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popular search terms 2014

Looking for love… and other popular search terms from 2014 so far

If you’re reading this, you almost certainly use Oxford Dictionaries Online, and if you use Oxford Dictionaries Online, you’ve probably used the search box – and have you ever wondered which words receive the highest number of search requests?

It’s a question we’re often asked, and the results are interesting and sometimes amusing. This interactive diagram shows the 75 most popular search terms for the past quarter (January-March 2014). We’ve divided them into different parts of speech, as the colour-coding key shows (noun, verb, adjective, and so forth). In cases where words can be used in more than one part of speech (like appeal and experience), we have colour-coded them under their most popular use. If any of the words take your fancy, one click will take you through to the dictionary entry in question.

If you hover over a ‘bubble’, it will bring up text showing the ranking of the word in question. The size of each bubble also indicates its popularity – so, for instance, you can see just by looking at the diagram that many of our romantic dictionary users have been searching for love (which comes in at second place).

As for number one? Well, that’s Oxford Dictionaries 2013 Word of the Year, still going strong in the first quarter of 2014: selfie.


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