Word Of The Year – A History
The Oxford Dictionary published their “Word Of The Year” 2016, and it is post-truth. If you want to find out why this word made the cut, check out their article.
Now that we know the “Word of 2016”, however, lets have a look at the whole tradition of “Word of the Year”. We will answer some questions you may have about it and provide you with the answers. Furthermore, we have looked a bit at the history of this sometimes infamous award and broke it down into easy to digest bits for you. And, of course, you will find a list of all “Words of the Year” from the first accolade til today.
The Word Of The Year
What Is “Word Of The Year”?
“Word of the Year” is a symbolic award given by several institutions (like the Oxford Dictionary) to words that had a special impact in the year they were chosen. Taken into account are not only single words but also expressions that were of some importance in the public sphere throughout the year in question.
When Did It Start?
In Germany, the tradition of crowning a “Wort des Jahres” started back in 1971. The first one determined for the English language, chosen by the American Dialect Society, was in 1990.
Who Announces The Word Of The Year?
For the English language, the aforementioned America’s Dialect Society officially announces the “Word of the Year” after the calendar year ended. However, several dictionaries also started publishing their very own “Word of the Year”. Such as:
- Oxford English Dictionary started in 2004
- Merriam-Webster Dictionary started in 2003
- Macquarie Dictionary started in 2006
Different from the dictionaries listed above, the official “Word of the Year” of the American Dialect Society is chosen via voting among several renowned and independent linguists.
What Are The Different Categories?
In addition to the overall “Word of the Year”, the American Dialect Society also selects words for this award in different categories. These categories vary throughout the years. Some of them include, most…
- notable hashtag
… and more.
List Of All Words Of The Year For The English Language
Here are all words that have been given this award by the four sources mentioned above. Please note that the choice for 2016 by the American Dialect Society hasn’t been made yet.
|Year||American Dialect Society||Merriam-Webster Dictionary||Oxford English Dictionary
UK vs. US
committee vs. people’s choice
|2015||Singluar they||-ism||?||captain’s call|
|2014||#blacklivesmatter||culture||vape||mansplain vs. shareplate|
|2013||because (as in because awesome, because reasons)||science||selfie||infovorce vs. onsie|
|2012||hashtag||socialism, capitalism||omnishambles vs to GIF||phantom vibration syndrom vs. First World Problem|
|2011||occupy||pragmatic||squeezed middle||burqini vs. fracking|
|2010||app||austerity||big society vs. refudiate||googleganger vs. shockumentary|
|2009||tweet||admonish||simples vs. unfriend||shovel-ready vs. tweet|
|2008||bailout||bailout||credit crunch vs. hypermiling||toxic debt vs. flashpacker|
|2007||subprime||w00t||carbon footprint vs. locavore||pod slurping vs. password fatigue|
|2006||plutoed||thruthiness||bovvered vs. carbon-neutral||muffin top|
|2005||truthiness||integrity||sudoku vs. podcast|
|2004||red||state, blue state, purple state||blog||chav|
|2002||weapons of mass destruction (WMD)|
|1998||e- (as in e-mail, e-commerce)|
|1995||web, to newt|
|1991||mother of all|
You always do the right thing. God Bless you.