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Samuel Johnson's Dictionary, published in 1755, marked a milestone in a language in desperate need of standards. No English dictionary before it had devoted so much space to everyday words, been so thorough in its definitions, or illustrated usage by quoting from Shakespeare and other great writers. Johnson's was the dictionary used by Jane Austen and Charles Dickens, Wordsworth and Coleridge, the Brontës and the Brownings, Thomas Hardy and Oscar Wilde. This new edition, edited by David Crystal, will contain a selection from the original, offering memorable passages on subjects ranging from books and critics to dreams and ethics.

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