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ELEMENTS OF STYLE, The, known informally as the little book. A short (85-page) prescriptive and proscriptive American work on prose STYLE by William Strunk Jr., a professor at Cornell U. in New York State. It is widely considered a classic of its kind. Strunk used the text as teaching material from at least 1919, first publishing it in book form in 1935, with Edward A. Tenney. The later, better-known editions ( Macmillan, 1959, 1972, and 1979) were revised and extended by E. B. White, a writer and former student of Strunk's. In his introduction, White refers to Elements as ‘Bill Strunk's parvum opus’. There are five chapters to the Strunk and White editions: Elementary rules of usage; Elementary principles of composition; A few matters of form; Words and expressions commonly misused; and An approach to style. See EFFECTIVE WRITING, USAGE GUIDANCE AND CRITICISM.