English Words in War-Time

The English Words in War-Time Project is an on-going research project supported by the John Fell Oxford University Press Research Fund.

In August 1914, Andrew Clark, rector of Great Leighs in Essex and a long-established volunteer on the (then on-going) first edition of the Oxford English Dictionary, decided to document the impact of war on the English language. The 70 notebooks (and associated files) that he produced over the next four years, headed ‘English Words in War-Time’, provide a detailed and largely unexamined record of language on the Home Front, and the reporting of war in a critical period of social and historical change. The ‘English Words in War-Time’ project will track Clark’s emerging lexical history in ‘real time’ — if a hundred years later — and in a series of blogs (both thematic, as well as focussing on individual words) which will run across the centenary of WWI.

The author of the project, Lynda Mugglestone, is Professor of the History of English at the University of Oxford, and a Fellow of Pembroke College, Oxford. She has published widely on the history of the English, and on the social, cultural, and ideological issues that dictionary-making can reveal.

For more information on the project, see here.