The origins of the OED

Posted by James Briggs on December 18, 2003

For those of you who can receive the channel, there appears to be a remarkable documentary on BBC TV this evening. For those, and those who can't see it, the preview of the programme in today's Times reads:

BBC One, 10.35pm; N.lreland, 11.15pm
The remarkable story of the Oxford English Dictionary, which took 70 years to complete and included more than 400,000 definitions.
At the centre of this was the relationship between two men: the editor, Professor James Murray, and William Chester Minor, an American surgeon. For 20 years, Minor sent thousands of contributions from a village only 50 miles from Oxford. On many occasions, Murray invited him to visit Oxford, but his offers were always turned down. Murray finally found out that Minor was a murderer, incarcerated in Broadmoor. (A hospital for the 'criminally insane' - JB).