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Tuesday, August 14, 2012

F-Bomb enters the dictionary

And the "earworm," coined by novelist Stephen King, makes it, too.

The Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary added the "F-bomb" and its definition to its ranks on Tuesday, according to the New Zealand Herald.

Yet, it seems it has been in common use for over two decades, or so they say. According to them, it was used for the first time in 1988, in a Newsday story about baseball player Gary Carter. Then, in the late 90's, it became widespread with Bobby Knight's heavy bombardment during a locker room shout down.

Quoted in the New Zealand Herald, Kory Stamper, associate editor at Merriam-Webster, believes its sudden popularity is because of its casual usage by politicians.

"We saw another huge spike after Dick Cheney dropped an F-bomb in the Senate in 2004," and again in 2010 when Vice President Joe Biden did the same thing in the same place," she said.

The more widely known Oxford University Press dictionary has had the 'F-bomb' lined up for a while, though Merriam-Webster seems to have beaten them to it.

Other new words to make into the new edition include 'aha moment', made famous by Oprah and 'earworm', a phrase used to describe a song you can't get out of your head which was first coined by Stephen King.

'Bucket list', 'brain camp', 'sexting' and 'man cave' were also added for the first time.

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