The First Major English Language Dictionary:

Samuel Johnson, A Dictionary of the English Language: in which the words are deduced from their originals, and illustrated in their different significations by examples from the best writers. To which are prefixed, a history of the language, and an English grammar. London: W. Strahan, 1755.

GEM. n. f. [gemma, Latin.]

1. A jewel; a precious stone of whatever kind.

Stones of small worth may lie unseen by day;
But night itself does the rich gem betray. Cowley [1669]


FLOWER. n. f. [fleur, French; flos, flores, Latin.]

1. The part of a plant which contains the seeds.

Good men’s lives
Expire before the flowers in their caps, [“waste”]
[from Shakespeare’s Macbeth, 1623]

Though the same sun with all-diffusive rays
Blush in the rose and in the diamond blaze, [flower vs. gem]
We praise the stronger effort of his power,
And always set the gem above the flower. [from Alexander Pope, 1736]

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