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Sue Kocher wrote:
> Sorry if this question has been asked a zillion times...
> But what dictionary do you use as your authoritative source, and why?
> Our Technical Editing department use Webster's Collegiate, but Corporate Communications uses American Heritage (which I also like)--we'd like to set a standard across the company but we need good reasons for advocating one dictionary over another.
> One good reason for us is that we also use the Chicago Manual of Style as our basic style guide resource for things not covered in our own in-house style guide... and the CMoS declares Webster's to be its source also. Other reasons for or against?
Maybe I still have recovered from my days in academia, but nothing
beats the Oxford English Dictionary, so far as I'm concerned. With
all the research behind it, the OED is the closest thing to a
standard that English has.
However, during work hours, I suggest using an abridged version.
Otherwise, you risk being lost in the thousands of examples that
illustrate the history of each word's usage.
If you want reasonably contemporary usage, or a North American one,
add a journalistic style guide to your sources.
Bruce Byfield 604.421.7177 bbyfield -at- progeny -dot- com
Director of Marketing and Communications, Progeny Linux Systems
Contributing Editor, Maximum Linux
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