Originally published by Cambridge University Press in 1967 and then revised as a second edition in 1980, this classic study has never before been available in a paperback edition. This method and plan of the dictionary are basically those of the Oxford English Dictionary, but oral sources have been extensively tapped in addition to detailed coverage of literature published in or about Jamaica since 1655.
The dictionary is a mine of information about the Caribbean and its dialects, about the history of English and its dialects, and about Creole languages and general linguistic processes.
Entries give the pronunciation, part-of-speech and usage labels, spelling variants, etymologies and dated citations, as well as definitions. Systematic indexing indicates the extent to which the lexis is shared with other Caribbean countries: Suriname, Guyana, Trinidad, Barbados, Nicaragua and Belize.
Preface to the Paperback Edition
Inception of the Dictionary and sources used; editorial work; acknowledgements; method and format
Dictionaries and Glossaries Cited
Linguistic Introduction: The Historical Phonology of Jamaican English Bibliography and abbreviations; 1. Introduction to second edition; 2. The phonemes of Jamaican Creole; 3. Range of dialects covered; Historical backgrounds; 5. Historical phonology of Jamaican English, the resources; 6. Accent, intonation and related features; 7. Vowels and dipthongs; 8. Semivowels and continuants; syllabic consonants; 9. Consonants; 10. Reduction of consonant clusters, assimilation, metathesis, etc.; 11. Loss of preliminary unstressed syllables (including aphesis); 12. Intrusives and parasitics
DICTIONARY OF JAMAICAN ENGLISH
F.G. Cassidy was a well-known linguist, the author of Jamaica Talk: Three Hundred Years of the English Language in Jamaica and the chief editor of The Dictionary of American Regional English.
R.B. Le Page taught at the University of the West Indies and the University of York. He is the author of numerous publications, including Creole Language Studies, The National Language Question and Vernacular Literacy.
Must surely become a handbook for any student of West Indian culture and society, attaining as it does almost encyclopedic scale in the information given in the description and history of, for instance, the flora and fauna or the products of Jamaica.