History of the Oxford English Dictionary

In 1857 the members of the Philological Society of London agreed between themselves that the existing dictionaries for the English lanaguage were incomplete and therefore a re-examination of the language was required.

The project proceeded slowly after the Society’s first grand statement of purpose. Eventually, in 1879, the Society made an agreement with the Oxford University Press and James A. H. Murray to begin work on a New English Dictionary (as the Oxford English Dictionary was then known).

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