Quoth the Maven: More on Language from William Safire

The pulitzer prize-winning columnist discusses contemporary figures of speech, from witty stories about expressions such as "kiss and tell" and "stab in the back" to the evolution of "read my lips. Note: this edition does not include illustrations.

Coming to Terms

Which is not to say that safire’s readers always take the punning pundit at his word: they don’t, and he’s got the letters to prove it. Bringing them all together are dozens of Safire’s most illuminating and witty columns, from “Right Stuffing” to “Getting Whom. When william safire comes to terms, there’s never a dull moment.

John haim of new york sets in concrete what properly to call a cement truck, while Charlton Heston challenges an interpretation of Hamlet’s “to take arms against a sea of troubles” and Gene Shalit passes along his favorite Yogi Berra-ism. Among the entries in coming to terms, this all-new collection of Safire’s “On Language” columns, you’ll read the repartee of Lexicographic Irregulars great and small.

When william safire delineates the difference between misinformation and disinformation or “distances himself” from clichés, people sit up and take notice.

The Right Word in the Right Place at the Right Time: Wit and Wisdom from the Popular "On Language" Column in The New York Times Magazine

He is the most widely read writer on the English language today. Scholarly, entertaining and thoughtful, Safire's critical observations about language and slanguage are at once provocative and enlightening. This collection is a classic to be read, re-read, enjoyed and fought over. Safire is the guru of contemporary vocabulary, language, speech, usage and writing.

Fans, like its predecessors, critics and fellow linguists wait with bated from the French abattre "to beat down" breath for each new anthology -- and, this one is bound to satisfy and delight. The self-proclaimed card-carrying language maven and pop grammarian is not above tackling his own linguistic blunders as he detects language trends and tracks words, phrases and clichés to their source.

For the past twenty-five years americans have relied on pulitzer prize-winning wordsmith William Safire for their weekly dose of linguistic illumination in The New York Times Magazine's column "On Language" -- one of the most popular features of the magazine and a Sunday-morning staple for innumerable fans.

Safire finds fodder for his columns in politics and current events, as well as in science, technology, entertainment and daily life. Exposing linguistic hooey and rigamarole and filled with safire's trademark wisdom, "wassat?" this new collection is sure to delight readers, this book has a place on the desk or bedside table of all who share his profound love of the English language -- as well as his penchant for asking "What does that mean?" Or, writers and word lovers everywhere and spark the interest of anyone who has ever wondered, "Where did the phrase 'brazen hussy' come from?" .

Safire is america's go-to guy when it comes to language, additional examples, and he has included sharp and passionately opinionated letters from readers across the English-speaking world who have been unable to resist picking up a pen to put the maven himself in his place or to offer alternate interpretations, amusing anecdotes or just props.

The right word in the right place at the Right Time is a fascinating, learned and piquant look at the oddities and foibles that find their way into the English language.

Watching My Language:: Adventures in the Word Trade

America's most entertaining language maven is back with more words to live by in his latest exploration of hot catchphrases, syntactical controversies, and other matters of national linguistic importance. Before you scratch that seven-year-itch, you might want to know where it came from. And before someone blurts, "you just don't get it, "  perhaps you should consult the Pulitzer Prize winning language columnist on the origins of that snappy feminist motto.


Language Maven Strikes Again

Good news!  america’s master wordsmith strikes again with a new collection of erudite, sometimes barbed, provocative, witty, frequently hilarious “On Language” columns. Published in the new york times and syndicated in more than three hundred other newspapers, these opinions from the “Supreme Court of Current English Usage” cover everything from the bottom line on tycoonese and the accesses* of computerese to portmanteau words like televangelist and Draconomics the language maven’s own plan for our bloated economy.

Although safire makes an admirable case for adverbs and adjectives, hot off the college campus, advocates of strong verbs will be heartened to hear that he also:  pleads for the preservation of the subjunctive mood; delivers, the latest lingo in which ‘rents means parents and yesterday’s wimps are today’s squids; decries the brevity-is-next-to-godliness literary school; bids farewell to anxiety it’s been replaced by trendy stress or swangst; noodles over such weighty geopolitical questions as “when an intercept of a fighter is a buzz”; bemoans the loss of roughage to fiber; and rides herd over the language spoken in Marlboro Country.

More good news!  safire again spices his own wit and wisdom with correspondence from Lexicographic irregulars, those zealous readers and letter writers who reply to his columns with praise, scorn, corrections and nitpicks—anything to match wits with Super-maven. If you could look it up and take my word for It occupy prominent spots in your bookcase, then Language Maven Strikes Again belongs there too.

If they don’t, then begin with this Safire and work your way back. That’s not a typo—that’s a pun.

How Not to Write: The Essential Misrules of Grammar

He covers a vast territory from capitalization, the double negative, and semi-colons to contractions, run-on sentences, split infinitives it turns out you can split one if done meaningfully, dangling participles, and even onomatopoeia. He tells you the correct way to write and then tells you when it is all right to break the rules.

In this lighthearted guide, he chooses the most common and perplexing concerns of writers new and old. Originally published under the title Fumblerules. These fifty humorous misrules of grammar will open the eyes of writers of all levels to fine style. How not to write is a wickedly witty book about grammar, usage, and style.

William safire, " homes in on the "essential misrules of grammar, the author of the New York Times Magazine column "On Language, " those mistakes that call attention to the major rules and regulations of writing. Each mini-chapter starts by stating a misrule like "Don't use Capital letters without good REASON.

Safire then follows up with solid and entertaining advice on language, grammar, and life.

No Uncertain Terms: More Writing from the Popular "On Language" Column in The New York Times Magazine

William safire has written the weekly New York Times Magazine column "On Language" since 1979. Safire is the beloved, language, usage and writing, slightly crotchety guru of contemporary vocabulary, speech, as close as we are likely to get to a modern Samuel Johnson. Safire examines and comments on language trends and traces the origins of everyday words, phrases and clichés to their source.

There is no wittier, more amiable or more astute word maven than Pulitzer Prize­winning columnist William Safire. Fans, critics and fellow language mavens eagerly await his books on language. For many people, the first item on the agenda for sunday morning is to sit down and read Safire's "On Language" column in The New York Times Magazine, then to compose a "Gotcha" letter to the Times.

Not only "a blast and a half, " but wise, clever and illuminating, it is a book that Mencken would have loved and that should be on the desk or at the bedside of everyone who shares Mr. Want the 411 on what's phat and what's skeevy? here's the "straight dope" on everything from "fast-track legislation" to "the full monty, " "drop a dime" on someone, twist the usage of or misunderstand the meaning of such classic examples of American idiom as "grow'd like Topsy, "go figure" and hundreds more, " with deft and well-directed potshots at those who criticize, together with sharp, " "and the horse you rode in on, witty and passionately opinionated letters from both ordinary readers and equally irate or puzzled celebrities who have been unable to resist picking up a pen to put Mr.

This one is no exception. Safire in his place or to offer detailed criticism, additional examples or amusing anecdotes. Each of his books on language is a classic, to be read, re-read and fought over.

Lend Me Your Ears: Great Speeches in History

Gore decision that changed the landscape of American politics in our time.  . From a pulitzer prize–winning author, this collection of speeches is “the most valuable kind of book, the kind that benefits mind and heart” Peggy Noonan. Speeches in lend me Your Ears span a broad stretch of history, from Gen.

This book provides a wealth of valuable examples of great oratory for writers, speakers, and history aficionados. Editor william safire has collected a diverse range of speeches from both ancient and modern times, from people of many different backgrounds and political affiliations, and from people on both sides of history’s greatest battles and events.

George patton inspiring allied troops on the eve of d-day to pericles’s impassioned eulogy for fallen Greek soldiers during the Peloponnesian War; and from Jesus of Nazareth’s greatest sermons to Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s fiery speech in response to the Bush vs. This third edition of the bestselling collection of classic and modern oratory offers numerous examples of the greatest speeches ever delivered—from the ancient world to the modern.


In Love with Norma Loquendi

The pulitzer prize-winning columnist describes his lifelong fascination with Norma Loquendi--common speech--in a collection of columns that celebrates the mysteries and continual evolution of the English language.

The Lost Continent: Travels in Small Town America

The kind of book steinbeck might have written if he’d traveled with David Letterman. New york magazinean inspiring and hilarious account of one man’s rediscovery of America and his search for the perfect small town. Following an urge to rediscover his youth, Iowa, Bill Bryson left his native Des Moines, in a journey that would take him across 38 states.

From times square to the mississippi river to Williamsburg, Virginia, Bryson's keen and hilarious search for the perfect American small town is a journey straight into the heart and soul of America. Lucky for us, he brought a notebook. With a razor wit and a kind heart, kitsch, Bryson serves up a colorful tale of boredom, and beauty when you least expect it.


Shakespeare: The World as Stage Eminent Lives Series

Bill bryson’s bestselling biography of william shakespeare takes the reader on an enthralling tour through Elizabethan England and the eccentricities of Shakespearean scholarship—updated with a new introduction by the author to commemorate the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s deathWilliam Shakespeare, the most celebrated poet in the English language, left behind nearly a million words of text, but his biography has long been a thicket of wild supposition arranged around scant facts.

With a steady hand and his trademark wit, Bill Bryson sorts through this colorful muddle to reveal the man himself. His shakespeare is like no one else's—the beneficiary of Bryson's genial nature, his engaging skepticism, and a gift for storytelling unrivaled in our time.