Five possible new words for July

Jul 05, 2022
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We may be in the depths of winter, but the new words are still running hot!

In fact, our first new contender is for a source of heat you don’t want to be anywhere near. It’s gigafire: a fire that burns between 100,000 and 1 million hectares. With global warming causing increasingly extreme weather events, researchers have had to coin new terms to categorise bushfires by their destructiveness, and gigafire is one such term.

We turn from hot to cool with our next word, drip. It’s already a headword in the dictionary, obviously, but there are a few emerging slang senses that aren’t in yet. If someone has drip (or the drip) they’re stylish; drip can also refer to stylish clothes or accessories themselves; people and things can drip and they can be drip – so there’s a whole suite of new senses relating to stylishness across the most common parts of speech!

You may or may not have drip, but hopefully you don’t have a phone bone. If you’re aware of some of the seedier senses of bone, it might sound raunchy, but it’s very much not – it’s an actual bone spur that forms on the back of the skull, caused by the stooped posture associated with phone use.

Two more words to round out July. First, skin hunger, a faintly creepy term for the desire for loving or friendly physical contact with another; second, tuxedo cat, a cute term for a black cat with white markings on its chest and paws, resembling a person wearing a tuxedo.

Do you think these new words should enter the Macquarie Dictionary? Let us know!

 

drip: a stylish bearing.

gigafire: a fire that burns between 100,000 and 1 million hectares.

phone bone: a bone spur on the back of the skull caused by the posture associated with phone use.

skin hunger: desire for loving or friendly physical contact with another.

tuxedo cat: a cat which is mostly black in colour, with white markings on its chest and paws.


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2 Comments

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Valerie - July 18, 2022, 3:40 a.m.

"tuxedo cat" is the entry we need for July, the others are just sad and dispiriting - tuxedo cats are fun, not confined by rigid concepts of breed, always smartly dressed but without being lamely competitive in their attire - why encourage revoltingly conspicuous consumption like 'dripping' when the cost of basic living is such we all may be lucky to afford bread and dripping soon - as a dictionary with a major online presence it must be acknowledged that the internet is made of cats


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Barbara - July 29, 2022, 3:52 p.m.

I agree 100%. We have three tuxedo cats in our neighbourhood. It would be wonderful to make them official.


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