[C18-L] imaginary grammars

Robin Hamilton robin.hamilton3 at VIRGINMEDIA.COM
Tue Oct 26 20:18:35 UTC 2010

I'm not sure this is what the questioner was asking for, but it immediately
sprang to mind (and may have been what Swift was objecting to given the
general anti-Royal-Society context of his description of the Laputan

            John Wilkins, _An Essay towards a Real Character, and a
Philosophical Language_ (London, 1668)


Outside the temporal remit of the question, but cool if you haven't come
across it, is Luigi Serafini's _Codex Seraphinianus_ -- not just an
immaginary grammar but an entire encyclopedia, a la Borges.  There's even a
Rossetti Stone page.


From: "Joel S. Berson" <Berson at ATT.NET>
Sent: Tuesday, October 26, 2010 8:52 PM
Subject:      Re: [C18-L] imaginary grammars

> ---------------------- Information from the mail
> header -----------------------
> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       "Joel S. Berson" <Berson at ATT.NET>
> Subject:      Re: [C18-L] imaginary grammars
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> On a list of 18th-century mavens and afficiondos:
> At 10/26/2010 02:35 PM, Ruth MENZIES wrote:
>>I was wondering whether anyone on the list could point me towards
>>imaginary voyages/utopias that present more or less detailed
>>grammars purporting to illustrate perfect languages (the kind of
>>thing Swift derides in Gulliver's Travels).
>>I am familiar with French texts of this sort (Veiras, Foigny, Tyssot
>>de Patot) but less so as regards works in English.
> I'll pass on any responses to the other list.
> Remember, the writer is almost certainly interested in the period
> before, say, 1850 -- so don't give me "Star Trek, Voyager".
> Joel
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

More information about the Ads-l mailing list