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The Place of WordsThe Académie Française and Its Dictionary during an Age of Revolution$
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Michael P. Fitzsimmons

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780190644536

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: December 2017

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190644536.001.0001

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The Appearance of the Fifth Edition

The Appearance of the Fifth Edition

(p.90) 5 The Appearance of the Fifth Edition
The Place of Words

Michael P. Fitzsimmons

Oxford University Press

Maradan quickly withdrew from the project, and years later than the stipulated deadline, Smits published the fifth edition, although the work was rushed into print when key figures working on it were proscribed after the coup of fructidor. The Convention had hoped that the dictionary would disseminate the values of the Revolution in the same manner as the earlier edition had for the ideals of absolute monarchy. The fifth edition, however, was filled with anachronistic ideas and suppressed institutions and barely took note of the Revolution, not even mentioning the French Revolution in its list of examples of revolutions. The sole acknowledgment was a brief and utterly inadequate supplement of new words in use since the Revolution, which at only 418 words was a fraction of the dictionary’s content. To the degree that it failed to capture the current state of language, the fifth edition was widely regarded as deficient.

Keywords:   Jean-François de la Harpe, Claude-Marie Gattel, Antoine de Rivarol, Dominique Joseph Garat, Pierre-Jean-Georges Cabanis, abbé Martin Lefebvre de La Roche, Pierre-Louis Roederer, Leonard Snetlage, Jean-Baptiste Antoine Suard, Dictionnaire de l’Académie Française, fifth edition

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