Shortly after the publication of Professor Hans Wehr's Arabisches Worterbuch fur die Schriftsprache der Gegenwari in 1952, the Committee on Language Programs of the American Council of Learned Societies recognized its excellence and began to explore means of providing an up-to-date English edition. Professor Wehr and I really reached agreement on a plan to translate, edit, and enlarge the dictionary. This task was considerably lightened and hasted by generous financial support from the American Council of Learned Societies, the Arabian American Oil Company, and Cornell University.
This dictionary will be welcome not only to English and American users, but to orientalists throughout the world who are more at home with English than with German. It is more accurate and much more comprehensive than the original version, which was produced under extremely unfavorable conditions in Germany during the late war years and the early postwar period.
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