Magazine article The Spectator

MIN D Y O U R L A N G U A G E Eurogeddon

Magazine article The Spectator

MIN D Y O U R L A N G U A G E Eurogeddon

Article excerpt

Collins dictionaries have invited people to send in a word for inclusion in its E nglish dictionary.

' I f it's accepted, ' the publishers say, 'your word will be published on collinsdictionary. com within a few weeks, and your name will appear on the definition page where you will be recorded forever.' Forever (usually written as two words in British E nglish, except in the sense 'incessantly') is pitching it a bit strong.

E ternity is an over-confident prediction of the internet's durability, let alone that of Collins dictionaries.

I t's all nonsense of course.

They just want publicity. The people at Collins do evaluate each word submitted, considering whether it is widespread and 'how long it is likely to stay around for'.

But they already have a corpus of 4.5 billion words. No doubt they monitor internet sites run on wiki principles, such as Urban Dictionary. The chances of an unnoticed widely used word being sent in from Chorley, Horley or F awley are nil.

One submission highlighted was legbomb. This denotes an explosive display of leg, and originates from the performance of Angelina Jolie at the Oscar ceremony this year. …

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