Thursday, November 27, 2014

Why the DMNES? Part 1: Filling a lacuna

Recently there has been significant interest in compiling word dictionaries of various medieval languages, cf., e.g., the Middle English Dictionary, various dictionaries of Old French such as those found here, the Dictionary of Medieval Latin from British Sources, the Dictionary of Medieval Latin from Celtic Sources, the Anglo-Norman Dictionary, the Dictionary of the Scots Language, theDictionnaire Étymologique de l’Ancien Français, etc., and here we can count even the Oxford English Dictionary.
These dictionaries, however, do not include given names in their citations, except incidentally (cf., e.g., personal names where the bynames are used as attestations of Middle English words in the MED). The DMNES will fill this lacuna, providing examples of words (names) which are not otherwise included in these historical dictionaries.
There are a number of disparate audiences for whom filling this lacuna can be beneficial. In the next parts of this series, we will discuss the various target audiences of the Dictionary.

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