Every year Oxford Dictionary declares the 'Word of the Year' which tops the search activity and picks up steam through the course of the time. After ‘youthquake’ winning the title last year, the word ‘Toxic’, which means ‘poisonous’, has emerged as the winner in 2018 and netizens can’t help but accept that it describes the year perfectly. In its annual tradition last week, Oxford Dictionary announced the Word of the Year saying it had a search increase of 45 percent on the site.
The Oxford Word of the Year 2018 is... pic.twitter.com/DotlZxxJVe— Oxford Dictionaries (@OxfordWords) November 14, 2018
Jeffrey Sherwood, senior assistant editor, U.S. Dictionaries, Oxford University Press USA explains, “The word went form being something very literal until the 20th century. Then around [the emergence of] ‘toxic waste,’ our consciousness was raised at the importance of the word as it related to our environment.”
While the word has some serious connotation behind it, the moment it was declared the Word Of The Year, netizens could only think of one thing: Britney Spears saw it coming in 2003! Twitterati went crazy on the internet saying that Britney Spears was way ahead of her time and also questioned that when the singer made ‘Toxic’ word famous in 2003, then why it is the Word Of The Year now?
Interestingly, our research into ‘toxic’ found that pop icon @britneyspears played a part in spreading this metaphorical use of the word; the lyrics of her 2003 song ‘Toxic’ draw an extended metaphor of a lover as a dangerous yet addictive drug. #OxfordWOTY pic.twitter.com/4Zw9dkOp52— Oxford Dictionaries (@OxfordWords) November 15, 2018
Here are some other reactions to toxic as word of the year:
Britney Spears toxic came out In 2003...why is it the word of the year now?— Toni Phillips (@toniphillipsTP) November 16, 2018
Oxford's word of the year for 2018 is "toxic."— A.J. Hilton (@AJHilton_News) November 16, 2018
Great. Now I've got Britney Spears stuck in my head.
oxford declared “toxic” to be the word of the year and that’s why britney spears is way ahead of our time pic.twitter.com/CI4MVwWk0H— veggie terry 🍃 (@planeterryum) November 18, 2018
“Toxic” is the 2018 word of the year. Britney Spears popularized the word in 2003. https://t.co/tKeYUDAoLq— Matt Stopera (@mattstopera) November 17, 2018
Lol, Oxford dictionary’s word of the year is “toxic” and if that doesn’t sum up the world we live in today idk what does.— Meaghan (@IndyMeaghan) November 19, 2018
"The adjective toxic is defined as 'poisonous' and first appeared in English in the mid-seventeenth century from the medieval Latin toxicus, meaning 'poisoned' or 'imbued with poison'," explained Oxford Dictionary in a post.
"In 2018, toxic added many strings to its poisoned bow becoming an intoxicating descriptor for the year's most talked about topics." Other contenders for word of the year included gaslighting, incel, cakeism and orbiting.
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