[Ads-l] help wanted: information on a mid-18th C English dictionary

ADSGarson O'Toole adsgarsonotoole at GMAIL.COM
Wed Sep 29 14:52:42 EDT 2021

Google Books has a digital copy in full view of the dictionary that
was scanned from a copy at the British Library. GAT is looking for
reviews of the dictionary, and this reply does not point to reviews.
Nevertheless it may be helpful to people who want to look at scans of
the dictionary with the baseball definition.


Title: A General Dictionary of the English Language: Compiled with the
Greatest Care from the Best Authors and Dictionaries Now Extant. By a
Society of Gentlemen
Publication Info: Printed for J. and R. Fuller, in Ave-Maria-Lane; and
Sold by All Other Booksellers in Great-Britain
Original from: The British Library
Digitized: Oct 4, 2016
Length: 728 pages

The scanned pages at the beginning mention Elizabeth Wortley and
Benjamin Wortley


On Tue, Sep 28, 2021 at 12:40 PM George Thompson
<george.thompson at nyu.edu> wrote:
> David Block, who has done remarkable research into the prehistory of
> baseball, posted this to another site:
> "BASEBALL, (From base and ball) A rural game in which the person striking
> the ball must run to his base or goal."
> Additionally, the dictionary lists the following as one of its definitions
> for the word "base":
> BASE "A rural play, also called baseball."
> These entries come from a dictionary entitled "A General Dictionary of the
> English Language, Compiled with the Greatest Care from the Best Authors and
> Dictionaries Now Extant." Its authors are "A Society of Gentlemen" and it
> was published in London in 1768.
> It of course would be nice to know something about this book.  It seems to
> have fallen with a thud when published.  It has been microfilmed as part of
> the immense collection of 18th C books in English, and from that has been
> digitized in ECCO, but there are danged few paper copies kicking around.  I
> have searched 2 files of 18th C English journals, and have not found
> anything resembling a review, nor even an announcement from the publisher
> that it had been issued.
> Is there a stupefyingly thorough history of 18th C dictionaries that might
> have a page on it?  Or any other ideas?
> --
> George A. Thompson
> Author of A Documentary History of "The African Theatre", Northwestern
> Univ. Pr., 1998, but nothing much since then.
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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

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