National Dictionary Day:
National Dictionary Day is observed on the 16th of October every year. It is being celebrated on this day because Noah Webster, who is considered the Father of the American Dictionary, was born on October 16.
Related: Other National Days Celebrated on October 16th:
Why National Dictionary Day?
Who doesn’t know about the dictionary and its uses and advantages. Although today, many of us prefer a digital dictionary will remain the same. People forget about the importance of the dictionary day by day. Today, everyone can afford a smartphone, and that device took the place of many other small devices and other important things. And one of them is the dictionary. If we want to know the meaning of a particular word, we directly google it and there come to hundreds of results about the same.
Noah Webster, the Father of the American Dictionary, started giving special attention to other dictionaries with a more British accent and compared it with American English. The languages of both regions were quite different. To make these differences crystal clear, he started writing an American English dictionary where Americans can find accents and spelling used by Americans. He removed the letter ‘u’ from many words because Americans do not pronounce that, or their accent is a little different. He made the words labor, labor and color, color, flavor, flavor and harbor, harbor and splendor, splendor, and similar to this, he changed many words according to the American accent. When he published his first dictionary in 1807, ‘A Compendious Dictionary of the English Language,’ it didn’t get much attention then. Noah Webster worked on other different languages. He learned 26 languages, including Sanskrit, German, Spanish, Latin, Greek, Hebrew, and many more.
Noah Webster worked hard continuously for about 27 years, and after that, he published another dictionary,’ An American Dictionary of the English Language.’ After publishing this masterpiece, he gained much popularity that people started learning new words with different spellings and pronunciations from this dictionary. Noah Webster only focused on improving American English, which is why he created such a masterpiece. He was a linguist patriot who didn’t want his countrymen to learn British English anymore. He argued about many spellings and pronunciations for the American accent. When he searched in the classrooms in America, he found out that many of them were still using British English-based textbooks, and that clicked Noah Webster to emphasize more on American English. He even talked to George Washington regarding the rise of British English in America. Noah Webster mainly focused on the culture and the American English accent and British English threat for American society.
How can we celebrate National Dictionary Day:
National Dictionary Day can be celebrated in various ways. Everyone can’t learn or read every word of the dictionary, but we can learn at least ten new words on this day.
At school, teachers could motivate and teach their students the importance of language in our lives, especially American English.
Small activities could be done in classrooms to develop interest among students regarding learning new words every day.
Word games like Scrabble could be played at home, and the pictures of the same could be clicked. You can also post pictures of you celebrate National Dictionary Day on your social media accounts using #NationalDictionaryDay.
Make a dictionary an important part of your life.
Teachers can organize a fun activity in the classroom in which a dictionary must be used. There are a lot of dictionary-based games like balderdash that can be played in the classroom.
Puzzles and many projects could be conducted in the classroom to cultivate interest among students regarding the American English language.
Interesting Facts About National Dictionary Day:
- Noah Webster, Father of the American Dictionary and a lexicographer, was born on the 16th of October. That is why it is being celebrated as the National Dictionary Day every year.
- He even removed the letter ‘u’ from many words, like the converted spelling of the word labor to labor, color to color, honor to honor, and many more. He focused more on an American accent and then developed a dictionary similar to that.
- He first published his dictionary, ‘A Compendious Dictionary of the English Language.’ It was first published in 1807. But the masterpiece was ‘An American Dictionary of the English Language,’ which took about 27 years to get completed and finally got completed in 1828.
- To write and complete this dictionary, Noah Webster learned many other languages like Sanskrit, German, Spanish, Greek, Italian, French, and in total, 26 languages.
History of National Dictionary Day:
Noah Webster has made a huge contribution to the American English language, and that is why on his birth anniversary, i.e., on the 16th of October, we celebrate National Dictionary Day.
Noah Webster did survey many classrooms in America, and as a result, he found that in many places, British English textbooks were still in practice, so he decided to make a complete American English Dictionary in which the culture and accent and pronunciation of the American language could be survived.