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Carreter worked to improve the way the Spanish language is spoken and written, and penned the hugely popular 1997 book El Dardo en la Palabra (The Dart in the Word), a collection of articles he wrote on linguistic gaffes in the media. Lázaro Carreter was a member, occupying the Seat "R", of the prestigious Royal Spanish Academy (Real Academia Española), the language's official referee, since 1972 until his death, and was its president for seven years, 1992-1998. He taught at the Autonomous University of Madrid.