Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Scrabblers rejoice: hashtag, selfie among 5,000 new words

To Scrabble fanatics, big gifts sometimes come in small packages.

The word "te" as a variant of "ti," the seventh tone on the musical scale, is a hardworking little gem among 5,000 words added to The Official Scrabble Players Dictionary, out Aug. 11 from Merriam-Webster.

The dictionary's last freshening up was a decade ago. Entries in the forthcoming book also include "texter," "vlog," "bromance," "hashtag," "dubstep" and "selfie."

But it's the addition of "te" and three other two-letter words — "da," "gi" and "po" — that has Robin Pollock Daniel excited. Daniel, a clinical psychologist in Toronto, is a champion of the North American Scrabble Players Association.

"Being able to hook an 'E' underneath 'T' means that I can play far more words," said Daniel, who practices Scrabble two to four hours a day. "Sometimes you play parallel to a word and you're making two-letter words along the way. I call those the amino acids of Scrabble. The more two-letter words we have, the more possibilities a word will fit."

One woman's "te" is another man's "qajaq," one of Peter Sokolowski's favorites among the new words. He's a lexicographer and editor at large for Merriam-Webster, which is based in Springfield, Mass.

"Qajaq," he said in a recent interview with Daniel, reflects the Inuit roots of kayak and would require a blank tile since Scrabble sets include just one "Q." But it's a rare word starting with "Q" that doesn't require a "U."

The new words add about 40 pages to the dictionary, which already lists more than 100,000. Merriam-Webster didn't identify all 5,000 new words but released a list of about 30.

Scrabblers rejoice: hashtag, selfie among 5,000 new words 08/04/14 [Last modified: Monday, August 4, 2014 10:43pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Review: Arcade Fire open hearts, play with passion at the USF Sun Dome in Tampa

    Blogs

    Gloves off, hearts open and disco balls glittering, Arcade Fire scaled the stage for the first time ever in Tampa, pouncing and flailing and performing with all the passion that’s made them one of the world’s most celebrated rock bands this century.

    Arcade Fire performed at the USF Sun Dome in Tampa on Sept. 22, 2017.
  2. Lightning's Steven Stamkos looks close to top form in first game since November

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — The wait felt like forever for Lightning captain Steven Stamkos, having gone 10 months without playing in a game.

    Victor Hedman, far left, is especially happy to see Steven Stamkos back after Stamkos assists on his goal 33 seconds into the game vs. the Predators.
  3. Rays journal: Alex Cobb may have pitched last game in Rays uniform (w/video)

    The Heater

    BALTIMORE — RHP Alex Cobb pitched well enough to lead the Rays to an 8-3 win over the Orioles on Friday.

    Wilson Ramos gives thanks after hitting a grand slam during the second inning, putting the Rays up 4-0.
  4. Steven Souza Jr. vindicating big trade for Rays

    The Heater

    BALTIMORE — There was a time when the three-team, 11-player transaction the Rays orchestrated to get Steven Souza Jr. from the Nationals looked liked a bad deal.

    The Rays’ Steven Souza Jr. has 30 home runs this season while improving his defense and baserunning but wants to improve on his .236 batting average.
  5. Fennelly: Lightning's Manon Rheaume made history 25 years ago Saturday

    Lightning Strikes

    The name is part of Lightning history, hockey history, sports history.

    Lightning goalie Manon Rheaume became the first woman to play in an NHL game 25 years ago today.