1. Linguist Geoff Nunberg weighs in on the recent claim that Jane Austen may have been heavily edited: "She was inconsistent about possessives, and she sometimes put e before i in words like believe and friendship,  but you can find the same thing in the manuscripts of Byron and Scott  and Thomas Jefferson — the rules just weren’t settled yet. In fact, it’s pure anachronism to  describe any of those things as “wrong” or “incorrect”; it’s like  calling Elizabeth Bennet a bachelorette. The modern notion of  correctness was a recent invention in Austen’s time, and to people of  Austen’s sort it smacked of the schoolmaster and the social climber. My  guess is that she would have little use for people who went around  clucking their tongues over misplaced apostrophes in grocers’ signs —  the sort of pedantry she might put in the mouth of Mr. Collins.” View in High-Res

    Linguist Geoff Nunberg weighs in on the recent claim that Jane Austen may have been heavily edited: "She was inconsistent about possessives, and she sometimes put e before i in words like believe and friendship, but you can find the same thing in the manuscripts of Byron and Scott and Thomas Jefferson — the rules just weren’t settled yet. In fact, it’s pure anachronism to describe any of those things as “wrong” or “incorrect”; it’s like calling Elizabeth Bennet a bachelorette. The modern notion of correctness was a recent invention in Austen’s time, and to people of Austen’s sort it smacked of the schoolmaster and the social climber. My guess is that she would have little use for people who went around clucking their tongues over misplaced apostrophes in grocers’ signs — the sort of pedantry she might put in the mouth of Mr. Collins.”

  2. pride and prejudice

    jane austen

    geoff nunberg