Thursday, March 15, 2018

Glossing over glossary

By stubbornly refusing to look up the definition of glossary even though glossary is all about definition, I missed it over two long pages in the one post.
And there's no way I'm getting away with using 'ossary' in the title of my post without it seeming forced so that's out.

As the more learned who (along with the less learned, are not reading blogs as they're too busy checking their Facebook posts and tweets and email) can tell you, a glossary is a short dictionary or it is the list at the back of a book explaining unusual or difficult words in the text. There are a hundred and three million results; a lot more than you would see in a glossary.

One explanation, say off into the margin, is a gloss or gloss word. A collection of these is a glossary.


We had a bottle collection on the farm. Now when I say, had a collection, they were bottles that were out in a certain spot as you don't basically cart as many things off the farm as you sort. Recycling wasn't a term but it didn't need to be.

I think we can take it as read that there are newsgroups and wikis and message boards stroke forums on bottle collecting, bottle collectors, bottle collections. Even though dictionaries and encyclopedias are more suited in a way to dealing with all collector efforts, I imagine there are ones devoted to this particular pursuit.

Among the countless other options we can ask a Q&A site "What kinds of bottles were around in Australia in 1922?" or ask Yandex for results relating to bottle collecting and pull up 25 million.

Where does the glossary fit into all this? Well it depends on whether your book about bottle collecting contains terms that aren't generally well known. A thesis that was published online is going to retain its glosses regardless of the format it's been moved to.


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