Professor Lynda Mugglestone

Fellow and Tutor in English Language and Literature, Professor of the History of English
  • I specialise in the social and cultural history of English, and am really interested in language change and standardisation, language attitudes, and the different kinds of evidence we might use in thinking about the forms of language people use, as well as in what kinds of evidence tends to get recorded -- and what doesn't.

  • I am nearing the end of a research project called the ‘Words in War-Time’ project (funded by the Leverhulme Trust) which examines language change in WWI through the archival collections of Andrew Clark. There is a website which presents some of the findings (see and I have just handed in the book of the project to Oxford University Press. Writing a War of Words. Andrew Clark and the Search for Meaning in WW1 will be published in October 2021. I have also recently co-curated an exhibition on the Art of Advertising at the Weston Library in Oxford, using this to explore the language of advertising as a social witness to the past. See

  • My faculty webpage can be found at:

  • I am Convenor for English language in the Faculty of English, and a Governor of Samuel Johnson's House in London.

Teaching activities

Teaching Activities

I teach the history and development of the English language from Old English to the present day, as well as a range of language-orientated topics from Old English and Chaucer to digital discourse, as well as third-year options on dictionaries and dictionary-making, and a new course (which ran for the first time on 2020) on 'Language, Persuasion, People, Things' . My teaching often focusses on language and ideology in various ways, from advertising and news discourse to issues of gender, identity, and race, though I am also interested in how literary texts, particularly in the Victorian period,  represent voice and aspects of social/ regional/ identity. I also supervise undergraduate dissertation on language and language-related topics.

College & university roles and committees

Member of:

  • Governing Body (Pembroke)
  • Standing Committee (Pembroke)
  • Fellowships Commitee (Pembroke)

Faculty Positions:

  • Teaching Committee
  • News UK Liaison Committee
  • History and English Committee
  • Convenor of English Language 



  • New and forthcoming publications include:


    Writing a War of Words. Andrew Clark and the Seearch for Meaning in WWI (forthcoming, OUP, 2021)

    Samuel Johnson and the Journey into Words (Oxford University Press, revised pb edition 2018).

    Book chapters and articles:

    ‘The Values of Annotation: Reading Johnson Reading Shakespeare’. In Anthony Lee (ed.), Revision and Revaluation: New Essays on Samuel Johnson, University of Deleware Press, 2018, pp.3-24.

    ‘The End of Toleration? Language on the margins in Samuel Johnson’s Dictionary’. In  Standardising English: Norms and Margins in the History of the English Language, edited by Linda Pilliere, Wilfred Andrieu, Valérie Kerfelec and Diana Lewis (Cambridge; Cambridge University Press, 2018), pp. 89-105.

    ‘‘Next to godliness?’. Exploring Cleanliness in Peace and War’, History of European Ideas 45 (2019).

    ''Writing a Modern war': Communication on the move in Andrew Clark’s ‘Words in War-Time’', Communication in the Great War. ed. John Griffiths (Routledge, 2020).

    ‘The language of advertising’. In The Art of Advertising ed. Julie-Anne Lambert (Oxford: Bodleian Publishing, 2020), pp.45-68.

    ‘Identity, enigma, assemblage: John Baskerville’s Vocabulary, or Pocket Dictionary’. In Caroline Archer-Parré, Malcolm Dick and Kate Croft (eds.) Pen and Print: Communication in the Eighteenth Century (Liverpool University Press, 2020).

    ‘‘Conflicted Representations’: Language, Lexicography, and Johnson’s ‘Langscape’ of War’, Eighteenth Century Life (2020)

    ‘Gissing and the Auditory Imagination: Language, Identity, and Estrangement in Born in Exile’, Victoriographies 10  (2020), pp..132-146