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米辞書に新語登場、日本の言葉「ｚａｉｂａｔｓｕ」も (読売 2005/10/04)
New Merriam-Webster gives diners an 'amuse-bouche'
Mon Oct 3, 2005 6:54 PM ET
By Richard Satran
NEW YORK (Reuters) - What do you call a doctor who makes hospital visits to cut down on other doctors' hospital visits? A hospitalist, of course.
Those questions and other word teasers you may never have tried to puzzle out are defined in this year's updated edition of Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary, where words like "chick flick" make their debut this year.
With Massachusetts legalizing gay marriage and some other U.S. states offering gay couples legal rights, "civil union" also makes the dictionary, watched as much for cultural significance as for proper English usage.
With gourmet chefs becoming celebrities and their lingo entering the vernacular, "amuse-bouche" made the grade. That refers to the food morsels given gratis at expensive restaurants, where tasting menus often cost $100 or more. French for "entertains the mouth" -- without padding the bill.
Merriam-Webster Inc. President and Publisher John B. Morse said he looks for words entering common usage which are also being used in carefully edited publications.
"Language changes fast and we need to keep up to date," Morse said. This means adding "a few dozen to 100 new entries" annually.
High-tech has spawned most of the additions over the past decade. This year's batch include cybrarian, "a person who collects and manages information for the World Wide Web," and metadata, "data that provides information about other data."
Health-related words are also being added at a fast clip, including this year's SARS, an "acute respiratory disease."
Personal healthcare, lifestyle and hygiene -- words like "brain freeze" for the headache brought on by eating ice cream too fast, and "bikini wax" -- account for the balance of this year's language inflation.
If all these words sound "so last year," it's probably because they are. The dictionary publisher tries to edit its publication so words are truly being used and will continue to be used, said Morse.
Hazmat has long been insider slang for "hazardous materials." But it gained wider notice, and dictionary status, from a string of investigations following the anthrax letter mailings of 2001.
Words so boring it took more than 150 years to add them include otology, dating to 1842, the science that deals with the ear and its diseases. And "tide pool," whose usage dates to 1853, finally replaces "tidal pools" in referring to the puddles bikini-waxed sun bathers often dip their toes into.
For commercial reasons, the dictionary company does not list all of the nearly 100 words it adds because it does not want to tempt competitors to cut and paste the additions to their own lexicons.
The new words account for just a few of the book's 1,664 pages. No words are withdrawn until the dictionary undergoes its once-a-decade major revision.
Meantime, the book just keeps growing.
Posted on Mon, Oct. 03, 2005
Dictionary adds terms like chick flick
SPRINGFIELD, Mass. - Go ahead, treat yourself. Check out the latest chick flick, get a bikini wax or enjoy an ice cream that might give you a brain freeze.
And if you're not sure what you're getting yourself into, it might be wise to consult the latest edition of Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary which formally defines those terms that have taken root in American conversation.
The words are joined by 15 other new entries that make up the 1,664 pages of the newly published book. So if you're not interested in movies meant to appeal to women, discreet hair removal procedures or running the risk of feeling a sudden shooting pain in the head caused by ingesting very cold food, maybe there's another endeavor to catch your fancy.
Try steganography, the "art or practice of concealing a message, image, or file within another message, image, or file." That may not be the latest craze among hobbyists, but it's an activity that caught the attention of Merriam-Webster's lexicographers.
"We have editors who spend a part of each day reading magazines and newspapers, looking for evidence of how words are being more commonly used," said John Morse, Merriam-Webster's president and publisher. "We're looking for words that show up in the contexts that the average adult might encounter."
The new words offer explanations of emerging technologies and careers, thereby reflecting changes and developments in American society. You could try your hand at being a cybrarian (a person who finds, collects, and manages information available on the Internet,) or as a hospitalist ("a physician who specializes in treating hospitalized patients of other physicians in order to minimize the number of hospital visits by other physicians.")
The Springfield-based dictionary publisher has an ongoing list of about 17 million words it monitors. Every year, a few of them make it into print, followed by a succinct definition. Once a decade, the Collegiate Dictionary is completely rewritten, with some old words tossed out to accommodate the influx of about 10,000 of the latest nouns, verbs and adjectives. The last rewrite was done in 2003.
It takes about 10 years for a promising word to get into the dictionary from the time it first gets noticed. But some have a speedy rise to Merriam-Webster legitimacy, depending on the urgency of their meaning and impact
Among this year's fastest climbers is SARS, the acronym for the severe acute respiratory syndrome that began making headlines just two years ago with an outbreak in China.
"That was enough of a public health concern to get it in the dictionary right away," Morse said. "Now, one of two things could happen. Either we'll never hear about SARS again, and if so, I've wasted three lines of type in the dictionary. Or it will come back, and everyone will go to the dictionary in a time of need to see how SARS is defined."
Merriam-Webster is also recognizing civil unions, which have been talked about enough in social and political circles to earn a place in the Collegiate's latest edition.
The dictionary dates the term's genesis to 1992. But a Vermont lawmaker insists it wasn't really coined until 2000, when his state became the country's first to establish the legal rights of same-sex couples.
"We needed to decide a name for this, and we just didn't have one," said Bill Lippert, a Democrat who now chairs the Legislature's House Judiciary Committee. "Somewhere, someone said `civil union,' and we all said `oh, that sounds good.' It was a name that did what we wanted it to do. It was new, it designated that the fact that this was a civil act, and it suggested the bringing together of a union."
Others terms seem like they've been a long time coming.
Merriam-Webster traces the bikini wax's origins to 1985, and some spa owners say it's about time the hair-removal procedure made it into the dictionary.
"Bikini waxes are now old hat," said Shannon Fluery, owner of the Brooks and Butterfield Day Spa in Northampton, where as many as 40 women come in for a bikini wax each week. "It's not such a taboo as it used to be. People wouldn't talk about it too much and just did them at home. But salons have definitely picked up on them, and now they're very, very common."
At last, Merriam-Webster agreed.
Following is a partial list of new words and their definitions being entered into this year's edition of Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary.
Amuse-bouche (noun): a small complimentary appetizer offered at some restaurants.
Battle dress uniform (noun): a military uniform for field service.
DHS (abbreviation) : Department of Homeland Security.
Hazmat (noun): a material (as flammable or poisonous material) that would be a danger to life or to the environment if released without precautions.
Metadata (noun): data that provide information about other data.
Otology (noun): a science that deals with the ear and its diseases.
Retronym (noun): a term consisting of a noun and a modifier which specifies the original meaning of the noun. ("Film camera," for instance).
Tide pool (noun): a pool of salt water left (as in a rock basin) by an ebbing tide, called also tidal pool.
Wi-Fi (certification mark): used to certify the interoperability of wireless computer networking devices.
Zaibatsu (noun): a powerful financial and industrial conglomerate of Japan.
On the Net: http://www.merriam-webster.com/