The Collins Dictionary has named 'Brexit' the word of the year and added it to its print edition after the publishers saw a record 3,400% surge in its usage. Brexit, which has been defined in the dictionary as 'the withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union', was first used in 2013. After the referendum on June 23 this year, the word made its way into everyday parlance.
Helen Newstead, Collins’s head of language content, told The Guardian, “Brexit is arguably politics’s most important contribution to the English language in over 40 years, since the Watergate scandal gave commentators and comedians the suffix ‘-gate’ to make any incident or scandal infinitely more compelling.” Besides, the word has also inspired new terms like ‘bremain’, ‘bremorse’ and ‘BrexPitt’ or “Bradxit”.
While Brexit has made it to the print edition of the dictionary, nine other new words will feature in the online version. Some of them are 'Trumpism' (the policies of Republican nominee Donald Trump), 'snowflake generation' (the young adults of the 2010s), 'sharenting' (the habitual use of social media to share news and images of one’s children), and 'mic drop' (a theatrical gesture of pretending to drop a mic to symbolise a dramatic finale).
Last year 'bingewatch' was named the word of 2015, after a 200% increase in its usage.