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A Harvest of New Words in the Oxford English Dictionary

Categories: GRE Vocabulary, SAT Vocabulary, Vocabulary Building Words, Vocabulary for Success, Vocabulary Resources |

It’s time to go out into the fields and gather in all of the new words that have been added to the English language recently – or at least a few of them. There are so many words that get created, and so many others that change in meaning, that it’s hard to keep up sometimes. However, the editors at the Oxford English Dictionary are up to the challenge, continuing a century-long tradition of keeping one main resource and reference for English vocabulary words. In the September update, they added new meanings for words like fudge and barnstorm, along with a list of dozens of words that have come into being to communicate terms and concepts that describe ways of working, of living, of speaking, and of viewing the world around us. Here are few of the words that were incorporated into the OED in September:

aquafarm / aquafarming noun / verb
With the increasing need to find ways to feed people around the world, how to get a harvest from the world’s oceans is a topic of conversation in local communities and global government organizations. Aquafarming may be the answer in some places. Also called aquaculture, this can mean several things, including (1) the practice of raising fish or mollusks in cages in the ocean; (2) using ponds or other enclosed areas to raise fish; or (3) combining traditional agriculture with fish farming, such as systems that take the waste from the fish and use it to fertilize crops, which in turn are used to feed the fish. Various forms of aquafarming have been providing food for people since at least 2500 BCE.

buzzworthy adjective
Any time something new is discovered – or something old is rediscovered – it creates “buzz.” The level of buzz is even higher these days due to Twitter, YouTube, and other social media, and anything that deserves its level of exposure and comment is described as buzzworthy.

fleishig adjective
A word based on the traditional Jewish food restrictions concerning meat and dairy, this Yiddish word has now been added to the dictionary (with its alternate spelling of fleischig) and the meaning of “containing meat.” The word milshig (milschig) was also added, with the meaning “containing dairy.” Both words are commonly used to describe what foods are and are not kosher.

ohmigosh interjection
We’ve talked about text speak before, and how abbreviations and acronyms are becoming standard English. You’ve probably seen (and used) OMG in your online conversations, but probably haven’t used it when you’re talking face to face with someone. This new word isn’t really new; the spelling omigosh is also fairly current, and both are a condensed form of the phrase “oh, my gosh!” that we’re sure you’ve said at some point!