Within this project, we’ve focused on English, and started our research on the history of the tradition from the first usage guide believed to have been published, Robert Baker’s Reflections on the English Language, from 1770.
Inspired by this, I started looking for the first usage guide in Dutch, my native language, and found it, or at least, I think I did: I wrote a blog post about it as well as an article in the online journal Neerlandistiek.
My next step was to look for the first German usage guide, for a paper I was preparing last January, and will be giving again next month. I don’t think I found it, so the quest continues, and suggestions are very welcome.
But one thing leads to another, and Matjaž Zgonc from the University of Ljubljana in Slovenia has let us know that he has been working on the first usage guide for Slovenian. It is much, much younger than Baker (1770), and if you want to read about it, read the piece he wrote about if for this blog.
If you wish to add to this growing and very interesting list, do get in touch!