The Oxford English Dictionary (OED): 90 Years Young

The Oxford English Dictionary (OED) is a historical dictionary of the English language, published by Oxford University Press. The OED documents the development of the English language by providing definitions and evidence of earliest documented use for any English word. The volumes of the first edition were published 1884–1928. The complete new second edition, owned by the WKU Library, was published in 1989. (Reference Collection, Call No. PE1625 .O87 1989) 



The history of the OED started in 1857, but publication took another three decades. In 1895, the title The Oxford English Dictionary (OED) was first used unofficially on the covers of the series, and in 1928 the full dictionary was republished in ten bound volumes. In 1933, the title The Oxford English Dictionary fully replaced the former name in all occurrences in its reprinting as twelve volumes with a one-volume supplement. Supplements have been continually issued. Since 2000, compilation of a third edition of the dictionary has been underway, expected sometime after 2030! 



The first electronic version of the dictionary was made available in 1988. The Oxford English Dictionary Online (OED Online)  has been available since 2000. There is a high probability that the third edition of the dictionary will most likely only appear in electronic form. The Nancy Thompson Library at Kean University has a digital subscription. ( You may be asked to identify your Kean affiliation by signing in with your Kean Google ID name and password.