Oxford Dictionaries

Articles by Oxford Dictionaries

What is your least favourite English word? With our #OneWordMap you can now let the whole world know.

#OneWordMap: mapping the world’s least favourite words

What if everybody in the world could answer the same question with a single word? It could be almost any question, so long as it could be answered with one word – revealing trends and similarities across the globe. #OneWordMap provides exactly that opportunity – and we’re launching the campaign with the question ‘what is […]

Money talks not just in English but in other languages as well. Find out in which country people 'buy the pig in the bag' and other money idioms.

Cost in translation: money idioms around the world

Money makes the world go round – every day we use it, think about it, talk about it. It is therefore no surprise that English uses it in a number of idiomatic expressions as well, but money also talks in other languages. The people over at gocompare.com looked at some money idioms from other languages recently and came up […]

While it is commonly used in psychology to describe a type of mental illness, mania can also mean ‘an obsessive enthusiasm for a particular thing’ in a broader, everyday sense.

36 words ending in –mania

Like the combining forms –phobia and –cracy, which we have discussed previously, –mania forms part of numerous English words. While it is commonly used in psychology to describe a type of mental illness, mania can also mean ‘an obsessive enthusiasm for a particular thing’ in a broader, everyday sense. But have a look at our […]

Book lovers everywhere, can you pick the odd one out in our book quiz?

Book quiz: odd one out

Every day is Book Lovers’ Day, we’d argue, and to celebrate, we’ve taken a broad look across lots of authors and genres to come up with an ‘odd one out’ quiz. In each question, three of the titles were written by one author, while the fourth was written by somebody else. Can you identify which […]

An Arnold Palmer is a refreshing, summery drink made by mixing equal parts iced tea and lemonade and named for the American professional golfer Arnold Palmer.

OED appeals: can you help us find earlier evidence of ‘Arnold Palmer’?

Can you help us? OED Appeals is a dedicated community space on the OED website where OED editors solicit help in unearthing new information about the history and usage of English. Part of the process of revising words and phrases for the OED involves searching for evidence of a word’s first recorded use in English, […]

corpus misspellings

Top ten misspelled words in our corpus

For many students of English, and some native speakers as well, English spelling can be confusing given all the idiosyncrasies and apparent inconsistencies that make up the written language. As Ian Brookes has argued in a previous blog post, the difficulties partly arise from the fact that the spellings of English words reflect their origins […]

Do our lexicographers ever feel tempted to make up words in order to win a game of Scrabble?

An OED editor answers some more of your questions

When we took to Twitter and Facebook to ask you to send us your questions about language and lexicography the last time, we received so many submissions that it wasn’t possible to answer all of them in just one blog post. Therefore, we have included more of your questions below — as well as the most recent ones […]

upstander new words

Upstander, Turtle Island, and tink: an Oxford Dictionaries update

New words added to OxfordDictionaries.com come, as usual, from a wide variety of backgrounds and areas – from contemporary discussions of gender, to politics, to contemporary slang like CBA (‘can’t be arsed’) and douche canoe (‘an obnoxious or contemptible person’). Here are some of the most notable words entering the dictionary in this update… Gender […]