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How Not To Say What You Mean: A Dictionary of Euphemisms (Oxford Paperback… (edition 2003)
by R. W. Holder
Oxford Dictionary of Euphemisms by R. W. Holder
Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0198604025, Hardcover)We often use euphemisms when dealing with taboo or sensitive subjects. We speak of "full-figured" women. We "fudge" on our income tax. We get "cold feet" before our wedding. In How Not to Say What You Mean, R.W. Holder offers an engaging volume that celebrates this human tendency to use mild, vague, or roundabout expressions rather than those which are blunt, precise, and true.
Arranged in alphabetical order, this dictionary contains thousands of entertaining and informative entries ranging from such circumlocutions as a "fruit salad" (mixture of illegal narcotics), "arm candy" (a good-looking female companion), a "barrel-house" (a brothel), "birthday suit" (nakedness), and a "blue hair" (an old women). Completely updated, the dictionary provides definitions, examples, as well as historical explanations where appropriate.
Fun, fascinating, lively, and at times shocking, this new edition of How Not to Say What You Mean is a browser's delight and will appeal to all language and word play lovers, and anyone looking for a good laugh.
(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:25:29 -0400)
"From its first appearance in 1987 as A Dictionary of American and British Euphemisms, Bob Holder's work has been the standard reference book for those studying the language of evasion and understatement. This new edition, renamed How Not To Say What You Mean, has been completely rewritten. It retains old favourites while adding over a thousand new entries, which reflect modern euphemistic terms on such issues as marriage, race, homosexuality, drug-taking, and security of employment." "The quotations which accompany entries are both illustrative and interesting in their own right. Where appropriate, the etymology of a term is explained, giving a philological insight into this universally used, but little studied, branch of our language."--BOOK JACKET.
(summary from another edition)
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