Fun interactive way to see what words were first used in print in a particular year

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I’m fairly sure the word “hijab” must have been used in print sometime before 1980

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It appears to be a list of words grouped by the year when they were added to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary. That is entirely different than what was represented in the article. Sometimes words are added to a dictionary quickly and other times they are used for years before being added.

The Oxford English Dictionary for decades (in print) has included the earliest known usage of a word in English. Likewise MW has had their own years indicated for the earliest known usage. I don’t know if they always correlate but the OED seems more rigorous and thorough in its documentation.

While the site is not without certain educational and amusement value, it is limited by the nature of what is collected and how it is presented.

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Yeah, this is just Merriam-Webster.

Even looking at the article image, “cybernaut” was used in book titles since the 1960s, it wasn’t first seen in 1989.

OED is the one true dictionary.

Must be first time in Websters. It lists “Generation X” as first appearing in 1989, and “Gen X” in 1992. We all know that at the very least Billy Idol’s band was known under both of these monikers as early as the late 70’s. Wiki tells me he got the name from the title of a book popular in Britain in the mid '60’s.

UPDATING: according to the page, “This is the date of the earliest recorded use in English, as far as it could be determined, of the oldest sense defined in the entry.”

So likely 1989 as the date of Copeland’s book is given as the source of it’s current definition (although they still get it wrong bc Copeland published his first article in Canada on the subject two years prior, in '87).

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