Sunday, 19 December 2010

the various publication stages of the new OED3

I must admit that I fell into a 'trap' unintentionally set by the OED team (and it was Jack Windsor Lewis who freed me from it).The new OED online version represents various (temporal) stages of publication. Some pronunciations represent the 1989 version, others reflect the state of the art of the 3rd edition.

Here are two examples:

 Take a look at the beige area to the right of the entry. It tells you that the article on 'ingressive' represents the publication stage of 1989 in its online version of November 2010. When you click on "Previous version" you get this:

In the case of 'monophthong' the beige area reveals a publication stage of January 2010, which represents the 3rd edition:
Whether you like it or not, the present OED online version represents different 'gestation' stages. Words within the alphabet range M - R comply with the 2010 standards, words outside this section reflect the state of 1989. There are some minor exceptions to this, however. So you've got to eyeball the beige area.

Here's another example - perishability. The transcription for it is

if you look at the version representing the 3rd edition, but it's
if you click on the version representing the 2nd edition. The transcription symbols look much more agreeable in the new, third-edition style. However, although Clive Upton is pronunciation adviser, the symbols of OED3 are not a hundred per cent identical with what ODP offers. This is what 'perishability' looks like in ODP:
What immediatelly strikes one's eyes are the two symbols in the 2nd and 5th syllables which are different from what appears in OED3. ODP uses a small capital i (without dot) with bar, whereas OED3 prefers barred small i (with dot). It's not what I call uniformity.

There's a new blog entry by Jack Windsor Lewis on this topic here, which I strongly recommend to you. 
Jack Windsor Lewis
(It's got the running number 001, which should actually be 320). The item in question is titled "OED3 Phonetics".

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