Word Trends & Stories

  1. What The F*** Is Whisky Tango Foxtrot And Other Army Lingo

    Given the size and manpower of the US Army, it’s no surprise that its lingo has gradually invaded everyday conversation. Not many of us keep a Purple Heart framed on our desk, though (i.e., we have no idea what these words and phrases mean even though we hear them all the time). Here’s the best explanations we can come up with as to what these military phrases …

  2. Do You Cringe At The Sound Of These Words?

  3. Which Generation Are You From?

  4. Pardon And Other Trending Words

    From the president’s Twitter account to a horse with an unusual name, searches for the meaning of words took folks into some unusual areas of Dictionary.com this week. Pardon President Donald Trump’s assertion that he can pardon himself didn’t just have the Twitterverse talking. It also sent searches for the meaning of pardon up 328% this week. We can’t say whether or not a president …

  5. The United States of Diversity: Borders

    Dictionary.com’s United States of Diversity by Taneesh Khera In April, 2018 I traveled to India for a college friend’s wedding. When I came back, I read part of this essay to two friends, and we began to discuss borders and what they’ve become today. That conversation was inspiration for this episode, so grab a cushion and get comfortable for the United States of Diversity: Borders. …

  6. Last Month in Pop Language: “This Is America” And Other May #1’s

    by Molly Rosen Marriner It’s another installment of Last Month in Pop Language, a column where the most popular (statistically) song, book, and film of the month will have their words analyzed in hopes of drawing a conclusion about language’s current usage—and future. At the end of each monthly column, we’ll draw a conclusion: Was last month’s pop language masterly, malevolent, or merely meh? Film: Avengers: Infinity War Avengers: …

  7. Everyday Words With Completely Different Meanings In Rap

  8. Racist And Other Trending Words This Week

    From a Twitter meltdown by Roseanne Barr to a word dropped on Westworld, Hollywood had a major impact on the Dictionary.com trending word list this week. Racist, abhorrent, and repugnant A series of tweets by Roseanne Barr hit the news cycle this week, and they also helped boost a number of searches on Dictionary.com. Barr, star of the eponymous show Roseanne, tweeted a racist comment …

  9. Made-Up Words: Twitter’s Favorite Family Malapropisms

    Just about every family has a word that makes sense only to them. Said by children, weird uncles, or parents in the heat of the moment, these words were coined when someone goofed … and yet somehow for these families they stuck. There’s even an official term for this phenomenon: malapropism, a noun that means “an act or habit of misusing words ridiculously, especially by …

  10. English Words From The Pharaohs

    Most people recognize Ancient Greek and Latin as the primary donors to the English language. However, some of the most ancient words in English actually trace back to Ancient Egypt.  Distinct from the contemporary Egyptian Arabic spoken today, Ancient Egyptian is a unique Afro-Asiatic language that doesn’t really share similarities with other languages in the family (like Arabic, Hebrew, or Berber). Its 5,000 year-old history generally …

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