Monday, October 1, 2012

A Book Only in the Abstract Sense?

One of my companions today has been The Oxford Companion to the Book. While reading the online version, I discovered that I was only reading a book in "the abstract, non-corporeal sense":
book (1): A word that has long been used interchangeably and variously to signify any of the many kinds of text that have been circulated in written or printed forms, and the material objects through which those words and images are transmitted. The ancestor of the modern word ‘book’ is used in both senses in Anglo-Saxon documents. This Oxford Companion is a book in the abstract, non-corporeal sense (and can be thus described in its Internet manifestation), and also in the physical sense of a three-dimensional object in codex format.