Today is the birthday of Lexicographer Sir James Murray. According to The Writer's Almanac, Murray "was born in Denholm, Scotland (1837). He was the president of the Philological Society in London, and in 1879 he became the editor of a 10-year project called the New English Dictionary (later known as the Oxford Dictionary). When he died in 1915, more than 30 years after he started work on it, Murray had compiled roughly half of the entries in the Oxford English Dictionary."
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The OED contains definitions, etymologies, alternate spellings, and early quotations and time-lines for words in English.