Merriam-Webster Adds 2,000 New Words to Its Dictionary

FOMO, athleisure, and meet-cute get their own entries.

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Photo by Oktay Ortakcioglu/Getty Images

It might be time to update your vocabulary—1,400 new terms and phrases and 700 new senses of existing terms were added to the Merriam-Webster Unabridged dictionary. According to a blog post on the company’s site, some of the words are more technical (microloan and giclee are new entries), while many of them are slang words or abbreviations (like athleisure and ICYMI). The editors of the new version wrote that the updates “offer a kind of snapshot of how exactly our language expands” and that they had monitored the words for years before deciding to add them.

In addition to the new words and senses, the Merriam-Webster editors also updated the dictionary with revised and enhanced entries, plus thousands of new example sentences in word descriptions.

Take a look at some of the new words and their meanings below:

athleisure: casual clothing designed to be worn both for exercising and for general use

Bitcoin (also bitcoin): a digital currency created for use in peer-to-peer online transactions

cognitive map: a representation formed in the mind of one’s spatial environment

collapsar (plural collapsars): a massive star that undergoes gravitational collapse especially after colliding with another star

dipsogenic: producing thirst

dox: slang. to publicly identify of publish private information about (someone) especially as a form of punishment or revenge

fit and flare (or fit-and-flare): fitted through the waist and flaring out at or below the hips

FOMO (plural FOMOs): informal. fear of not being included in something (such as an interesting or enjoyable activity) that others are experiencing

giclée (plural giclées): 1. a process by which high-quality prints are produced using an ink-jet printer; 2. a print produced by giclée process

hella: slang. very, extremely (adverb); a lot of (adjective)

ICYMI: abbreviation. used to draw attention to something published or posted online earlier

meet-cute (plural meet-cutes): a cute, charming, or amusing first encounter between romantic partners (as in a movie)

microloan (plural microloans): a small loan typically for financing entrepreneurial projects by impoverished individuals and groups especially in poor or developing regions

microlending: the lending of money in small amounts to impoverished individuals and groups who are unable to obtain loans from mainstream banks

microcredit: credit in the form of microloans provided to impoverished individuals and groups

microbead (plural microbeads): a tiny sphere of plastic (such as polyethylene or polypropylene)

nomophobia: fear of being without access to a working cell phone

revenge porn (also revenge pornography): sexually explicit images of a person posted online without that person’s consent especially as a form of revenge or harassment

TMI: abbreviation. too much information

urban fantasy: a genre of imaginative fiction featuring supernatural characters or elements in an urban setting

verse: informal. to compete against or oppose (a person or team)

waggle dance: a series of figure-eight movements performed by a bee to indicate the direction and abundance of a distant food source

wacky tobacky: slang. marijuana