Sunday, October 05, 2008

Somehow Reading the OED Online For Free

After hearing an interview with Ammon Shea, author of Reading the OED, on the Bob Edwards Show a few days ago (and still thinking somewhat obsessively of the life/death of OED-obsessed David Foster Wallace), I went to the Oxford English Dictionary website this cloudy afternoon.

Expecting to find out how much it costs to subscribe online (and seeing that the OED is going for a special low, low 80th Anniversary price of $895), I plugged in a word (I think it was "thyroid") and was given a definition. For free. I plugged in another, got another luxuriously long, captivatingly cost-free definition, and noticed at the bottom a note that read "Subscriber: College of Santa Fe".

My IP address via Comcast is obviously being confused for one used by The College of Santa Fe. I plan on never shutting my computer down again. I also think this explains why the College of Santa Fe is just about bankrupt.

I'd be interested for others to try out the OED site as well. Any fabulously free definitions?

P.S.: I now know that "faamafu" is a Samoan home-brewed liquor, and "facinorous" means: "Extremely wicked, grossly criminal, atrocious, infamous, vile. Said both of persons and their actions. Very common in 17th c." As in "my facinorous purloinment of OED definitions sans proper remuneration reeks of outre outrageousty." Cue word-lusting drool sequence now....

1 comment:

Gerald said...

Cool. Here in Tempe I'm getting it through ASU. Do you not wish to blether for the betterment of America's (No) Choice?