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Language expert Professor David Crystal to deliver annual Hopkins Lecture

David Crystal 150 Friday 19 February 2016

World-renowned language expert Professor David Crystal OBE will return to the city in which he studied to deliver Liverpool Hope University’s annual Hopkins lecture.  

Professor Crystal, who has written more than 100 books and presented programmes for BBC TV and the Discovery Channel, will give a lecture titled ‘Where have all the dialect words gone? Hopkins and a disappearing dictionary.’

Professor Crystal attended St Mary’s College in Crosby as a teenager, before going on to read English at University College London (1959-62). He is Honorary Professor of Linguistics at the University of Wales, Bangor.

He will discuss the old dialect words he included in his 2015 book The Disappearing Dictionary, and ask if any of them are still being used in Liverpool and Lancashire. He will also talk about the small but important role Gerald Manley Hopkins played in this dialect story.  

The annual Hope Hopkins Lecture is hosted by the Department of English, and focuses on contemporary writing and language.

It is named after the Victorian poet Gerard Manley Hopkins, who lived and worked at what is now the university’s Creative Campus on Shaw Street.

The Liverpool Hope Hopkins Lecture 2016:

Friday 4th March,  5.00pm drinks reception, 5.30pm start.

EDEN Lecture Theatre, Liverpool Hope University, Taggart Avenue. 

Open to all. Free admission but please book a place via

Department of English at Liverpool Hope 


About Professor David Crystal

David Crystal’s authored works are mainly in the field of language, including several Penguin books, but he is perhaps best known for his two encyclopaedias for Cambridge University Press, The Cambridge Encyclopaedia of Language and The Cambridge Encyclopaedia of the English Language.

Recent books include Words in Time and Place: Exploring Language through the Historical Thesaurus of the Oxford English Dictionary(2014), You Say Potato: a book about accents (2014, with actor son Ben Crystal), The Oxford Illustrated Shakespeare Dictionary (April 2015, also with Ben), and The Disappearing Dictionary: a treasury of lost English dialect words (May 2015). Other co-authored books include Words on Words (2000, a dictionary of language quotations compiled with his wife and business-partner, Hilary - Wheatley Medal, 2001), Wordsmiths and Warriors: the English-Language Tourist's Guide to Britain (2013, with Hilary), and Shakespeare’s Words (2002) and The Shakespeare Miscellany (2005), the last two in collaboration with Ben. 

He is currently patron of the International Association of Teachers of English as a Foreign Language (IATEFL) and the Association for Language Learning (ALL), president of the UK National Literacy Association, and an honorary vice-president of the Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists, the Institute of Linguists, and the Society for Editors and Proofreaders. He was Sam Wanamaker Fellow at Shakespeare’s Globe in 2003-4 and was honorary president of the Johnson Society for 2005-6. He has also been a member of the Board of the British Council and of the English-Speaking Union. He now lives in Holyhead, where he is the director of the Ucheldre Centre, a multi-purpose arts and exhibition centre.

He received an OBE for services to the English language in 1995, and was made a Fellow of the British Academy (FBA) in 2000.

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