Category Archives: biography

P.G. Wodehouse, what?

One of my colleagues here at Leiden is reading P.G. Wodehouse. She told me about this because she had noticed what seeemed to her a peculiar construction, as in “It does make it awkward, what?” and “Better take a look … Continue reading

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Happy birthday, Paul Brians!

Another one of our usage guide writer’s birthdays! Paul Brians is the author of Common Errors in English Usage, published in 2003, one of the usage guides in our HUGE database. Paul also has a website, a blog, a daily calendar (for … Continue reading

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Who is Kay Sayce? Who is Ann Batko?

I’m trying to find out who Kay Sayce is. I know she (he?) is the author of a usage guide called What not to write: A guide to the dos and dont’s of good English (2006). The book is included … Continue reading

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Farewell to Geoffrey Leech

This month, Geoffrey Leech, the eminent Professor and the founder of the Department of Linguistics and English Language at Lancaster University, passed away. Due to his major contributions to the fields of corpus linguistics, stylistics, pragmatics and semantics, as well … Continue reading

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Who is Harry Blamires?

There, I’ve done it again: I found another usage guide at our local (Dutch!) charity shop Het Warenhuis. How did the book end up in the Netherlands? There is no ownership inscription unfortunately, so we won’t know who the former … Continue reading

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The Correct and Improving Major Byron F. Caws

This is Richard Bond’s second blog post. The Story So Far – At Dr. Johnson’s House in London there is a plaque that reads “Castigavit et emendavit” (“he corrected and improved“) suggesting that these are H. W. Fowler’s words in recognition … Continue reading

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