Balderdash and Piffle
|Balderdash and Piffle|
|Starring||Victoria Coren et al.|
|No. of episodes||15 (+1 follow-up)|
|Running time||30 Minutes|
|Original channel||BBC Two|
|Picture format||720x576 (anamorphic 16:9)|
|Original run||2 January 2006 – 6 July 2007|
Balderdash and Piffle was a British television programme made by Takeaway Media for the BBC. Presented by Victoria Coren, it was a companion to the Oxford English Dictionary's Wordhunt, in which the writers of the dictionary asked the public for help in finding the origins and first known citations of a number of words and phrases.
The OED panel consisted of John Simpson, the Chief Editor of the OED; Peter Gilliver, who was also the captain of the Oxford University Press team in University Challenge: The Professionals; and Tania Styles, who also appeared in "dictionary corner" in Countdown.
The first series of Balderdash & Piffle was originally broadcast in January 2006, each programme being based around a letter. Following the conclusion of the first series, a follow-up episode aired on 16 April 2006 with updates on the discoveries members of the public had made, resulting in several further changes to the dictionary.
A new Wordhunt was launched in January 2007 and the results featured in the second series of the programme which began on Friday 11 May at 10pm on BBC Two.
The second series was divided thematically. Victoria Coren was joined by guest reporters who attempted to trace the etymology and first documentary use of words, based on suggestions from the British public. Victoria Coren then took the evidence they had found to a panel of OED staff, who decided whether this evidence was sufficient to include in the dictionary.
Balderdash and Piffle is also the name given to two books written by Alex Games. The first, titled Balderdash and Piffle was published by BBC Books in 2006. A second book, also by Alex Games and published by BBC Books, is titled Balderdash and Piffle: One sandwich short of a dog's dinner and accompanied the second series of the show.
- BBC Balderdash and Piffle site[dead link]
- Oxford English Dictionary's Balderdash and Piffle site
- Takeaway Media, the producers of the series, with more on each programme
- More information on the Balderdash and Piffle books
- Balderdash and Piffle at the Internet Movie Database