Lexicographer Eric Partridge was an intriguing figure. Born in New Zealand, he was educated in Queensland, Australia, served in the First World War and finished his studies at Balliol College, Oxford. He would spent the rest of his life in Britain, working as a researcher and lecturer. The Library of the British Museum (now: British Library) became his second home. Always seated at the same desk (K1), he produced numerous books on the English language.
A surprising aspect of this unassuming man’s career was his interest in slang and offbeat language (which apparently was rooted in his wartime experiences), culminating in 1937 with the publication of a Dictionary of Slang and Unconventional English. From this rich offering of linguistic treasures, many words have been “dropped” over time or changed their original meaning. [Read more…] about Cycling History: Manhattan Scorchers & Louis Chevrolet