New English Words in 21st Century

Those who can speak English know perfectly well that the English of Dickens or Thackeray is quite different from the English of feature films that have been produced this century and for the language of blogs it is even more so. It's no surprise: new words appear in English as society develops, and it's this continuous renewal that shows that English is alive.

How Changes in Vocabulary Affect Learning

For anyone who is unfamiliar with linguistics, this is probably hard to believe that the famous Oxford English Dictionary — the ultimate historical dictionary of English edited by the scholars of the famous Oxford University — is updated quarterly!

No surprise that even the best textbooks are just unable to keep up with such living in the fast lane, no matter how frequently they are updated to match with current linguistic trends. To say the least, learning English with a native speaker and continued language communication is the only solution for a learner.

By the way, you can find this format of education for your children and it's not as difficult as it may seem, for example, CIS International School with campuses in Moscow, St. Petersburg, and Tashkent offers classes with tutors and teachers from Britain, and you can call the administration and also book a tour across the campuses to learn about the educational programs it offered. Full immersion in the language environment ensures you flawless modern English!

Where Do New Words in Modern English Come From?

Neologisms are an adequate response to scientific and multiple technology innovations, which builda constant need for special terms. Take the total computerisation and digitalisation of the last few decades — if you look closer into it, it uses terminology in English, and programming is directly related to English. Suffice to say that the globally knownthree letters www stand for World Wide Web.

We can talk on the emergence of new words in English, as well as of taking extra meanings by old words. Example:

  • webinar (web + seminar) means presentation, conference, or other real-time online activity;
  • unfriend means remove from the friend list in a social media;
  • сookies — originally, it was just biscuits, but now also means the file that contains personal data and settings of a user on a web site;
  • bug means an insect but the meaning has shifted to indicate a software error or internal disruption.

Terminology is changing in all areas of human activity, including art, fashion, and commerce. However, the main source of neologisms is considered to be colloquial speech. While we frequently simplify and substitute words in a funny way in our everyday speech, we tend to put grammar into the background — that way the words and expressions (or their new meanings) with some degree of distinctiveness, known as slang, evolve and further take root in the language.

Generally, colloquials are used by some groups of people (youthspeak, occupational jargon, and etc.) but these words and expressions often grow into general language and then into literary language, renewing and enriching it.

Finally, borrowing from other languages was never revoked, and the pervasive Anglicisms are fully compensated by foreign words, including Russian.

Meet the Newest Words in English

Experts confirm that the language of the British people has changed enormously over the last thousand years. English is still changing right before the eyes of our contemporaries and they need to describe each individual neologism. This, in fact, is what the Oxford Dictionary does. Following are a view new words deciphered by linguists and were officially approved at the end of 2020:

  • adorkable (from adjective adorable + noun dork) describes someone who or something that is charmingly or appealingly awkward;
  • follicly challenged describes a person who is growing bald (here, just like as in the similar expressions, the word challenged is used instead of a somewhat biased phrase 'having problems with something');
  • kompromat (borrowed from Russian) describes a potentially harmful for reputation selection of compromising documented details or a package of documents;
  • to adult (from noun adult, adulting) means to grow up, behave with more responsibility, or try to be clever;
  • bottle episode describes a cheap (fewer settings, special effects, or actors) TV series episode;
  • overshare (over- + share) means to share information (usually on social media) too freely (overwhelmingly detailed or personal).

The makers of Oxford English Dictionary always remember to choose a word of the year that identifies key trends or events that arouse public opinions. In 2021, the podium was taken by the pronoun vax — the collective reduced form of the noun vaccination, the adjective vaccinated, and the verb to vaccinate that clearly reflected our live experience in the last year.

Finally, a small selection of curious new English words from 2022 that even omnipotent Google Translate can't cope with.

  • digital nomad means a worker who performs their job online and has not to be based in a certain location;
  • makerspace means a workshop providing workplaces for individual developers of small projects or for teams to build or invent something;
  • аmirit replaces the question "Am I right?" in informal writing;
  • сopypasta means the text blocks that are copied and widely shared in a form of a meme, cultural or politic message;
  • FTW is the abbreviated phrase 'for the win' that is used to express support/encouragement (for example, on on-line forums);
  • hard pass means a non-discussable denial;
  • deplatform means to terminate the service of a registered user or to delete an account and/or the content thereof.

Knowing new English words is fashionable and prestigious. Make sure you keep your finger on the pulse!

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