How do you pronounce biopic, synod, and Breughel? - and why? Do our cake and archaic sound the same? Where does the stress go in stalagmite? What's odd about the word epergne? As a finale, the author writes a letter to his 16-year-old self.
This selection of literary texts ranges from the earliest writings in the vernacular up to the time of Chaucer. Spanning almost seven centuries, it encapsulates the foundation and consolidation of literature written in English.