Udayavni Special

What are some of the words of the year 2020 as per Oxford?


Team Udayavani, Nov 24, 2020, 12:11 PM IST

Oxford Languages has expanded its ‘Word of the Year’ to an entire list for 2020 titled ‘Words of an Unprecedented Year’.

Describing 2020 as “a year which cannot be neatly accommodated in one single word,” OED said that there were too many words to sum up the events of 2020

Tracking its vast corpus of more than 11 billion words found in web-based news, blogs and other text sources, its lexicographers revealed what the dictionary described as “seismic shifts in language data and precipitous frequency rises in new coinage” over the past 12 months.

Most words of the year are coronavirus-related, including coronavirus, lockdown, circuit-breaker, support bubbles, keyworkers, furlough and face masks.

The list also includes words like ‘covidiot’, ‘superspreader’ and ‘moonshot’ that have been chosen to reflect “ethos, mood or preoccupations” of 2020.

According to National Herald, the report said the word “coronavirus” dates back to the 1960s and was previously “mainly used by scientific and medical specialists.” But by April this year, it had become “one of the most frequently used nouns in the English language, exceeding even the usage of the word time.”

It said the use of the word “pandemic” has increased by more than 57,000 per cent this year.

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