[Ads-l] Yet Further Antedating of "Lunch"

Shapiro, Fred fred.shapiro at YALE.EDU
Tue Jan 6 12:26:46 UTC 2015


Another way to look at an antedating like this is that it reveals a weakness of the OED.  It is easy, with the hindsight furnished by powerful online historical text collections, to draw such conclusions, but I tend not to take that tack.  

Occasionally, however, an OED first use is so late that one wonders whether a batch of citation slips was lost.  My favorite example is _literary_ 'of or pertaining to literature.'  The first use in the original OED was 1749, despite the facts that this was a favorite word of Samuel Johnson's going back to 1734, and was used by Francis Bacon in 1605.  

Fred Shapiro



________________________________________
From: American Dialect Society [ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU] on behalf of Jonathan Lighter [wuxxmupp2000 at GMAIL.COM]
Sent: Tuesday, January 06, 2015 6:42 AM
To: ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU
Subject: Re: Yet Further Antedating of "Lunch"

Wow.

This looks like another example of an innocuous and presumably familiar
word that for inexplicable reasons of chance (and perhaps of writerly
"decorum") rarely appeared in print for many, many decades after its
introduction.

JL

On Mon, Jan 5, 2015 at 10:37 PM, Shapiro, Fred <fred.shapiro at yale.edu>
wrote:

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> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       "Shapiro, Fred" <fred.shapiro at YALE.EDU>
> Subject:      Yet Further Antedating of "Lunch"
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> lunch (OED, n.2 2.a., 1829)
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> 1677 Guy Miege _A New Dictionary French and English_ (Early English Books
> O=
> nline)  A LUNCH, or luncheon of bread, grosse tranche de pain.
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> Fred Shapiro
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--
"If the truth is half as bad as I think it is, you can't handle the truth."

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