The word with the most meanings in English is the verb 'set', with 430 senses listed in the Second Edition of the Oxford English Dictionary, published in 1989. The word commands the longest entry in the dictionary at 60,000 words, or 326,000 characters. guinnessworldrecords.com/…
Until the mid-1990s, jew (as a verb meaning to swindle) was an acceptable Scrabble word. It took a large letter writing campaign to get Milton Bradley to finally agree to change their dictionary. tabletmag.com/sections/ne…
The bulk of quotations in the Oxford English Dictionary were contributed by a murderer who severed his own penis, using a knife he had employed in his work on the dictionary. mentalfloss.com/article/5…
A man from New Zealand memorized every french word in the french scrabble dictionary and won the French Scrabble Championship. He still doesn't speak any french. npr.org/sections/thetwo-w…
The town of Zzyzx in California was named by a quack doctor to purposely be the last listing in any dictionary or atlas roadsideamerica.com/story…
60% of all vocabulary in the modern Japanese dictionary are chinese loanwords en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sin…
New Oxford American Dictionary added a fake word, esquivalience, to track plagiarism. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New…
It took Noah Webster a total of 28 years to complete his dictionary webstersdictionary1828.co…
During the making of her first english album, Shakira had to use an english-spanish dictionary to be able to write songs because she could not speak the language yet en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lau…
The dictionary isn't as much an instruction guide to the English language, as it is a record of how people are using it. Words aren't added because they're OK to use, but because a lot of people have been using them. languages.oup.com/our-sto…
Today I learned of William Chester Minor; one of the largest contributors to the Oxford English Dictionary who murdered a man at point-blank and was "not guilty by reason of insanity". He was diagnosed with schizophrenia and spent the next 38 years in a psychiatric hospital up until he died at age 85. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wil…
[] William Chester Minor cut off his penis and contributed a lot to the Oxford English Dictionary. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wil…
The Oxford English Dictionary wouldn't have been what it is today if not for an insane American Civil War surgeon who cut his penis off. He contributed thousands of quotations and word entries by writing from an asylum. hindustantimes.com/hollyw…
In 1934, the word β€œdord” was mistakenly added to the dictionary as a new scientific term for density. This was caused by an employee misinterpreting a note reading β€œD or d, cont./density”, and the mistake was not fixed until 1939. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dor…
The word that has the most definitions in the English language is "set" with 430 in total. The word "run" is expected to have 645 individual meanings in the next Oxford English Dictionary in 2037. insider.com/words-with-th…
Noah Webster thought "Beauty" should be pronounced "Booty" (From his 1828 dictionary and Bill Bryson's The Mother Tongue) webstersdictionary1828.co…
The phrase "dung-wet" (meaning very wet) was considered "obsolete" by the Oxford English Dictionary in the 1st edition (1897) but the phrase was unexpectedly found on Twitter, having survived to present day by speakers of Carribean English. public.oed.com/blog/dung-…
A High Court judge had to utilize the Urban Dictionary to rule a copyright case, with judges puzzling over phrases such as β€œshizzle my nizzle” in court. news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/enter…
A "sporange" is a rare alternative form of sporangium, a botanical term for part of a fern. Found in the 20-Volume Oxford English Dictionary, it is the only perfect rhyme for the word "orange." lexico.com/explore/are-th…
"Cheese-eating surrender monkeys" is an insult used to refer to French people. It first appeared in the Simpsons (1995) when Willy says "Bonjoooouuurrr, ya cheese-eatin' surrender monkeys" to a French class. The term has since entered two Oxford Quotation Dictionaries. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Che…
The Oxford English Dictionary has included the informal use of the word "literally" in its official definition since 2011, and that use of the word "literally" to mean "figuratively" has been documented as far back as 250 years. telegraph.co.uk/education…
Cartographers protect their intellectual property by slipping fake streets, or even entire towns, into their maps. If the street/town shows up on another map, they know it was stolen. Dictionary writers have been known to do the same thing with fake words. atlasobscura.com/articles…
In 2018, the word 'embiggen' from The Simpsons was added to the Oxford English Dictionary. It has been used in research papers on String Theory. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lis…
Thesaurus Linguae Latinae, a dictionary of Latin founded on historical principles. Founded in 1894, it was thought it would take up to 20 years to complete. The work is still ongoing, and is now expected to be completed around the year 2050. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The…
The made up word from a 1996 Simpsons episode "embiggen" was officially added to the Merriam Webster Dictionary in early March of 2018. wcyy.com/simpsons-diction…
38 elders helped a linguist compile a dictionary of the Klallam language and one contributed 12,000 words to the dictionary over the years. When it was released, KIallam people from all over turned out for the dictionary signing ceremony and some cradled the book like a baby seattletimes.com/seattle-…
According to the Oxford Dictionary, the word β€œkinda” has been around since the early 20th century. It calls β€œwhatcha” a β€œnonstandard contraction.” β€œHafta,” on the other hand, is called β€œinformal”, while "lemme" is a "contraction" quickanddirtytips.com/edu…
New Zealander Nigel Richards memorised the French dictionary and won a French Scrabble competition. He does not speak French at all. cbc.ca/news/trending/man-…
The 2015 French Scrabble champion spoke no french, and instead memorized the French Scrabble dictionary 9 weeks before the tournament. telegraph.co.uk/news/worl…
The Oxford English Dictionary was not only first completed in 1928, but an early volunteer contributor was a criminally insane American doctor. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oxf…
The name of the eponymous character "STAN" from Eminem's biggest hit song of the same name ,has given rise to a slang term online which refers to overzealous, maniacal, overly obsessed fans of a celebrity or personality; the term has since been included in the Oxford English Dictionary. vulture.com/2017/06/stan-…
The New Oxford American Dictionary made up the fake word "esquivalience" and inserted it into their dictionary. This false entry was included to expose any people who might copy Oxford's content and use it in their own work. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New…
Yale graduate William Chester Minor, who became one of the largest contributors for the compiling of the Oxford English Dictionary by providing usages of words from his antiquated book collection, was a clinically insane murderer who cut off his own penis. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wil…
The first edition of the Oxford English dictionary took 49 years to write. It took 5 years just to reach the word 'ant'. languages.oup.com/our-sto…
Today I learned of the Grelling-Nelson Paradox, which states that since words can be either autological (apply to themselves -> e.g. the word noun is a noun) or heterological (the opposite-> the word long is not long), the word 'heterological' is the only word in the entire dictionary that is neither. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gre…
"nucular" is such a common mispronunciation of the word "nuclear" that several dictionaries mention it, although none so far list it as correct. In popular culture, the "nucular" pronunciation has often been used to signify inferiority, low intellect or foolishness. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuc…
Through many objections Merriam-Webster added the word 'McJob' to their dictionary (2003), defining it as "a low-paying, low-prestige dead-end job that requires few skills and offers very little chance of intracompany advancement". en.wikipedia.org/wiki/McJ…
After the movie Avatar (2009) where the Pandoran aliens speak in their native tongue - Na'vi, a full English to Na'vi dictionary was created. pandorapedia.com/dictiona…
Americans used to say "alumin-ium" like the British, but the chemist who named the element couldn't make up his mind on how to spell it. This led to Webster's Dictionary printing it as "alumin-um", eventually causing American chemists to adopt the 'incorrect' spelling. worldwidewords.org/articl…
J.R.R. Tolkien worked for the Oxford English Dictionary and is credited with having worked on a number of words starting with the letter W, including walrus. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/J._…
A man memorized the French dictionary to win the French Scrabble Championship, he does not speak French people.com/article/new-ze…
Mountweazels are fictitious words added to reference works (like dictionaries or encyclopedias) to act as copyright traps to reveal subsequent plagiarism or copyright infringement. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fic…
The word "set" has the most accepted alternate meanings in the English language at 430 (according to the 1989 Oxford English Dictionary). guinnessworldrecords.com/…
The editors of Webster's Dictionary see dictionaries as keeping record of social usage of words rather than defining what a would *should* mean. youtu.be/uLgn3geod9Q?t=4m…
The dots in the middle of words defined in the dictionary are to indicate where they should be hyphenated if you have to drop a line youtube.com/watch?v=uLgn3…
With at least 645 different meanings in the Oxford English Dictionary, the word 'Run' currently holds the record for having the most meanings for a word in the English language nytimes.com/2011/05/29/op…
The literary works of Dostoevsky, Tolstoy, and Chekhov were all introduced to the English-language world by one woman, who didn't start learning Russian until she was 29, and learned via a dictionary and grammar book. She ultimately translated over 70 volumes. timeline.com/constance-ga…
A California school district banned dictionaries after a student who was searching for the word "orangutan" came across the definition for "oral sex." They pulled dictionaries from the school for having "age inappropriate" words. foxnews.com/us/2010/01/27…
IBM Had To Delete 'Urban Dictionary' Data from The Watson Super Computer System Because The Machine Started Cursing. theatlantic.com/technolog…
'embiggen' and 'cromulent' - two words invented on The Simpsons - have since been used in academic journals and added to the dictionary, respectively en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lis…
The the Oxford English Dictionary credits Shakespeare with creating over 2000 new words in the English language en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sha…
An archaic term for a number raised to the eighth power is "zenzizenzizenzic". A number squared was "zenzic", a square of a square was "zenzizenzic", and a square of a square of a square was "zenzizenzizenzic". It also holds a record as having the most Z's in the Oxford English Dictionary. en.wikipedia.com/wiki/Zen…
Websters Dictionary accidentally had a word that didn’t exist in it for five years – β€œDord”. snopes.com/fact-check/gho…
The word 'cactuses' is the English plural to cactus and 'cacti' is the Latin plural. Dictionaries list both and neither are right or wrong. grammarist.com/usage/cact…
To prepare IBM's Watson for Jeopardy, researchers inputted the entirety of Urban Dictionary. Unfortunately, this had the side effect of Watson adopting profanity. In one test, it even used the word "bullshit" to respond to a researcher's query. theatlantic.com/technolog…
Urban Dictionary has been used in many court cases to define slang terms that are not found in dictionaries and that some states' DMVs refer to it to determine if certain license plates are appropriate or not en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Urb…
'expresso' is considered an acceptable variant of 'espresso' by the Oxford English Dictionary. slate.com/blogs/lexicon_v…
The word with the most meanings in English is the verb 'set', with 430 senses listed in the Second Edition of the Oxford English Dictionary, published in 1989. The word commands the longest entry in the dictionary at 60,000 words, or 326,000 characters. guinnessworldrecords.com/…
, a woman in Nebraska tried to sue all gay people. Her appeal had no legal references, but quoted Webster's Dictionary and the Bible. time.com/3848666/nebraska…
William Chester Minor was the most prolific contributor to the enormous task of creating the Oxford English Dictionary. He did this over the course of years while being committed in an insane asylum after being found not guilty by insanity for murder. mentalfloss.com/article/5…
The term checkmate is, according to the Barnhart Etymological Dictionary, an alteration of the Persian phrase "shāh māt" (Ψ΄Ψ§Ω‡ Ω…Ψ§Ψͺ) which means, literally, "the King is helpless" en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Che…
It took 49 years to publish the first authoritative English dictionary. It took five years to publish the first part, A to Ant. todayinliterature.com/sto…
81-year-old Marie Wilcox is the last fluent speaker of the Wukchumni language. In an attempt to revive the dying language she spent 7 years writing and recording a Wukchumni dictionary. niume.com/pages/post/inde…
A German missionary, Ferdinand Kittel is remembered for compiling the first Kannada-to-English dictionary in 1894 with 70k words. He is today almost forgotten in Germany, but widely recognised in Indian state of Karnataka. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fer…
The original Sony Walkman, released in 1979, was called the "Soundabout" in the United States, "Freestyle" in Australia and Sweden, and "Stowaway" in the UK. In 1980, Sony started to use the name "Walkman" worldwide. In 1986, the word "Walkman" entered the Oxford English Dictionary. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wal…
Qalassirsuaq, a Greenlandic Inuit, helped search for John Franklin's lost Arctic expedition, came to Britain in 1851, studied at a missionary college, worked as a tailor, and helped compile an Inuit/English dictionary. collections.rmg.co.uk/col…
As late as 1755,Samuel Johnson’ dictionary defined lunch/luncheon as "as much food as one’s hand can hold," but not as a specific meal. ediblegeography.com/lunch…
Noah Webster had to learn 28 languages and mortgage his home to finish his dictionary. jsomers.net/blog/dictiona…
Scientists had to purge Urban Dictionary's data from IBM's Watson's memory because it learned to swear. ibtimes.com/ibms-watson-g…
In 1884, halfway through the 10 year plan to produce an up to date English dictionary, the team had only reached the word 'Ant' The final volume was published 49 years after they started. public.oed.com/history-of…
The Japanese call their currency "en". The reason it's "yen" in English is because early Japanese-English dictionary compliers didn't know that the pronunciation had changed. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jap…
During the campaign of 1920, President Warren G. Harding was accused of making up a word: "normalcy." When asked if he instead meant "normality," Harding responded "I have looked for 'normality' in my dictionary and I do not find it there. 'Normalcy', however, I did find, and it is a good word." en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ret…
Nickelodeon initially censored "blowhole" on The Adventures of Pete and Pete, which was Little Pete's favorite epithet. The creators had to read the dictionary definition (a muscular flap on a sea mammal) to standards and practices before they allowed it to be used on the air. huffingtonpost.com/2012/0…
XML, co-created by Tim Bray, was inspired by his 1986 job interview at the New Oxford English Dictionary Project en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oxf…
It is a common tactic in Scrabble to use words NOT in the dictionary, which is a legal move as long as the other player doesn't call you out merriam-webster.com/top-t…
Dictionary.com submitted "IRONIC" as the most commonly misused word hotword.dictionary.com/ir…
Chinese has so many characters that even China’s standard dictionary once forgot to include 30 already used in its preface en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chi…
The word "McJob" was added to the Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary in 2003, defined as "a low-paying job that requires little skill and provides little opportunity for advancement". en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/M…
The longest palindromic word included in the Oxford English Dictionary is tattarrattat, meaning a knock at the door. It was coined by James Joyce in "Ulysses." en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pal…
Oxford dictionary inserted a fictitious word β€œEsquivalience” in order to protect copyright of the publication. The fake entry was included in dictionary.com. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Esq…
A New Zealand man memorized the French dictionary to compete in a French Scrabble tournament. He won the tournament despite not speaking any french. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nig…
J.R.R. Tolkien created the words "dwarvish" and "dwarves", countering the spelling at the time of the books publication which was "dwarfish" and "dwarfs", and many dictionaries now consider this the proper way to spell the words. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/J._…
New Zealander Nigel Richards memorized the French Scrabble dictionary in just 9 weeks and won the French-language Scrabble World Championship despite not knowing the language. bbc.com/news/world-europe…
English writer Samuel Johnson was known to pamper his pets so much, he purchased oysters for Hodge himself, his beloved cat. A statue of Hodge sits today outside Johnson's former London home, perched on top of a dictionary, next to some empty oyster shells, inscribed β€œA very fine cat indeed.” en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hod…
When the band β€œCommodores” were coming up with a name, on of the band members randomly chose a word from the dictionary. They were then relieved when they weren’t β€œCommodes” that was just above it on the page. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Com…
Some DMVs use Urban Dictionary to determine if license plates are appropriate or not. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Urb…
In 1922 in Guam, USA Governor Althouse "noted that 'few school children could speak English with any degree of efficiency' and Chamorro remained the predominant language in Chamorro homes." So the US Navy Chamorro-English dictionaries, "printed at Navy expense" in 1918,were collected and burned. guampedia.com/us-naval-er…
Oxford Dictionaries Word of The Year for 2015 was the "face with tears of joy" Emoji (πŸ˜‚) time.com/4114886/oxford-w…
In 1934 a Chemistry editor submitted the symbol of density (d or D) to Webster's dictionary, it was misread and put into the dictionary as dord. This false word remained for 13 years. youtu.be/nb0YoRMXIY0
Today I learned of Elias LΓΆnnrot, who made the first Swedish-Finnish dictionary. The result comprised over 200 000 words, and many of the Finnish translations were invented by LΓΆnnrot himself. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eli…
The Hopi Cultural Preservation Office restricted the sale of the Hopi language dictionary to only Hopi individuals. Resale of the Hopi Dictionary is unauthorized and prohibited www8.nau.edu/hcpo-p/Lavay…
From a dictionary why the ancient Greek civilization of Sparta had no walls:"'the Spartan king Agesilaus simply pointed to his fellow citizens, armed to the teeth, the most formidable soldiers in Greece: 'Here are the walls of the Spartans.'" ahdictionary.com/word/sea…
'cunted', 'cunting', 'cuntish' and 'cunty' were all added to the Oxford English Dictionary in 2014. public.oed.com/the-oed-to…
Five years into their ten-year plan, editors of the original Oxford English Dictionary had only reached the word 'ant' public.oed.com/history-of…
The words **frugal, eyeball, pandemonium, yahoo, chortle, nymphet, quark** and **nerd** were invented by writers in their literary works. All of them are in English dictionaries. comoseteocurrio.com/news
The first use of the term "Flat-Earther" recorded by the Oxford English Dictionary is in 1934 in a British weekly magazine called Punch: "Without being a bigoted flat-earther, [Mercator] perceived the nuisance ... of fiddling about with globes ... in order to discover the South Seas." wikipedia.org/wiki/Flat_E…
Malcolm X copied every entry in the dictionary and read it out loud to become a better reader and writer. infed.org/thinkers/malcol…
The OED included a trap, made up word, "Esquivalience" which it defined to mean "the willful avoidance of one's official responsibilities" as a copyright infringement trap which caught both Dictionary.com and Google Dictionary. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New…
Madlad James Hardy Vaux was banished to Australia, then to Newcastle for impropriety (using hip new words) by the Australian governor. While imprisoned, he wrote, dedicated, and sent a dictionary of hip new words for the governor in hopes he would "find it useful in [his] magisterial capacity". gutenberg.net.au/ebooks06…
The word with the most meanings in English is the verb 'set', with 430 senses listed in the Second Edition of the Oxford English Dictionary, published in 1989. The word commands the longest entry in the dictionary at 60,000 words, or 326,000 characters. thespruce.com/which-word-…

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