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This is an auction for THE SURGEON OF CROWTHORNE by Simon Winchester.

"The making of the Oxford English Dictionary was a monumental 50 year task requiring thousands of volunteers. One of the keenest volunteers was a W C Minor who astonished everyone by refusing to come to Oxford to receive his congratulations. In the end, James Murray, the OED's editor, went to Crowthorne in Berkshire to meet him. What he found was incredible - Minor was a millionaire American civil war surgeon turned lunatic, imprisoned in Broadmoor Asylum for murder and yet who dedicated his entire cell-bound life to work on the English language."

Amazon.com review:

"Subtitled "A Tale of Murder, Madness and the Love of Words," this is a remarkable account of the life of W.C. Minor, an American Army surgeon and millionaire who contributed enormously by post to the first, epic edition of the Oxford English Dictionary (OED) while hidden away in obscurity in Berkshire, England. The OED is the most important work of reference ever created, and, given the globalisation of the English language, is likely to remain so for centuries. But when in 1896 Sir James Murray, the editor of the OED, travelled down to Berkshire to find this elusive lexicographer and thank him for all his work, he found Minor in Broadmoor: patient Number 742. Minor was educated, gentlemanly, industrious, and a psychopathic killer, who had gunned down a man at random in the London streets because he believed his victim was an Irish terrorist after his blood. Simon Winchester has dug up a strange and extraordinary life story and turned it into a compelling piece of historical detective work."

More very favourable reviews on Amazon.com.

Paperback 1999.

207 pages.

Very good condition.

The cost of shipping is $3.95.

There is of course no charge for shipping if you collect this book from my shop in Palmerston North following the auction.

Payment within seven days, please.
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  • Seller location: Palmerston North, Manawatu, NZ

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