12 Sep
oxford dictionary update oxford dictionary update

It's Official: Twerking is a Word

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Just as Miley Cyrus was teaching the adult population what the word "twerking" meant, the Oxford Dictionary announced the word had officially made it onto its online edition. Twerk, according to the official definition, means to "dance to popular music in a sexually provocative manner..." While the word has been recently attributed to Miley Cyrus, it actually has been a part of hip hop culture since the 1990s, according to Oxford. The dictionary theorizes that the word likely was created as a variation of the word "work."

A couple of other words entered the dictionary this year, including selfie--a term that refers to the self-portraits people snap to post on social media sites--and phablet--a term that addresses the over-sized smartphones that are just a few inches away from being tablet devices. In a blog post, Oxford admitted the technology is a large part of the evolution of our language, and this year's entries support that.

Other technology-influenced words that have made their way into the dictionary include bitcoin, a digital currency, and an additional meaning of the word unlike, which now extends to the process of removing a "like" from a person's online profile or posting. For a full list of this year's additions, check out the Oxford Dictionaries quarterly update.

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Read 3052 times Last modified on Thursday, 12 September 2013 04:05
Stephanie Faris

Stephanie is a freelance writer and novelist whose work has appeared on,, the Intuit Small Business Blog, and many others. She is the Simon & Schuster author of 8 children's books, including the Piper Morgan chapter book series, 25 Roses, and 30 Days of No Gossip.

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