An Exaltation of Larks: The Ultimate Edition Paperback – Nov 1 1993
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
No Kindle device required. Download one of the Free Kindle apps to start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, and computer.
To get the free app, enter your e-mail address or mobile phone number.
About the Author
James Lipton is the creator, executive producer, writer, and host of Inside the Actors Studio, which is seen in eighty-nine million homes in America on the Bravo network, and in 125 countries, and has received fourteen Emmy nominations. He is the author of the novel Mirrors, which he then adapted and produced for the screen, and of the American literary perennial An Exaltation of Larks, and has written the book and lyrics of two Broadway musicals. His television productions include Jimmy Carter’s Inaugural Gala, the first presidential concert ever televised; twelve Bob Hope birthday specials, reaching record-breaking audiences; and The Road to China, the first American entertainment program from the People’s Republic. He is a vice president of the Actors Studio, is the founder and dean emeritus of the Actors Studio Drama School at Pace University, has received three honorary PhDs, is a recipient of France’s Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres, and has been awarded the Lifetime Achievement Emmy by the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.
Inside This Book(Learn More)
Top Customer Reviews
Just a few gems:
An Advance of Authors
A Royalty of best-selling Authors
An Engima of Mystery Writrs
A Bosum of Romance Writers
A Blizzard of Quotes
A Tedium of Footnotes
A Providence of Publishers
THis ought to wet your appetite..but how come no word for a collection of bibliophiles . Is a Reading of Books legit for a bunch of books?
Maybe you get the point;it's great fun to come up with your own.
By the way;we know about puns,aphorisms,maxims,and so on,but what is the term for these 'collection' words?
You gotta get this book ,learn a few new ones every day,make up new ones,drive everyone around you bonkers,or even worse,have them imitating you.
A few of the choicer phrases are shown below, although of course it's difficult to pick out just a few gems when there is a treasure trove within these covers:
A rash of dermatologists;
A pound of Englishmen;
A solidarity of Poles;
An outback of Aussies;
A quicksand of credit cards;
A thrill of brides;
A convulsion of belly dancers;
An insanity of clauses.
Lipton gives all sorts of fascinating background on the existing phrases and provides many good reasons for the ones he makes up. The result is a hoot, and lots of fun to read aloud to your friends and family. Accompanying the text are superb, crisp old engravings of everything under the sun, each appropriate to the particular section in which it appears (sections include "Romance and Raunch," "People, Places & Things," "The Unknown," "The Unexpected," "Professions," and more). "An Exaltation of Larks" is the perfect gift for the word-lover who has everything else.
Many of these terms are commonplace: plague of locusts, pride of lions, litter of pups. Imagine, though, hearing these expressions for the first time. Lipton invites us to "sharpen our senses by restoring the magic to the mundane."
Lipton traced a number of these terms back to the 1400s, specifically to THE BOOK OF ST. ALBANS, printed in 1486. In addition to today's ordinary terms, he discovered some that had a fresh sound, precisely because they had not made the 500-year journey to our modern era.
Lipton identifies six sources of inspiration for the terms. He lists these "Families" with the following examples:
1. Onomatopoeia: a murmuration of starlings, a gaggle of geese.
2. Characteristic (by far the largest Family): a leap of leopards, a skulk of foxes.
3. Appearance: a knot of toads, a parliament of owls.
4. Habitat: a shoal of bass, a nest of rabbits.
5. Comment (pro or con depending on viewpoint): a richness of martens, a cowardice of curs.
6. Error (in transcription or printing; sometimes preserved for centuries): "school" of fish was originally intended to be "shoal."
Lipton enthusiastically joined the "game" of coining terms, which had been in progress for more than 500 years. In 1968 he published his first EXALTATION OF LARKS, which contained 175 terms -- some from Middle English, some original. Neither the hardbound nor the paperback edition went out of print before the Ultimate Edition (with more than 1,000 terms) was published in 1991.Read more ›
Would you believe such sayings have a tangible history, and have been planned?
This is the topic of James Lipton's sometimes humorous but always classic book, An Exaltation of Larks. If you've ever the privledge of watching the actor's studio, then you know of James Lipton--one of television's finest interviews and hosts.
In 1968, he wrote a book about the beauty and flexibility of the English language called an Exaltation of Larks. It is a study of the English-speaking tradition of coupling words to describe a set, where both words indicate the same thing, such as "a rope of pearls" and "a school of fish."
For the first part of the book, Mr. Lipton list the more common phrases and the research that has gone into finding out their meaning--where, for instance, "a pride of lions" originated and how long ago it was first used. (The oldest in the English langauge, apparently!)
Where the 1968 edition--which has never been out of print--had only had 118 pages and 175 terms, the Ultimate edition has 300 pages and 1,100 terms.
This would make a very fine gift for any Anglophile, artist, writer or comic. Witty, warm, and extremely observant, with clever line illustrations; a plus to any friend's library or your own.
Most recent customer reviews
A very interesting read and useful as a reference book.
Only reason it did not receive 5 stars is that it was missing pages 55 through 86. Read more
The new version of this book now has an index, with the ability to enter the names given to groups
This feature was absent from the old version
This latest version has... Read more
This is great for someone who loves the English language - not only full of information, but really fun to look at and pick up from time to time.Published on Nov. 30 2011 by Joanne Iliopoulos
mr. Liton was my acting coach when I lived in New York. I was studying to be a methodist actor. That's when you become the character. Read morePublished on Dec 29 2003 by monkeytot
This is a great book for those who love words. I ordered it because I was fascinated with the fact that a group of ravens is called a "murder. Read morePublished on June 19 2003 by Elise Paxson
This book is absolutely fascinating, and I thought it would by out of print by now. I am thrilled that there is a new updated version, and am going to order two copies; one for us... Read morePublished on March 9 2002 by Daphne W Cheatham
If you have reluctant young readers it the house, buy this book and put it in the bath room or lay it on the cereal table. Read morePublished on Sept. 3 2001 by The Accidental Reader
Look for similar items by category
- Books > Education & Reference > Words, Language & Grammar > Alphabet
- Books > Education & Reference > Words, Language & Grammar > Linguistics
- Books > Education & Reference > Words, Language & Grammar > Vocabulary
- Books > Humour & Entertainment > Humour > Parodies
- Books > Politics & Social Sciences > Social Sciences > Linguistics > Applied