New Dictionary Words You Should Know

Language is fluid—it’s always moving and changing!

New events and situations occur all the time, and sometimes there just isn’t the right word to describe or explain them. When that happens, new vocabulary is created, compound words (two words used together) are formed, and existing words take on new meanings.

If enough people agree on the meaning of a word, it gains popularity and starts to be used regularly. At that point, it will be identified by dictionary editors—people who read actively and notice changes in a language. It’s their job to conduct research and decide which new words or meanings will be included in the next edition of the dictionary. 

Take a look at some of the words that have been accepted into the Oxford English Dictionary over the past year. You might find that certain words are familiar while others are completely new to you!

1. Awfy

→ (adjective) Terrible; awful

We couldn’t even finish watching the movie. It was just awfy! 

2. Awesomesauce

→ (adjective) Very good; excellent

I love my new online class! The instructor is awesomesauce!

3. Bad seed

→ (noun) An evil person who can’t be changed 

Some people support that president, but I think he’s just a bad seed.

4. Chickeny

→ (adjective) Resembling or flavoured like chicken

I tried frog legs at the French restaurant. They tasted kind of chickeny.

5. Chillax 

→ (verb) To calm down and relax

I don’t feel like doing much tonight. Can we just stay home and chillax?

6. Climate emergency

→ (noun) An urgent environmental or climate problem which needs to be solved.

Many politicians don’t talk enough about Earth’s climate emergency. We need to do something to save the planet! 

7. E-waste

→ (noun) Discarded electronic equipment, such as mobile phones and computers

Do you ever think about all the e-waste that’s created when a new iPhone is released and everybody throws out their old one?

8. Easy-breezy

→ (adjective) Easy, simple

I don’t like to cook complicated meals. I prefer easy-breezy dishes like salads.

9. Next tomorrow

→ (noun) The day after tomorrow

I’m busy today and tomorrow, but I’d love to see you next tomorrow!

10. Nomophobia 

→ (noun) Nervousness about not having a mobile phone available

We’re on a camping trip. Why do you need your phone? Do you have nomophobia?

11. Stan

→ (noun) A person who likes and admires someone or something in an extremely enthusiastic (sometimes obsessive) way.

I used to think it would be fun to be a famous singer, but I actually don’t think I would like the attention of all the crazy stans!

12. Weak sauce 

→ (adjective) Something that is inferior; something disappointing or low-quality 

I was really looking forward to that new book with the great reviews but it was weak sauce! I was so bored.

What do you think?

The above words are just a few of the interesting and descriptive additions to the English language. Which ones do you like?

Andrea is a Gabby Academy coach and education technolgy writer based in Vancouver, Canada.