Meh, cisgender, jeggings, and other new words added to the Oxford English Dictionary


Also: Photobomb, crowdfund, totes, sext, and nearly 500 more.

From the OED's "New words notes June 2015":

English has expanded its vocabulary in recent decades to reflect changes in the way that people discuss gender, race, and other aspects of personal identity and social classifications. The word cisgender, designating a person whose sense of personal identity corresponds to the sex and gender assigned to him or her at birth (in contrast with transgender), arose in the late 1990s. The prefix cis- derives from Latin, meaning ‘on this side of’, and often forms words in contrast to trans, especially with reference to geographic features (cisalpine/transalpine, cisatlantic/transatlantic, etc.).

This update sees yet another term added to the ever-proliferating vocabulary of specialized diets: freegan, derived from a blend of free and vegan, refers to ‘a person who eats discarded food, typically collected from the refuse of shops or restaurants, for ethical or ecological reasons’; it is also used as an adjective with reference to that practice.

The blasé interjection meh, expressing indifference or a lack of enthusiasm, was probably popularized by the U.S. cartoon series the Simpsons (a powerful influence on the vocabulary of contemporary English), but it was in use online by 1992—two years before it was first uttered on the programme...

Today the affinity for abbreviation in online communication is often decried, but in the late 19th century it was telegraphy that served as the catalyst for linguistic shortenings. SCOTUS, an acronym for ‘Supreme Court of the United States’, had emerged by 1879 as a telegraphic abbreviation. It was used by newswires into the 20th century, but has entered common usage only recently. POTUS (‘President of the United States’), is more widely known (and was already entered in the OED); it too originated as a telegraphic abbreviation, but apparently slightly later (OED’s first citation is from 1895). In contrast, FLOTUS (First Lady of the United States) was never used as a telegraphic abbreviation; it was apparently first used with reference to Nancy Reagan, in the early 1980s.

New words list June 2015 (OED)

"New words notes June 2015" (OED)

"Oxford Dictionary Adds ‘Fo’ Shizzle,’ ‘Masshole’ and ‘Hot Mess’" (Time)