The Surgeon of Crowthorne: A Tale of Murder,Madness and the Oxford English Dicti


This inspiring tale of literary brilliance and dangerous madness recounts the invaluable role played in the creation of the Oxford English Dictionary by a deranged American Civil War hero who was also a millionaire and a murderer.

ISBN: 9780140271287 Author: Winchester, Simon Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd Publication Date: 3rd June 1999 Imprint: Penguin Books Cover: Paperback Dewey: 423.092 (edition:21) Pages: 207 Readership: General - Trade / Code: K Category: Subjects: ,

The making of the Oxford English Dictionary was a monumental 50 year task requiring thousands of volunteers. One of the keenest volunteers was a W C Minor who astonished everyone by refusing to come to Oxford to receive his congratulations. In the end, James Murray, the OED’s editor, went to Crowthorne in Berkshire to meet him. What he found was incredible – Minor was a millionaire American civil war surgeon turned lunatic, imprisoned in Broadmoor Asylum for murder and yet who dedicated his entire cell-bound life to work on the English language.

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