book for nostalgia purposes. And I can find recreational reading there too (for the little I get to do of that these days).

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