Back to articles

  • The non-words of the year

    Dec 23, 2015 | 2 Comments

    We have all become used to the various dictionaries announcing their words of the year, but this year the selection has taken a surprising turn towards non-words of the year. To be fair it all started in 2014 when the Global Language Monitor announced that the top word for the year was the heart emoji. Read more...

  • Word of the Year 2015 COMING SOON

    Dec 10, 2015 | 0 Comments

    This year we're shaking things up! In previous years the People's Choice and the Committee's Choice winning words have been announced at the same time. But this time the Committee will announce their choice and then we'll open up the vote to the public. You can then tell us whether you agree or disa ...

  • Thingummyjig

    Dec 04, 2015 | 2 Comments

    There is a set of words that are humorous names for an object or device for which you can’t produce the correct name. Read more...

  • The new terror threat ratings

    Nov 27, 2015 | 0 Comments

    The new terror threat ratings have sparked a discussion of the meaning of the words used. Read more...

  • Wordnik: Portal to the brave new world of lexicography?

    Nov 20, 2015 | 0 Comments

    The internet as made it possible to get much closer to the spoken language, given that emails, posts, blogs and so on, are conversations conveyed in writing. It allows lexicographers to roam through this verbiage at great speed to spot the items that are new. Read more...

  • Sri Vaishnavi and Mica are the 2015 NSW Premier's Spelling Bee winners!

    Nov 12, 2015 | 0 Comments

    The State Finals of the 2015 NSW Premier’s Spelling Bee were held yesterday at the ABC Centre in Ultimo.

    The Junior winner was Sri Vaishnavi Kolluri, from North Sydney Public School with the word clairvoyant. The Senior winner was Mica Krzyzanowski, from Woollahra Public School who won with the word pastiche.


  • The 'drunken accent'

    Nov 04, 2015 | 1 Comment

    I have been talking to children at Hillston Central School in the Riverina about Australian English and the OzPic project. As an entertaining snippet about Australian English, I told them the folklore about the Australian accent. Read more...

  • The Great Australian Spelling Book

    Nov 01, 2015 | 0 Comments

    In stores November 1, 2015

    Introducing The Great Australian Spelling Book, the official companion to The Great Australian Spelling Bee, the hit TV series from Network TEN. Written by the Macquarie Dictionary editors, The Great Australian Spelling Book provides a comprehensive and fun guide to better spelling, and is perfect for parents and teachers helping children of all ages learn to spell.

    Read more or buy now.

  • By saying 'Negro', Eric Abetz has revealed the complications of taboos

    Oct 25, 2015 | 0 Comments

    Susan Butler writes for The Drum (LANGUAGE WARNING)

    The lessons about which words are taboo have not been universally imparted. So when Senator Eric Abetz said "Negro", he was probably as surprised by the reaction as some people were by his choice of words, writes Susan Butler

  • Thunderstruck by THAT word on Four Corners?

    Oct 21, 2015 | 1 Comment

    Susan Butler chats with ABC radio (LANGUAGE WARNING)

    ABC Radio's Michael Brissenden chats with Susan Butler about that word that went to air, without being bleeped out, on Four Corners earlier this week. Read more ...

  • NSW Premier's Spelling Bee Challenge

    Oct 20, 2015 | 0 Comments

    Macquarie Dictionary is a proud sponsor and the official word list supplier of the Premier's Spelling Bee.  The 2015 State Finals of the Premier's Spelling Bee will be held on Wednesday 11 November. Last year's winners were Grace Du (Junior division), who was the runner-up in the The Great Australi ...

  • What a rort!

    Oct 15, 2015 | 0 Comments

    Unparliamentary language

    I was asked to comment on the declaration by the Speaker in the Victorian Legislative Assembly that the word rort (and all its derived forms) was to be considered unparliamentary language. Read more...