The American Language 3-Volume Hardcover Set: The American Language, Supplement One, Supplement Two (Fourth Edition)
by Mencken, H.L.
Fourth edition. Complete in three volumes. 9 1/2 x 6 7/8. 8vo. "The American Language, first published in 1919, is H. L. Mencken's book about the English language as spoken in the United States. Mencken was inspired by "the argot of the colored waiters" in Washington, as well as one of his favorite authors, Mark Twain, and his experiences on the streets of Baltimore. In 1902, Mencken remarked on the "queer words which go into the making of 'United States.'" The book was preceded by several columns in The Evening Sun. Mencken eventually asked "Why doesn't some painstaking pundit attempt a grammar of the American language... English, that is, as spoken by the great masses of the plain people of this fair land?" It would appear that he answered his own question. In the tradition of Noah Webster, who wrote the first American dictionary, Mencken wanted to defend "Americanisms" against a steady stream of English critics, who usually isolated Americanisms as borderline barbarous perversions of the mother tongue. Mencken assaulted the prescriptive grammar of these critics and American "schoolmarms", arguing, like Samuel Johnson in the preface to his dictionary, that language evolves independently of textbooks. The book discusses the beginnings of "American" variations from "English", the spread of these variations, American names and slang over the course of its 374 pages. According to Mencken, American English was more colorful, vivid, and creative than its British counterpart. The book sold exceptionally well by Mencken's standards—1400 copies in the first two months. Reviews of the book praised it lavishly, with the exception of one by Mencken's old nemesis, Stuart Sherman. Mencken released several full-sized supplements to the main volume in ensuing decades, based on the boom in linguistics articles. Many of the sources and research material associated with the book are in the Mencken collection at the Enoch Pratt Free Library in Baltimore, Maryland." - Wikipedia
Keywords: AMERICAN LANGUAGE AMERICAN ENGLISH REFERENCE LANGUAGE
Fourth edition. All volumes lack jackets. Front hinge of first volume starting. Alfred A. Knopf, 1962. Good/No Jacket. (Inventory #: 2172303)
Literature, American & Military History, General Antiquarian
Shipping & Return Policies
Unless alternate arrangements have been made, payment is expected at the time of purchase. We accept payment by credit card, PayPal, check, or money order. All orders are shipped promptly and securely packed in boxes to avoid damage during shipment.Shipping costs stated are estimates. Large sets or particularly heavy items may require additional postage, especially for priority or international service.All items are guaranteed to be as described (this includes condition, edition, authenticity of signatures, etc.). If you are not satisfied with your order, please contact us and we will be happy to work with you.Returns are accepted for any reason. Notification of return within 10 days of receipt is appreciated. Please send returns by the most economical method, and you will be refunded upon receipt.
You can be confident that when you make a purchase through ABAA.org, the item is sold by an ABAA member in full compliance with our Code of Ethics. Our sellers guarantee your order will be shipped promptly and that all items are as described. Buy with confidence through ABAA.org.