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Popular Indian word “Aiyoh!” included in the Oxford English Dictionary

OED included “Aiyoh” and “Aiyah” in its latest addition this September

Dictionary. Representational image. Pixabay

New Delhi, October 9, 2016: Indians would know, how often their day begins with Aiyoh or may be a variant of that when they are questioned something. It does creep into every day’s talk at some point.

Aiyoh! This expression is so widely used that Oxford English Dictionary (OED) decided to now include the word in it.

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The OED is the Bible of correct English for children and at times, even for the adults in the English-speaking world. It is more of a guide on the language, something you would scamper to when you are in doubt. People who swear by it say, if a word is not in the dictionary, it is not English.

It included “Aiyoh” and “Aiyah” in its latest addition this September (it does four updates every year). It has also included entries such as scrumdiddlyumptious (delicious) and yogasana (no explanation needed, one hopes).

Like other Indian words, this one is also loaded and depending on context and tone it can mean many things.

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Depending on the context and tone, you can have different meanings  like disappointment, dismay, pain, lament, irritation, disgust, surprise, with both the words ‘aiyoh’ and ‘aiyah’

The words are also credited to Mandarin and Cantonese dialects of the language Chinese.
But these variants are also there in Tamil, Sinhalese, and are also used in many South East Asian countries, like Singapore and Malaysia.

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South Indians will agree how common the word is. It is so common that if the depiction of a south Indian is done in the north, especially in a Bollywood flick, you can almost bet “Aiyyo” will be one of the first words to be used.

– by Pinaz Kazi of NewsGram. Twitter: @PinazKazi

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  • Antara

    So, Oxford English Dictionary takes a note on the Indian colloquial languages! Wonderful!!

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Oxford English Dictionary adds over 600 New Words, Phrases and Senses in its Latest Edition

  • “Post-truth” was the Oxford’s 2016 word of the year
  • The use of “woke” by supporters of the Black Lives Matter movement

London, June 29, 2017: The Oxford English Dictionary has added over 600 new words, phrases and senses in its latest quarterly update.

“By the mid-20th century, ‘woke’ had been extended figuratively to refer to being ‘aware’ or ‘well informed’ in a political or cultural sense,” the Oxford English Dictionary (OED) said in a statement.

The use of “woke” by supporters of the Black Lives Matter movement — an international activist movement that campaigns against violence and racism toward black people — and in particular the phrase “stay woke”, are thought to have introduced the word to a broader audience, especially on social media, Xinhua news agency reported on Thursday.

“Post-truth” was the Oxford’s 2016 word of the year. It was defined as “relating to or denoting circumstances in which objective facts are less influential in shaping political debate or public opinion than appeals to emotion and personal belief”.

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Besides, over 50 new words and 30 new senses related to tennis were added. “Tennis mom” and “tennis dad”, for example, are now used to describe parents who actively and enthusiastically support their child’s participation in the sport.

The dictionary has also got a new end. “Zyzzyva”, a tropical weevil native to South America, is the new last in place of “zythum”, a kind of malt beer brewed in ancient Egypt, which was the last alphabetic entry for a decade.

Meanwhile, the word “thing” now has a new sense defined as “a genuine or established phenomenon or practice used in questions conveying surprise or incredulity, such as ‘how can that be a thing?’,” said the OED, adding that the usage has been traced back to an early episode of television series “The West Wing”.

In explanation of how a word qualifies for take-in, the OED said it “requires several independent examples of the word being used, and also evidence that the word has been in use for a reasonable amount of time.”

The OED will publish its next update in September. (IANS)