Ox­ford English Dic­tio­nary adds 600 new words

Hindustan Times (Patna) - Live - - Lifestyle -

The Ox­ford English Dic­tio­nary has added over 600 new words, phrases and senses in its lat­est quar­terly up­date.

Ex­plain­ing how a word qual­i­fies for take-in, OED said that it “re­quires sev­eral in­de­pen­dent ex­am­ples of the word be­ing used, and also with the ev­i­dence that the word has been in use for a rea­son­able amount of time.” More­over, words such as ‘woke’, ‘thing’ or ‘post-truth’ has ac­quired new def­i­ni­tions with the chang­ing times.

“By the mid-20th cen­tury, ‘woke’ had been ex­tended fig­u­ra­tively to re­fer to be­ing ‘aware’ or ‘well in­formed’ in a po­lit­i­cal or cul­tural sense,” the Ox­ford English Dic­tio­nary (OED) said. The use of ‘woke’ by sup­port­ers of the Black Lives Mat­ter movement — an in­ter­na­tional ac­tivist movement that cam­paigns against racism to­ward black peo­ple — and in par­tic­u­lar the phrase ‘stay woke’, are thought to have in­tro­duced the word to a broader au­di­ence, es­pe­cially on so­cial me­dia.

Be­sides, over 50 new words and 30 new senses re­lated to ten­nis were added. ‘Ten­nis mom’ and ‘ten­nis dad’, for ex­am­ple, are now used to de­scribe par­ents who ac­tively sup­port their child’s par­tic­i­pa­tion in the sport. The dic­tio­nary has also got a new end. Zyzzyva, a trop­i­cal wee­vil na­tive to South Amer­ica, is the new last in place of zythum, a kind of malt beer brewed in an­cient Egypt.

Mean­while, the word ‘thing’ has a new sense de­fined as ‘a gen­uine or es­tab­lished phe­nom­e­non or prac­tice used in ques­tions con­vey­ing sur­prise or in­credulity, such as ‘How can that be a thing?’ said OED, adding that the us­age has been traced back to an early episode of TV se­ries, The West Wing.

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