Oxford Dictionaries

Articles by Oxford Dictionaries


dance scene

37 dances from the OED

Because the Oxford English Dictionary (OED) captures the breadth and variety of the English language, something that one can trace through its entries are cultural fads and crazes. With that in mind, we have picked out a sampling of some of the dances mentioned in the OED, some new, some old, some still popular today, […]

jane austen characters

Which Jane Austen leading man are you?

One of the most renowned novelists of all time, Jane Austen is known not only for her heroines, but also for the leading men who stand opposite them. From Pride and Prejudice’s Fitzwilliam Darcy to Persuasion’s Captain Wentworth, Austen’s novels are filled with great, complicated men, who sometimes struggle to articulate their emotions, and occasionally […]

“A man will turn over half a library to make one book.”  (Samuel Johnson)

johannesburg SA

WordWatch roundup: xenophobia, hustings, sabbatical, and ludic

This series investigates changes in lookups for words and their meanings across OxfordDictionaries.com. The graphs are based on website data collected over a four-week period, and the accompanying commentary explores how news and other current events have influenced these word trends and sudden peaks in interest. xenophobia, noun Following a recent outbreak of violence against foreigners […]

weird

17 weird ways to say weird

Tired of the word weird? At Oxford Dictionaries, we decided to that it was time to come up with some alternatives. Next time you want to observe how weird something is, why don’t you try ostrobogulous out for size? Or how about the over-the-top mondo bizarre? 1. Far-out Unconventional or avant-garde. This use began as […]

letter blocks

How much do you know about conlangs?

Even though the HBO television series Game of Thrones has brought conlangs – constructed languages – into the media spotlight over the past couple of years, conlangs have been around for a long time. Let’s see how much you know about the rich cultural history of conlangs!

There is no Frigate like a Book / To take us lands away / Nor any Courses like a Page / Of prancing Poetry - Emily Dickinson

dry rose

How well do you know famous last words?

The last words spoken (or written) by famous people on their deathbed have always attracted a significant amount of interest, perhaps more than any other form of quotation. This comes as no surprise since a person’s dying words can carry a certain amount of honesty and, sometimes, even a fair bit of humour. We have selected a few of […]

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