Former leading New Zealand publisher and bookseller, and widely experienced judge of both the Commonwealth Writers Prize and the Montana New Zealand Book Awards, talks about what he is currently reading, what impresses him and what doesn't, along with chat about the international English language book scene, and links to sites of interest to booklovers.
Saturday, May 21, 2016
The Ultimate Latin Dictionary: After 122 Years, Still At Work On The Letter 'N'
Stefano Rocchi, a researcher on the Thesaurus Linguae Latinae, the comprehensive Latin dictionary that has been in the works since 1894 in Germany. Researchers are currently working on the letters N and R. They don't expect to finish until around 2050. BAdW/Foto Janina Amendt hide caption
toggle caption BAdW/Foto Janina Amendt
On the second floor of an old Bavarian palace in Munich, Germany, there's a library with high ceilings, a distinctly bookish smell and one of the world's most extensive collections of Latin texts. About 20 researchers from all over the world work in small offices around the room. They're laboring on a comprehensive Latin dictionary that's been in progress since 1894. The most recently published volume contained all the words beginning with the letter P. That was back in 2010. And they're not as far along as that may lead you to believe. They skipped over N years ago because it has so many long words, and now they've had to go back to that one. They're also working on R at the same time. That should take care of the rest of this decade. The Thesaurus Linguae Latinae was one of many big, scholarly projects taken on by the German government in the late 19th century. MORE