There are 9 posts.
In this second blog post of the Free the Word series, OED associate editor Eleanor Maier explores Birmingham’s chosen word, which will be the subject of a poem by Liz Berry. bobowler n. a large moth. Continuing with the creepy-crawly theme, the chosen word for Birmingham is ‘bobowler’ (also spelled ‘bobhowler’) which refers to a […]more
In this first blog post of the Free the Word series, OED associate editor Eleanor Maier explores Berkshire’s chosen word, which will be the subject of a poem by Hollie McNish. cheeselog n. a woodlouse. At the heart of this year’s National Poetry Day has been the nationwide appeal for distinctive regional words and phrases. […]more
National Poetry Day 2017 takes place on the 28th of September, and for the occasion the BBC, working with the Forward Arts Foundation, will commission 12 local poets across England to each write a poem based on a distinctive local expression. The chosen expressions will be taken from words that have been suggested by listeners […]more
Language use and notions of correctness have always been central matters for large sections of British society – especially those concerned with class, status, and education. Throughout its history, the BBC played a central role in disseminating what is considered ‘proper’ pronunciation. In its early days, the BBC was even meant to not only entertain […]more
Listeners to BBC Radio 4 have a strange affection for its shipping forecast. Although it is basically just a weather forecast, the hypnotic sounds of its intoning, occurring at the same extremely precise four times every day, recalls the chanting of the monastic hours. Its lyrical qualities have been the inspiration of poets such as […]more
The BBC Radio 2 500 WORDS competition, run by the Chris Evans Breakfast Show, asks children aged 5-13 to compose an original work of fiction in no more than 500 words. For the past four years, Oxford Dictionaries for Children has collected and analysed all of the words used by young writers in the competition. […]more
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. fracas, noun Earlier this week, following a ‘fracas’ with […]more