The Merriam-Webster Collegiate Dictionary added 150 new words to its pages in 2014, and we’re not quite sure what to think of them. Before we judge the new additions, though, let’s set the scene: the first-ever Merriam-Webster dictionary was issued in September of 1847 (for $6.00!), earning praise from acclaimed individuals like President Polk and General Zachary Taylor. To this day, the dictionary is “kind of a big deal,” as it continues to release new editions some century and a half after its first publication. Long story short — this big ol’ book is an institution in itself.
(Image Via Local SYR)
In April of 2014, a revised and updated version of the Merriam-Webster Collegiate Dictionary was released. Weighing 2.8 pounds, thanks to its 970 pages of definitions, the newest edition of the dictionary is comprehensive, though that’s no surprise. What is surprising is the book’s newest additions. Words like “selfie,” “gamification,” “hashtag,” “pho,” and “turducken” are now among the dictionary’s approximate 165,000 entries. Go ahead, reread that sentence. We had to also.
To be fair, some of the dictionary’s newest additions make sense to us; hashtags are certainly a force to be reckoned with, either you learn what they are (Mom, I’m talking to you), or risk submergence into oblivion. So yes, we support the inclusion of “hashtag,” and agree that such an addition is merely a testament to “the impact of online connectivity to our lives and livelihoods,” as per Merriam-Webster’s editor-at-large.
What’s our issue, then, you ask? Words like “turducken” (chicken stuffed inside duck stuffed inside turkey) and “Yooper” (the name for a native resident of the Upper Peninsula of Michigan). Sorry, but…what the what? Turducken is a disgusting concept, and why Yooper was considered a necessary entry in “America’s best known keeper of words” is equally puzzling (sorry, Michiganites).
These two Webster newbies make us a little sad inside. Are we crazy, or do you agree that the English vocabulary is stooping to new lows with these wacky words?
Do you think these words should be added to the dictionary?
(feature image via Wiki Motive)