Staff and Acknowledgements


Jane Roberts Christian Kay Lynne Grundy
MA, DPhil, DLitt MA, AM, DLitt MA, PhD
University of London University of Glasgow University of London

Acknowledgements for the 1st print edition

We should like above all to thank Michael Samuels, who had the imagination and courage to establish procedures for an historical analysis of the meanings of words. The materials of this thesaurus originated as a research tool for the Historical Thesaurus of English, which he founded at the University of Glasgow. During the years in which these materials were compiled Jane Roberts was grateful for the support first of the University of Glasgow, then of University College Dublin and, from 1969, of King's College London. The King's College Computing Centre has been closely involved in the computer-related aspects of the Thesaurus of Old English, in particular members of its Humanities Division, and more recently of the Research Unit in Humanities Computing. From them we have received unstinting help and advice. Christine Brown designed the program for the microfiche checklist of the Skeleton Old English Thesaurus, of great importance in the early stages of our work. Much of the technical database work, together with the creation of the processes required to go from database to camera-ready copy, was carried out by Harold Short.

There was also assistance with the database work from Gordon Gallacher, and with preparations for printing from Anna Morawska. Similarly, we must thank Ken Browning of Glasgow University Computer Publishing Unit for initial help.

Our debt to the staff of the Historical Thesaurus of English in Glasgow is enormous. We are grateful too for the funding received from the Leverhulme Trust, the British Academy and the Research Strategy Fund of King's College London.

The resources of the standard dictionaries of Old English have been plundered for the basic materials of this thesaurus, and we have looked to countless editions and word studies for a better understanding of a few of the problems presented by these materials without any acknowledgement other than that made here. We are especially grateful for the generosity of Ashley Crandell Amos and Toni Healey of the Dictionary of Old English in making available to us updated versions of their working files, which were invaluable in proofreading the thesaurus materials.

We should like particularly to thank Janet Bately, George Kane, Angus Mclntosh and Eric Stanley for their unfailing encouragement and support. We have benefited from the help of many colleagues and students: Carole Biggam, Tom Chase, Julie Coleman, Susan Cooper, Andreas Fischer, Reinhard Gleissner, Bill Griffiths, Astrid Holtman, Andrew Horton, Günter Kotzor, Erik Kooper, Carole Maddern, Anne Miller, Hiizu Moriyama, Cerwyss O’Hare (née Ower). Mary Palmer, Hans Peters, Liz Reay, Angus Somerville, Sue Stephens, Hannah Stone, Louise Sylvester, Noriko Tachi, and Freda Thornton. Their work, in theses, projects and articles, has contributed to the structure of the classification for the Historical Thesaurus, adapted by Christian Kay for the Thesaurus of Old English. Our debt to Irené Wotherspoon is especially large here. Finally, we wish to thank all those who, at various stages of A Thesaurus of Old English, did the toilsome work of data entry, most of all Flora Edmonds and Ian Hamilton.

Acknowledgements for the 2nd print edition

We have benefited from the help of colleagues, students, reviewers and all those who have made suggestions based on their use of our work. A few names must be added to our earlier acknowledgements: Merja Black, Stewart Brookes, Lucy Hay, Elizabeth Robinson and Kazuyoshi Toeda. And we must thank in particular Jill Singer, who not only keyed in the corrections and additions but kept a watchful eye on anomalies. As before, we owe a special debt to Harold Short, Director of the Centre for Computing in the Humanities (formerly the Research Unit in Humanities Computing) at King's College London. In making these revisions, our colleague Lynne Grundy was constantly in our thoughts: we were greatly saddened by her untimely death in 1997.

Acknowledgements for the online edition

A Thesaurus of Old English was first made available online by Flora Edmonds, alongside Christian Kay, Jane Roberts, and Irené Wotherspoon through a grant by the British Academy (LRG-37362). As a result of the creation of the Historical Thesaurus online platform in 2014, this new online edition was created in 2015 by Fraser Dallachy and Brian Aitken, with input from Marc Alexander and Jane Roberts.


Work on A Thesaurus of Old English was primarily funded by the Leverhulme Trust, the British Academy, and the Research Strategy Fund of King’s College London. As the project was originally a pilot study and a development of the Historical Thesaurus of English, the funders acknowledged there are also relevant to this material.