The Oxford English Dictionary, Volume 6
Presents in alphabetical series the words that have formed the English vocabulary from the time of the earliest records down to the present day, with all the relevant facts concerning their form, sense-history, pronunciation, and etymology. It embraces not only the standard language of literature and conversation, whether current at the moment, or obsolete, or archaic, but also the main technical vocabulary, and a large measure of dialectical usage and slang.
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LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - Giles - LibraryThing
This is the one -- not quite the first edition, but the first reprint, in 13 volumes. I bought it 43 years ago, and it's been a regular source of information and enjoyment ever since. Irreplaceable (unless I could afford the later 20 volume edition). Read full review