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Bucket List, Gastropub, Earworm, Mash-up Among Merriam-Webster's New Words for 2012

Merriam Webster Collegiate Dictionary 2012Merriam-Webster has released its list of new words being added to the 2012 update of Merriam Webster's Collegiate Dictionary. Words from cutting-edge science (copernicium, a new chemical element) and pop culture (man cave) and words elevated by foodies (gastropub) are among the latest addition.

Merriam-Webster Editor at Large Peter Sokolowsk, says, "Some of the new words this year provide colorful images. Terms like 'man cave,' 'underwater' (when used to describe mortgages), 'earworm,' and 'bucket list' paint vivid pictures in your mind. They show that English-speakers can be very creative as they describe the world around them."

Here a few more of the newly added words:
  • Aha moment: a moment of sudden realization, inspiration, insight, recognition, or comprehension
  • Bucket list: a list of things that one has not done before but wants to do before dying
  • Cloud computing: the practice of storing regularly used computer data on multiple servers that can be accessed through the Internet
  • Game changer: a newly introduced element or factor that changes an existing situation or activity in a significant way
  • Gassed: a slang word meaning drained of energy
  • Systemic risk: he risk that the failure of one financial institution (as a bank) could cause other interconnected institutions to fail and harm the economy as a whole
A video about the new words uses Carly Rae Jepsen's "Call Me Maybe" as an example of a song that is an earworm, which is defined as "a song or melody that keeps repeating in one's mind." Take a look:

Photo: Merriam-Webster Inc.

Posted on August 15, 2012

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