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August Dictionary Comes To Terms With Fresh Twists Of The Language

Sat., Jan. 17, 1998

Gastronaut - defined as a particularly adventurous eater - may join “nosh” and “geeked” in the upcoming edition of the venerable Oxford English Dictionary.

“We’ve released a list of the new words and phrases we’re considering for the OED. The word, gastronaut, may not get into our big Oxford English Dictionary, but it could get into one of our other dictionaries,” said Helen McManners, public affairs officer at Oxford University Press in Oxford, England.

The OED, at some 20 volumes, is generally considered the definitive word in usage and definitions.

Among the considerations:

Di-mania: Public reaction in the wake of the Princess of Wales’ death.

Negaholic: Anyone addicted to negative thinking.

Girl Power: Women who are given a fair share of power in society. Inspired by the phenomenon of the Spice Girls, a British singing group.

Adultescent: Someone 35 to 45 years old who hangs onto the trappings of youth culture.

And what words are Webster’s New World Dictionary considering?

“Mezzabrow,” said Webster’s editor Mike Agnes in New York City. “This is a person who is middlebrow but in a fashionable way.”


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