Dr Johnson and his Dictionary

4 English Trailblazers Who Changed the World

If you manage a trip to London, do not miss out on visiting the home of Dr Samuel Johnson. It’s a wonderful Georgian house and the only one of his London homes to have survived, and today it is a really excellent museum. Up in the attic you can see where he worked for years on his great dictionary, where he entertained his many literary guests, and drank tea (he described himself as a “hardened and shameless tea drinker”, often indulging in 23 cups in one sitting!). Learn about Dr Johnson’s remarkable life and personality and the story of how he came to work on a book defining words. Discover the enduring legacy of this trailblazing lexicographer.

Just $15.00

This video is about 60 minutes full of intriguing information.

PLEASE NOTE: This product contains an online video. Buy now and view your video immediately. Please look for access details in your order confirmation email.

The ‘Dictionary’ is “a perpetual monument of fame to the author, an honour to his own country in particular, and a general benefit to the Republic of Letters”
– Florentine Accademia

An English language milestone

Published in 1775, and 2,300 pages long, Dr Johnson’s A Dictionary of the English Language marked a milestone in a language that desperately needed standards. There had been no scholarly and comprehensive dictionary before he took on the task. No previous dictionary had devoted so much space to everyday words, created such thorough definitions, or illustrated the usage of words from Shakespeare and other great writers. For the next 150 years, Johnson’s Dictionary would define the language.

It took him seven years to complete his task although he thought he would do it in three. According to critic Walter Jackson Bate the Dictionary “easily ranks as one of the greatest single achievements of scholarship, and probably the greatest ever by one individual who laboured under anything like the disadvantages in a comparable length of time.” The book’s influence was sweeping. Johnson established a methodology for lexicography and anyone creating a dictionary after Johnson did so in his shadow. Just $15, purchase access here.

Purchase the Recorded Talk (just $15 AU)

This Zoom video is a real treat! Taken from a live-streamed presentation, it has been carefully recorded and completely edited to deliver the experience of being part of an audience and having the best seat in the house. It is about 60 minutes full of intriguing information about this Scottish Trailblazer and includes audience participation. Buy it now and view your video immediately. Just $15, purchase access here.

100% guaranteed. If you don’t feel my talk is great value for money, please let me know why and I will refund your purchase price.

Thanks so much for all this!  You work so hard on our behalf I loved your talk on AA Milne and Winnie-the-Pooh and a completely different take on th... Read more
Thanks so much for all this!  You work so hard on our behalf. I loved your talk on A.A. Milne and Winnie-the-Pooh and a completely different take on the book and the man!
Louise
Thank you, Susannah - that was delightful I very much appreciate the video recordings, as I am usually not able to see the live talks I do love the E... Read more

Thank you, Susannah – that was delightful. I very much appreciate the video recordings, as I am usually not able to see the live talks. I do love the E.H. Shepard illustrations.

Margaret
Susannah’s Newsletters are excellent - the best that is available on the Internet as far as I am concerned

Susannah’s Newsletters are excellent – the best that is available on the Internet as far as I am concerned.

Heather
Oh, how I love the wit and coziness of your newsletters They are stories in themselves which I love to read over and over

Oh, how I love the wit and coziness of your newsletters. They are stories in themselves which I love to read over and over.

Diana
Your newsletters are the only time I read poetry and your selections are consistently enjoyable Thank you for this beauty

Your newsletters are the only time I read poetry and your selections are consistently enjoyable. Thank you for this beauty.

Maria
I'm 76 years old now and a relatively new "NotesAddict" reader Thank you for what you do; you are a JOY, Susannah!

I’m 76 years old now … and a relatively new “Notes…Addict” reader. Thank you for what you do; you are a JOY, Susannah!

Joyce
I just wanted to drop you a line to say how much I have enjoyed your latest Notes from a Book Addict! So many thanks for your wonderful communication,... Read more

I just wanted to drop you a line to say how much I have enjoyed your latest Notes from a Book Addict! So many thanks for your wonderful communication, it really always makes my day! 

Audrey
Thank you Susannah, I love learning from you

Thank you Susannah, I love learning from you.

Kelly
Thanks for your lecture series on the 4 English trailblazers, I have now caught up with all four of them Even though I had a fair bit of prior knowled... Read more

Thanks for your lecture series on the 4 English trailblazers, I have now caught up with all four of them. Even though I had a fair bit of prior knowledge of all except Florence Nightingale, I enjoyed your lectures very much, there were so many lovely pictures and unexpected sidelights that I was very well entertained. You really brought out how these four brilliant misfits made a difference to English culture!

I would have loved to have taken part in the actual lectures, but 5 pm on a weekday does not work for me, unfortunately, so I was pleased to be able to catch the lectures later. I look forward to further lectures in the future.

Merete

Leave a comment.

Comments are moderated, and will not appear until approved.