Webster's Announces New Words

By: Ryan Famuliner Email
By: Ryan Famuliner Email

If you think you are good with words, wait until this fall.

Merriam-Webster announced they are adding one hundred words to their next edition of the dictionary.

Armed with a sample of some of the new words, we headed to a professional, a librarian.

"’Agnalotti - which is just a type of pasta?’ I've never heard of that. ‘But then there's Bollywood.’ Oh yea, the Indian musicals,” Librarian Frances Walters said

A lot of the words are slang, but Webster’s determined they were used enough to be included in the dictionary.

Words like...

“Ginormous, yes I have used it. I've heard it and I think it’s descriptive,” said Walters.

Another expert is not as keen.

"I suppose it's a legion of gigantic and enormous, but ginormous, I don't think there's a lot of pleasure in saying that. I'd be surprised if that gets used in oral speech a lot," said Notre Dame English Professor William O’Rourke.

Others do not find it that hard to use in speech.

"That was a ginormous crowd that we had at our last program here at the library," Walters said.

But regardless of how important the words are, or are not, there is still some value to bringing in new ones.

"If you see something you haven't heard before, you're also more likely to see the words around them, which you may want to pay attention to, too," O’Rourke said.

The librarian we talked to today knew 12 of the 20 words on the sample list.

Here they are:
1. agnolotti
2. Bollywood
3. chaebol
4. crunk
5. DVR
6. flex-cuff
7. ginormous
8. gray literature
9. hardscape
10. IED
11. microgreen
12. nocebo
13. perfect storm
14. RPG
15. smackdown
16. snowboardcross
17. speed dating
18. sudoku
19. telenovela
20. viewshed

Go to the websites, linked below, to find out more about the words, and how Webster’s decides what words make it into the dictionary.


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