9780877796282 / 0877796289

Merriam-Webster's Dictionary of Allusions





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About the book:

New Yorker founding editor Harold Ross, according to this book's preface, is said to have asked writer James Thurber once, with bewilderment, "Is Moby Dick the man or the whale?" Well, even Homer nods (Horace). But, Harold! Thou shouldst be living at this hour (Wordsworth). Merriam-Webster's Dictionary of Allusions is a Big Rock Candy Mountain (American folk song) for anyone who feels amid the alien corn (Keats) when it comes to understanding allusions everyone else seems to grok (Heinlein). Thanks to the blood, sweat, and tears (Churchill) of authors Elizabeth Webber and Mike Feinsilber--compiling this allusional Rosetta stone must have taken a Herculean, nay Brobdingnagian (Swift) effort--we can come in from the cold (popularized by le Carré) of the dark night of the soul (St. John of the Cross) and dine out on (G. Gordon Liddy and others) these allusions for years to come. --Jane Steinberg

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