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Extra info for Chaucer in Early English Dictionaries: The Old-Word Tradition in English Lexicography down to 1721 and Speght’s Chaucer Glossaries
CONCLUSION The lexicograpical tradition of cautioning against particular words can be traced back to Levins who wanted to warn his readers against using them. As has already been remarked above his way of marking these words is an unobtrusive one. Later English dictionaries are often more emphatic in the condemnation of particular words, for example by putting a dagger or an asterisk in front of them. Levins' dictionary is a rhyming dictionary, the function of which is obviously different from later 'ordinary' dictionaries, and his cautioning against particular words should be seen in this light: he cautions his readers against the literary use of these words.
It is important, however, to remember that in the course of the sixteenth century it had become necessary to gloss the works of older English writers such as Langland and Chaucer, and to gloss words in contemporary archaizing works by Gascoigne and Spenser. Evidently old words were as much of a problem as the more recent Latinate additions to the language. It is not surprising, then, to find Bullokar including old words among the words that were 'hard' in other ways, though the fact is that only the old words were marked with an asterisk.
5. 8. I, p. 160. 9. J. H. ), Francis Thynne's Animadversions, EETS, OS, 9, 1865, repr. 1965. See also Eleanor Prescott Hammond, Chaucer A Bibliographical Manual, New York, 1908, pp. 506- 07. 10. , pp. 186 and 507. 11. In this period cambridge was a centre of antiquarian studies. In Oxford only a small number of scholars was reputed for their interest in antiquarianism. A. A. on 9 July 1603, and who wrote Antiquitatis Academiae Oxoniensis Apologia, 1608, in which Chaucer is mentioned with resgect.