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Newsletter#10 - 12/10/02

In this newsletter:

Do you know your holiday and Christmas words?

We’ve all heard the songs and sung along, but do we really know WHAT we’re singing. Holiday songs are steeped in tradition. Some words are from Old English and are not in use today. Others are Latin words or just words from an era long ago. Here are some examples.

"Carol" means a song of joy or praise; especially a Christmas song.

"Frankincense and Myrrh" occur in several songs including "We Three Kings from Orient Are", "The First Noel", and "What Child is This" sometimes known as "Greensleeves". Frankincense is a gum resin obtained from various Arabian and African trees and used in perfumes and as incense, and myrrh is a fragrant gum resin from any of several plants of Arabia and E Africa, used in making incense, perfume, etc.

"Wassail" in "Here we come a-wassailing among the leaves so green" in British English means "to go caroling from house to house at Christmastime", and in "Love and joy come to you, And to you your wassail too" it means "good health" as in toasting to someone’s good health. Wassail also means "the spiced ale or other liquor with which such healths were drunk".

In "Jingle Bells", "bobtail" as in "Bells on bobtail ring" refers to the horse pulling the sleigh, whose tail was often "bobbed" or cut short (a fashion in the 1800s). The "bells" are worn on the horse’s harness or on the sleigh itself because horse’s hoofbeats don’t make noise in snow and it was safer to have bells to alert people to a horse coming along.

So you see, knowing the meanings of words can help make our experiences of a communication (like a song) much more enjoyable.

Check out your dictionary for other common holiday words like "yule" and "auld lang syne" and "Noel".

— Ruth A. Littman

The Random House Webster’s Unabridged Dictionary on CD has been republished and is now available for only $17.95

This has always been one of our most popular dictionaries. For an unabridged dictionary this one has fairly easy to understand definitions. It is also a talking dictionary and installs to disk with sound and graphic files for quick easy reference.

If you normally use an English-as-a-Second-Language (ESL) dictionary, the Random House is a good dictionary to have as an additional reference. First it has more definitions and most definitions have more information about the meaning of a word. It is also a good reference to have around when you want an American definition or pronunciation.

Sure it is an advanced dictionary and you probably would not want to use it as your regular dictionary but when you can’t find a meaning in the ESL dictionary you normally use, this is a good place to turn. Even though it is an advanced dictionary you normally will not have to look up too many words in the definitions to understand them.

If you normally use the Oxford English Dictionary this is a great one to have for a quick reference. It was last updated in 1999 which makes it two years more current than the latest release of the Oxford English Dictionary on CD. It also pronounces the words, which the Oxford English Dictionary does not.

We have sold hundreds of these dictionaries at $27.00. We are now selling them for only $17.95. It is a great stocking stuffer!

For more information go to
ranhouswebun2.html

Here’s what two of our customers have to say about this product:

"I recently purchased the Random House unabridged dictionary on CD-ROM. I have found this very useful. I use it frequently when writing papers for school. I changed one of my shortcut buttons on my keyboard to the dictionary so it opens at the touch of a button whenever I need it. It is much easier and faster than using an old-fashioned dictionary." K.I.

"I bought the Random House Unabridged Dictionary [CD]. I have used the Random House Unabridged quite a bit since I got it and find it really useful and helpful, particularly with my editing work, which is also done on the computer. I like its format and how convenient it is to search with it, as well as look up successive words in a chain and then trace back along the chain." D.L.

New American English dictionary released

It is the New Oxford American Dictionary. This is available as a CD or as a hardback. The original Oxford American Dictionary was highly regarded and this is a major expansion of the earlier dictionary. It continues as to have the earlier dictionary qualities as a dictionary with accurate definitions that are not overly difficult to understand. The New Oxford American English Dictionary is about four times the size of the prior Oxford American Dictionary.

The CD provides a quick reference resource that pops up when you click on a word you want to look up from virtually any window or application.

Hardback:
newoxamdicha.html

CD-ROM: newoxamdiccd.html

Webster’s New World College Dictionary on CD is BACK

This was a popular dictionary known for clear accurate definitions. It is now published as part of a 4 CD collection including a Visual Dictionary and an Encyclopedia. The entire set goes for only $24.99.
dicvisandreg.html

Hardback with CD: List price $34.95 Our Price is only $29.95 webnewworcol.html

Hardback only: List price $23.95 Our price is only $17.00 webnewworcol1.html

A great gift for your more literate friends

For your very literate friends have you considered giving them the 20-volume Oxford English Dictionary that has examples of English Usage back to 1150? This dictionary has definitions that you can find nowhere else. If you know someone who uses or would like to use the Oxford English Dictionary regularly, this is a great gift for them.

List price is $3,000.00, but we sell the 20 Vol. OED for only $875.00 with free shipping to anywhere in the United States!
oxendic20vol.html

It is also available on CD for only $225.00, ($70 below list price!). It installs to disk for ready reference, and the CD includes three addendum volumes which include words introduced into the language up to 1997. oedoxendicse.html

Technical Tips: Installation hint for software you use frequently on PCs

Make it easy to access a program like your dictionary with a simple keystroke! I use Ctrl+Alt+D to start up my favorite dictionary (hold the Ctrl and the Alt key down and then press the D). The following explains how to set this up on your pc.

First check to make sure the keys are not already in use by holding down the Ctrl & Alt keys and then pressing the D key. Nothing should happen. If something does happen you can pick a different combination of keys to start your dictionary. Try this first, though.

To set this up right, find your dictionary in Windows Explorer and then right-click on it. Choose Properties. Click on the Shortcut tab. Click inside the Shortcut key field and press the "d" key. Your computer should display "Ctrl + Alt + D". Click the Okay button and you’re done!

I hope you will use your dictionary whenever you have the slightest bit of confusion on a word. That is better than being totally confused about what you are reading! For more information on Study Techniques please check out:
studyguides.html

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