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Where the rejected words go

You know that English is a very creative language and that new words are born every year. As they do not have an institution such as the Academia de la Lengua they rely on the good old Oxford English Dictionary to sanction the new words as solid enough to formally join the English language. The OED work started in 1150 and it was completed in 1928, in its printed edition it has 20 volumes plus 3 volumes in the Additions series.

The main change in the new millenium was a digital on line edition which appeared in 2000 and will get a facelift in 2010.

Both editions get revised regularly, this year on the 10th of June the new revised Rh volume was added alongside new entries across the alphabet. Since the OED has gone online these changes are easier to add. In the printed edition this is obviously harder and one has to wait longer for a record of not only new words but new added meanings to existing words

Lexicographers are always on the look out for new words but also members of the public write to the OED with new words. They decide what goes in the OED but it is a very important decision as once they are in the OED they remain there forever.

But what happens to the words that do not make it ?. Well today I have discovered where the rejected words go: they are stored in a vault in the Oxford University Press, dormant until they become accepted, a kind of purgatory for words.

A researcher has found out about this secret vault and the media has loved the story you can read the articles here

You can read the whole article from The Telegraph newspaper by clicking here

The Digital Newspaper

Mail online

My favourite dormant word in nonversation: a worthless conversation. I hope it makes it into the OED

If you like to have some fun with words try these games

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