Plain Words

New edition

Paperback (26 Mar 2015)

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Publisher's Synopsis

'Be short, be simple, be human.'

When Sir Ernest Gowers first wrote Plain Words, it was intended simply as a guide to the proper use of English for the Civil Service. Within a year, however, its humour, charm and authority had made it a bestseller. Since then it has never been out of print.

Six decades on, writer Rebecca Gowers has created a new edition of this now-classic work that both revises and celebrates her great-grandfather's original. Plain Words has been updated to reflect numerous changes in English usage, yet Sir Ernest's distinctive, witty voice is undimmed. And his message remains vital: our writing should be as clear and comprehensible as possible, avoiding superfluous words and clichés - from the jargon of 'commercialese' to the murky euphemisms of politicians.

In a new preface, this edition draws on an extensive private archive, previously hidden away in family cupboards and attics, to tell the story behind a book that has become an institution: the essential guide to making yourself understood.

Book information

ISBN: 9780241960349
Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
Imprint: Penguin Books
Pub date:
Edition: New edition
DEWEY: 808
DEWEY edition: 23
Language: English
Sales rank: 8590
Number of pages: 320
Weight: 236g
Height: 199mm
Width: 129mm
Spine width: 20mm