celebrate

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Today’s Google Doodle celebrates the 308th birthday of lexicographer Samuel Johnson

Published September 18, 2017 by Shadow Girl

Samuel Johnson created the first great English dictionary.

Johnson was a poet, essayist, critic, biographer, an editor, and most importantly (today anyway) – a lexicographer.
His 1755 dictionary was the first truly comprehensive dictionary of the language, and remained the gold standard until The Oxford English Dictionary of 1884 — but one of the best reasons to remember him is – dude was hilarious!

Some of Johnson’s entries are still a complete crack-up. In fact, he was so funny that his buddy Boswell spent 22 years basically just following him around, filling 18 volumes with his various ‘Samuelisms’, creating The Life of Samuel Johnson.
Samuel Johnson was so funny that the only person in the English language who’s quoted more often is Shakespeare.

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To celebrate our fellow lover of lexicology, let’s giggle with some of Johnson’s most notable & quotable dictionary entries –

Lexicographer: A writer of dictionaries; a harmless drudge that busies himself in tracing the original, and detailing the signification of words.

Cough: A convulsion of the lungs, vellicated by some sharp serosity.

Distiller: One who makes and sells pernicious and inflammatory spirits.

Dull: Not exhilaterating (sic); not delightful; as, to make dictionaries isdull work.

Excise: A hateful tax levied upon commodities, and adjudged not by the common judges of property, but wretches hired by those to whom excise is paid.

Far-fetch: A deep stratagem. A ludicrous word.

Jobbernowl: Loggerhead; blockhead.

Kickshaw: A dish so changed by the cookery that it can scarcely be known.

Network: Any thing reticulated or decussated, at equal distances, with interstices between the intersections. (See how he defined ‘reticulated,’ below.)

Oats: A grain, which in England is generally given to horses, but in Scotland appears to support the people.

Pastern: The knee of a horse. (This is wrong. When Johnson was once asked how he came to make such a mistake, Boswell tells us he replied,“Ignorance, Madam, pure ignorance.”)

Patron: One who countenances, supports or protects. Commonly a wretch who supports with insolence, and is paid with flattery.

Pension: An allowance made to any one without an equivalent. In England it is generally understood to mean pay given to a state hireling for treason to his country.

Politician: 1. One versed in the arts of government; one skilled in politicks. 2. A man of artifice; one of deep contrivance.

Reticulated: Made of network; formed with interstitial vacuities.

Tory: One who adheres to the ancient constitution of the state, and the apostolical hierarchy of the church of England, opposed to a Whig.

Whig: The name of a faction.

To worm: To deprive a dog of something, nobody knows what, under his tongue, which is said to prevent him, nobody knows why, from running mad.

“It is commonly observed, that when two Englishmen meet, their first talk is of the weather; they are in haste to tell each other, what each must already know, that it is hot or cold, bright or cloudy, windy or calm.”The Idler

“I have, all my life long, been lying till noon; yet I tell all young men, and tell them with great sincerity, that nobody who does not rise early will ever do any good.”The Journal of a Tour to the Hebrides

“At the tea table he had considerable demands upon his favorite beverage, and I remember when Sir Joshua Reynolds at my house reminded him that he had drank eleven cups, he replied — ‘Sir, I did not count your glasses of wine, why should you number up my cups of tea?’” —The Life of Samuel Johnson, Vol. 2

“It can scarcely be candid not to make a previous declaration, that he is to expect little justice from the author of this extract, a hardened and shameless tea-drinker.”A Journal of Eight Days’ Journey


How well do you think you know Samuel Johnson’s dictionary?

Take this hilarious quiz to find out!

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Celebrating Moms Everywhere!

Published May 14, 2017 by Shadow Girl

Celebrate Your Freedom – Read Banned Books!

Published October 1, 2016 by Shadow Girl

 

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Banned Books Week was launched in 1982 in response to a sudden surge in the number of challenges to books in schools, bookstores and libraries. More than 11,300 books have been challenged since 1982 according to the American Library Association. The 10 most challenged titles of 2015 were:

Looking for Alaska, by John Green
Reasons: Offensive language, sexually explicit, and unsuited for age group.

Fifty Shades of Grey, by E. L. James
Reasons: Sexually explicit, unsuited to age group, and other (“poorly written,” “concerns that a group of teenagers will want to try it”).

I Am Jazz, by Jessica Herthel and Jazz Jennings
Reasons: Inaccurate, homosexuality, sex education, religious viewpoint, and unsuited for age group.

Beyond Magenta: Transgender Teens Speak Out, by Susan Kuklin
Reasons: Anti-family, offensive language, homosexuality, sex education, political viewpoint, religious viewpoint, unsuited for age group, and other (“wants to remove from collection to ward off complaints”).

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, by Mark Haddon
Reasons: Offensive language, religious viewpoint, unsuited for age group, and other (“profanity and atheism”).

The Holy Bible
Reasons: Religious viewpoint.

Fun Home, by Alison Bechdel
Reasons: Violence and other (“graphic images”).

Habibi, by Craig Thompson
Reasons: Nudity, sexually explicit, and unsuited for age group.

Nasreen’s Secret School: A True Story from Afghanistan, by Jeanette Winter
Reasons: Religious viewpoint, unsuited to age group, and violence.

Two Boys Kissing, by David Levithan
Reasons: Homosexuality and other (“condones public displays of affection”).

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Censorship

Hundreds of books have been either removed or challenged in schools and libraries in the United States every year. According to the American Library Association (ALA), there were at least 311 in 2014. ALA estimates that 70 to 80 percent are never reported.

SUPPORT BANNED BOOKS WEEK – What You Can Do 

Help support the Banned Books Week initiative by purchasing promotional products like the posters featured here, including T-shirts, buttons and bookmarks. Visit the ALA Store to purchase these products.

SUPPORT THE EFFORT TO DEFEND THE FIRST AMENDMENT IN LIBRARIES AND BEYOND

The Freedom to Read Foundation works every day to ensure that you have access to information you want and the materials you need. Become a member or make a donation today.

SUPPORT BOOKSELLERS

The Comic Book Legal Defense Fund sells signed comic books and t-shirts. Support your right to read comic books by purchasing merchandise from their store.

 

The American Society of Journalists and Authors sells “I Read Banned Books” buttons for $1 each. Check out their store for more information.

 

 

Purchase Project Censored latest book, The Top 25 Censored Stories of 2013-14. To purchase, please visit their site.

 

Support These Banned Books Week sponsors:

March 6th – World Book Day

Published March 6, 2014 by Shadow Girl

Info shared from the WBD website

What Is World Book Day?

World Book Day is a celebration!
It’s a celebration of authors, illustrators, books and (most importantly) it’s a celebration of reading. In fact, it’s the biggest celebration of its kind, designated by UNESCO as a worldwide celebration of books and reading, and marked in over 100 countries all over the world.

This is the 17th year there’s been a World Book Day, and on 6th March 2014 children of all ages will come together to appreciate reading. Very loudly and very happily. The main aim of World Book Day in the UK and Ireland is to encourage children to explore the pleasures of books and reading by providing them with the opportunity to have a book of their own. That’s why we will be sending schools (including those nurseries and secondary schools that have specially registered to participate), packs of Book Tokens and age-ranged World Book Day Resource Packs (age-ranged into Nursery/Pre-School, Primary and Secondary) full of ideas and activities, display material and more information about how to get involved in World Book Day.

What happens?
Thanks to the generosity of National Book Tokens Ltd, publishers and booksellers, we can send millions of book vouchers to children and young people (more than 14 million, in fact: that’s one for nearly every child aged under eighteen in the country).

Then…
They can take their voucher to a local bookseller and can use it to pick one of EIGHT (exclusive, new and completely free) books. Or, if they’d rather, they can use it to get £1 off any book or audio book costing over £2.99 at a participating bookshop or book club (terms and conditions apply).

How can you get involved?
Look out for the new downloadable resource packs coming soon and please visit our Resources section which is full of exciting and fun resources based on favourite books, brands, characters and authors.

It’s all about getting kids closer to the books and authors they already love, and letting them discover more books and authors they’ll love every bit as much in the future.

Contact Us
If you’ve got any questions, problems, ideas or anything to share, whether it’s about your World Book Day book tokens, resources, display materials or anything else, the World Book Day Helpline is only a phonecall or an email (or even a fax) away. Please get in touch.

Email wbd@education.co.uk
Phone 01634 729810
Fax 01634 290175

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