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What They Didn't Say: A Book of Misquotations Hardcover – December 4, 2006


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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Adult/High School—Alas, Shakespeare did not write "Alas, poor Yorick. I knew him well." The textually correct reading is: "Alas, poor Yorick. I knew him, Horatio." So why the change and why do we remember "well" instead of "Horatio?" Knowles provides an explanation for this misremembered quote and about 150 others in her enjoyable and informative collection of things not said or not quite said. The author also includes incorrect attributions and several apocryphal remarks that scholars have not been able to find in the works of their supposed originators. The selections range from the extremely common ("nice guys finish last," "let them eat cake") to the lesser known ("laws are like sausages," "he once shot a publisher"). Throughout, the tone is more casual than scholarly, more informative than authoritative. Knowles strikes a good balance between thoroughness and brevity when tracing the origins of these quotes and sayings. The entries are arranged in an A-Z format, with a simple alphabetical listing of the misquotations at the beginning and a name (author) index at the back. A helpful introduction offers keen observations on how misquotations tend to enter our collective consciousness. The book makes a good circulating volume and can also serve on the reference shelf.—Robert Saunderson, Berkeley Public Library, CA
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Review


"What They Didn't Say: A Book of Misquotations, edited by Elizabeth Knowles, supplies the backstory that comes at the end of Telephone; who said what first and how it changes along the way."--Booklist


"Offers keen observations on how misquotations tend to enter our collective consciousness."--School Library Journal


"The book is full of such interesting material."--Daily Oklahoman


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press (December 4, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0199203598
  • ISBN-13: 978-0199203598
  • Product Dimensions: 7.8 x 0.7 x 5.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,433,526 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Jessica Weissman on May 24, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Lots of fun stuff about famous misquotations. Perfect bathroom reading for liberal arts majors and others with similar aspirations. AND it can help you win bar bets with that boss of yours who is just well-read enough to remember the misquotations.

I just wish it were longer. Not quite enough meat for the price.

Fresh fields and pastures new (NOT!) Gild the lily (NOT!)
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Format: Hardcover
They need to produce a book that correctly gives credit to all those quotes seen on social media. This was a nice read but could have been went more down this road.
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