Oxford Dictionary

What is the best dictionary for word lovers?

All word enthusiasts have their own favorite online or in-print dictionaries.<p>I’ve always been loyal devotee of the <i>Oxford English Dictionary,</i> but now …

Public Relations

Davos jargon: A crime against the English language?

<b>The annual World Economic Forum takes place amid freezing temperatures in snowy Davos, but inside the myriad meeting rooms and conference halls, there's more than a little hot air.</b><p>Some of this is generated by a form of English unique to this gathering, which can be mystifying - even to the seasoned …

World Economic Forum

Rocker’s ‘greatest’ show turns into a circus

US jurisprudence awaits the outcome of an intriguing courtroom clash. Rap-rocker Kid Rock, the self-styled “American Bad Ass”, was set to take his …

Entertainment

The Merriam

As all Kerrang! readers should know, to refer to something (an act, an object, a state of mind, a breed of cat) as ”very metal” is high praise …

Language

We Overestimate Science’s Proximity to Progress. Community Is Just as Crucial.

Science is touted so frequently as a synonym for “progress” that I sometimes wonder when the <i>Oxford English Dictionary</i> will take the step of …

Johns Hopkins University

What Does It Mean To Be A ‘Trump Supporter’?

“Do you support Trump?” It is one of the most loaded and divisive questions that can be asked in America today. But what does it mean? What does a …

Conservative View

'Misdemeanor': Not Always a Crime

Among words that name crimes, <i>misdemeanor</i> gets off easy. Today it officially designates a minor legal offense, but in the past it had meanings that …

Etymology

Here's Why People Say 'Don't Let The Bedbugs Bite'

“Good night. Sleep tight. Don’t let the bedbugs bite.”<p>For most adults, it’s a familiar little rhyme, a throwback to childhood. For those in major cities like New York ― where <i>real</i> bedbugs turn once-happy people into balls of despair and anxiety ― it can also conjure a visceral sense of terror. Say …

Language

reposado, n. : Oxford English Dictionary

1982 <i>Los Angeles Times</i> 1 July 22 (<i>advt.</i>) Imported tequilas... Herradura Reposado.<p>1987 <i>Toronto Star</i> (Metro ed.) 12 Aug. a17/6 Included in the recall [of …

Language

magnoperate, v. : Oxford English Dictionary

<b>1.</b> <i>trans.</i> To make greater. <i>rare.</i><p>1610 A. Hopton <i>Baculum Geodæticum</i> Ep. Ded. sig. A2 Which will not a little magnoperate the splendor of your well knowne …

Language

discumbent, n. and adj. : Oxford English Dictionary

<b>A.</b> n.<p>Thesaurus »<p><b>1.</b> A dinner guest; <i>spec.</i> one who reclines while dining.<p>1562 W. Bullein <i>Bk. Use Sicke Men</i> f. lxxiiiv, in <i>Bulwarke of Defence</i> He cast …

Language

Will a Renaissance in Board Games Boost Hasbro?

Hasbro has been tapping into the growing trend of "hygge." Will this demographic shift spell increased profits for the company?<p>Growing up, board …

Stocks

Closing the door on English in Iran

The ban on teaching English in Iranian primary schools made me think of my old OED — and King Kong<p>Last week, after two weeks of protests in Iran, the country’s High Education Council announced that teaching English is now banned from Iranian primary schools. The announcement has me thinking about …

Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini

Here's Why Norway Is Consistently Rated The Best Place In The World To Live

When Simon and Julie Irgens’ first child, Henning, was born, they both took several months of parental leave to be at home with their newborn ― some time together, some on their own. They did the same two years later when Henning’s little sister Inez was born, and the same again when Axel, now two, …

OECD

Intersectionality for Dummies

I’m a former English professor, so I’m familiar with the jargon literary theorists often use—aporia, hermeneutics, deconstruction, and the French</i> …

Conservative View

Eeyorish, adj. : Oxford English Dictionary

1992 <i>Times</i> 13 July (Life & Times section) 3/5 ‘There are days when nothing much seems funny at all. Being a comic novelist can get a chap down, you …

Language

Mumbo jumbo

Mumbo jumbo is a term that dates back to the mid-eighteenth century. We will examine the definition of mumbo jumbo, where it came from and some …

Grammar

Freegan and freeganism

<b>Freegan</b> and <b>freeganism</b> are words that were added to the <i>Oxford English Dictionary</i> in 2015. We will examine the definitions of the terms <i>freegan</i> and</i> …

Grammar

The Oxford English Dictionary Forgot to Include This Word for 50 Years | Reader's Digest

Dmitry Elagin/Shutterstock<p>The dictionary is probably your go-to source for checking facts and spelling. But these little books have a surprising …

Language

Where the slang term 'lit' came from and how big brands ruined it

In the good old days (a phrase the Oxford English Dictionary dates back to the 1720s) to say that something was "lit" meant only the object of …

Language

Where does Donald Trump’s new favourite word come from?

In <i>Polite Conversation</i>, Jonathan Swift presents dialogues made up of clichés, banalities and catchphrases. When Miss Notable makes a remark seen as witty, Mr Neverout exclaims: ‘Why, Miss, you shine this Morning like a shitten Barn-Door.’<p>Perhaps we might not admit such an adjective, even in this …

Language

Twitter accounts track words new to The New York Times

If you’ve ever been surprised to see unlikely word pop up in the staid pages of The New York Times and other publications, welcome to our brave new …

Public Relations

Swatting

<b>Swatting</b> is a word that has taken on a new meaning in the twenty-first century. We will examine the definition of <i>swatting,</i> where it came from and …

Grammar

A House Is Not a Hole: (Not) Caring about What Trump Says

When, in the service of discriminating against migrants from Haiti, El Salvador, and the whole of Africa, the world’s most powerful leader refers to …

Howard Stern

Paleography à la Française

Signatures from the first deposition in the Anne Lamarque case. Fonds Judiciaire BANQ Vieux-Montréal, June 1682. Photo taken by author.<p><b>Note From</b> …

Language

God's penny, n. : Oxford English Dictionary

1340 <i>Ayenbite</i> (1866) 91 (<i>MED</i>) Þe loue of herte, þet is þe godes peny huer-mide me bayþ alle þe guodes of þe wordle.<p>1490 in J. D. Marwick <i>Extracts Rec.</i> …

Language

momist, n. : Oxford English Dictionary

1597 T. Morley <i>Plaine & Easie Introd. Musicke</i> Ded. sig. A2 Insulting momistes who think nothing true but what they doo themselues.<p>1619 H. Hutton</i> …

Language

A Lesson in Coping – How to Join Trim

A job with moldings that meet at multiple inside corners offers many opportunities to practice coping. This reception desk, which I built several …

Woodworking

Feeling Demoralized Lately?

‘Demoralization’ is the word that currently burbles up at 3 a.m., like the red pepper flakes in a second helping of spaghetti. Demoralization is …

Conservative View

Can You Really 'Grow' the Economy?

Grammar and usage peeves, much like the meanings of words, shift and change in curious and unpredictable ways. Some, such as the notion that one …

Etymology