New English Words Quiz – Winter 2016

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New English Words Quiz – Winter 2016

The Oxford English Dictionary is the unrivalled reference to the meaning, history and pronunciation of the English language. It defines over half a million words, and its ten volumes took 50 years to compile.

These days, the OED publishes quarterly updates to the online edition. In the December 2016 update, they added the words Grexit and Brexit, whose sudden and widespread adoption has been little short of a lexicological phenomenon. On being tasked with writing the precise definition, one of the OED compilers joked in a blog that ‘Brexit means Brexit’.

As well as the above, many other new words were added to the dictionary. These included some surfing terms, as well as a refresh of words beginning with ‘BRU’ and ‘HACK’. How many of the new words can you identify? I've listed 20 added in December 2016, and have given four possible definitions for each — can you spot the correct one?

You'll find a link to the answers at the foot of the page, but no peeking until you've guessed them all!

1. bralette

a) 360-degree flip

b) needle

c) unsupportive bra

d) wrist armour

2. browzy

a) abusive

b) red-faced

c) studious

d) tired

3. brubru

a) African bird

b) fashionista

c) Irn Bru

d) Sri Lankan tea

4. bruck

a) badger

b) brick

c) Lakeland bridge

d) Orcadian litter

5. bruery

a) distrust

b) East Anglian heathland

c) home-brew pub

d) Moroccan shrub

6. bruja

a) commotion

b) demijohn

c) Indian fish

d) Spanish witch

7. brulé

a) cycling event

b) dance

c) forest clearing

d) innuendo

8. ekphrastic

a) artistically descriptive

b) logically contradictory

c) scholarly

d) telling half-truths

9. glam-ma

a) Chinese doctor

b) glamorous grandmother

c) logical proposition

d) noodle dish

10. gobo

a) culinary root

b) government bond

c) shabby chic

d) television set

11. grom

a) computer memory chip

b) sex offender

c) surveyor's measuring-rod

d) young surfer

12. gub

a) to confess

b) to cry

c) to defeat

d) to die

13. hackbut of crochet

a) firearm

b) fish

c) knitting needle

d) musical instrument

14. hackit

a) angry

b) exhausted

c) small

d) ugly

15. hackleback

a) chair

b) chesty cough

c) crane

d) sturgeon

16. livity

a) balance

b) insolence

c) leukemia drug activity measurement

d) Rastafarian philosophy

17. macking

a) foul-smelling

b) impressive

c) mobile phone tracking

d) temporary roofing

18. sensi

a) cannabis

b) nerve cell

c) sensible

d) viral video

19. shaka

a) goalkeeper

b) hand gesture, in which the thumb and little finger are extended outward from a closed fist

c) Maori war dance

d) West African traditional medicine

20. verklempt

a) bound and gagged

b) overcome with emotion

c) penniless

d) pruned

All done? Click the picture for the answers.

A surfer standing in a subway carriage holding a surfboard

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