Column One: We speak Millennese (but don't ask us how to spell it)
Tuesday 28 December 1999
For those whose vocabulary is rooted in the Nineties, that means you'll have a coffee with an extra shot of espresso, spend time at the computer, check video attachments on your e-mail, then go to see a box-office hit film with - what else? - a computer simulation of a dead actor.
This is not the future: it is now. English is already assimilating words that spring from our obsession with the newest technologies as well as our continuing obsession with drinking coffee and watching fashionable movies.
Lexicographers say the new century is bringing a new vocabulary. Inelegant as they may sound, hotsy, synthespian and cleffer are the new buzz-words for dictionary compilers. Bloomsbury Publishing, which produced this year's Encarta World English Dictionary, has 320 experts in 20 countries keeping watch on what is fashionable in English - now spoken by two billion people.
They have selected a top 10 of words and phrases that are tipped to become part of our everyday language by next year and which are to be included in the next edition of the Encarta dictionary.
Even if we do speak millennial English, Bloomsbury's research has also confirmed that many of us cannot spell it. As we approach the new millennium, one of the most commonly misspelt words is - millennium. Many people miss the fact that there are two l's and two n's. The confusion, say Encarta specialists (perhaps assuming that a classical education is more ubiquitous than it is), relates to the fact that although millennium and millennial have two n's, millenarian and millenary have only one. This is due to the words' different Latin origins.
Kathy Rooney, editor-in-chief of the Encarta, said: "The English language is constantly changing and developing, so Bloomsbury have initiated a worldwide language-monitoring programme to record how words are used, how meanings change and to look out for new coinages as they appear in books, films, newspapers, journals and, of course, on the Internet."
New words to watch out for in 2000
Mouse miles, plural noun, the amount of time that somebody spends at a computer (humorous).
Replacement drink, noun, a drink that is designed to replace energy and electrolytes, used especially to assist the body in recovering from exercise.
Speedball, noun, a cup of filter coffee with an added shot of espresso.
V-mail, noun, video mail, especially a video clip sent as an attachment to an e-mail message.
Hotsy, adjective, lucrative and performing strongly at the box office: a hotsy opening for a film (slang).
- 1 Snoop Dogg and Jared Leto buy a stake in Reddit as A-list invests $50m
- 2 Prince held a Facebook Q&A and this is the only question he answered
- 3 Car tax disc changes: Two days to go - and they affect you much more than just not displaying a piece of paper
- 4 Now we know whose fault it is if you end up being murdered in Thailand
- 5 35,000 walrus gather ashore on north-west Alaska beach 'for a rest'
Snoop Dogg and Jared Leto buy a stake in Reddit as A-list invests $50m
Five-year-old Iris Grace is raising awareness of autism through her extraordinary paintings
Car tax disc changes: Five facts you never knew about your (almost obsolete) tax disc
The Aral Sea: Nasa pictures show how what was once the fourth largest lake in the world has become almost completely dry
Brad Pitt, on the moment he completely lost his temper with Clint Eastwood's son
Exclusive: 'Putin's Russia has been my biggest regret,' says Nato's outgoing Secretary General
The Osborne Ultimatum: Chancellor’s benefits freeze bombshell will affect ten million households
There’s no excuse for Dave Lee Travis’s behaviour, but we need to keep a sense of proportion
Should gay sex be illegal? 16% of Britons think so
Mark Reckless becomes second Tory MP to defect to Ukip in a month
Benefits 'smart cards' plan revealed by Iain Duncan Smith to stop claimants spending welfare money on alcohol
- < Previous
- Next >
£18000 - £23000 per annum + Uncapped OTE: SThree: SThree Group have been well ...
£18000 - £23000 per annum + OTE: SThree: Real Staffing Group is seeking Traine...
£120 - £140 per day: Randstad Education Leeds: We have an exciting opportunity...
Competitive: Randstad Education Manchester: SEN Teacher urgently required for ...