For those of you who are not already aware, the genius has not let the fact that some three-hundred-and-one years have passed since his birth dampen his wit or insight into the modern era. You can follow him on Twitter or indeed purchase his excellent Dictionary of Modern Life. (Whitcoulls have the eBook )
Here are some examples of his definitions about popular speculative works:
AVATAR – Mister Cameron’s blue-skinned dramatick Folly, presented at the cost of all the Treasures of the Americas.
“Bereft of a ticket to see Avatar at the electronick theatre, I daub myself with Woad & place Stained-glass ‘pon my eyes to replickate it.”
DALEK – ironmonger’d Hobgoblin that imperils all creation for up to five-and-forty minutes at a time.
HARRY POTTER – Wizard whose greatest spells have made Publick Schools acceptable to the masses and infant-books acceptable unto adults.
THE LORD OF THE RINGS FILMS – fantasickal epic staged in New Zealand: takes as long to watch as that far country takes to visit.
“Wise Criticks should observe that The Lord of the Rings is no more than two dwarves that set out on a lengthy walk, later beset by Phantasms and bracing scenery.”
In spirit of celebration, I thought I would also have a go at a couple of Johnson definitions:
SPECULATIVE FICTION – Fanciful tales of the technologickal, fantastickal, or diabolickal, conjured by bards that pursue wild imaginings over coin.
TWILIGHT – Lurid saga of an unaccountable romance betwixt a besparkl’d vampire and a milksop maid; much damn’d by criticks for its overwrought prose, fanatickal tween following and prodigious profits.
I encourage others to honour the esteemed maker of dictionaries by composing your own definitions.