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Wiki elevated to Oxford English Dictionary

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It's official: "wiki" is now a fully-fledged member of the English lexicon, according to the latest update of the online Oxford English Dictionary (OED).

OED chief editor John Simpson said in a statement: "Words are included in the dictionary on the basis of the documentary evidence that we have collected about them. A while ago this evidence suggested that wiki was starting to make a name for itself.

"We tracked it for several years, researched its origins and finally decided it was time to include it in the dictionary."

Wiki has come a long way from its Hawaiian roots, Reuters notes, where "wiki wiki" means "quickly". The OED's principal editor of new words, Graeme Diamond, explained: "That the word acquired a new meaning is attributed to the fact that commenting and editing on internet websites became faster."

Other new boys in the OED include "asswipe", "bathorhodopsin", "claymation", "irritainment", "malware", "technopreneur" and "zipperhead". And just in case our pals across the channel think it's only they who are menaced by foreign imports, our beloved mother tongue now embraces "Bangla", "capoeira" and - by the Lord Harry and Saint George - "citron pressé" and "crème fraîche". ®

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