The Lexicon: A Cornucopia of Wonderful Words for the Inquisitive Word Lover
Those who find their equanimity challenged by the lucubrations of William F. Buckley Jr. will surely see their torpor evanesce after reading The Lexicon. Monosyllabically: if it bugs you when you read words you don’t know, this book will help. Buckley is renowned (and sometimes unfairly reviled) for his extensive working vocabulary, from which he unerringly picks the right word for every occasion. The Lexicon is a pocket guide to his esoterica with several hundred entries, each concisely defined and accompanied by an example of its use from his writings, which is quite a handy feature. For example: lucubrate (verb) To discourse learnedly in writing.
Under the Eisenhower program, one could lucubrate over constitutional rights and freedoms and forever abandon captured American soldiers. It is a sign of his skill as a writer that the book may be read for pleasure. Illustrations by Arnold Roth add to the enjoyment, making this the perfect introduction to Buckleyian erudition. --Rob Lightner
This boon to logophiles, culled from Buckley: The Right Word, presents the author’s most erudite, outré, and interesting words - from prehensile and sciolist to rubric and histrionic - complete with definitions, examples, and usage notes. Introduction by Jesse Sheidlower; illustrations by Arnold Roth.