Merriam-Webster Declares Ms. Marvel's 'Embiggen' Is a Real Word

In this dumpster-fire of a year Merriam Webster has embiggened its dictionary

Merriam-Webster has added “embiggen,” coined on"The Simpsons in 1996 to its dictionary

"If you're likely to encounter a word in the wild, whether in the news, a restaurant menu, a tech update, or a Twitter meme, that word belongs in the dictionary", Merriam-Webster wrote. They include "glamping" ("outdoor camping with amenities and comforts not usually used when camping"), "dumpster fire" (as in, "putting glamping in the dictionary is a dumpster fire idea"), and "mansplain" (to use it in a sentence: "Let me explain why putting glamping in the dictionary is a dumpster fire idea").

Merriam-Webster added the word "embiggen" to its pages on Monday, the dictionary giant announced, culminating a 22-year journey to mainstream acceptance for the word that originated on a "Simpsons" episode. But it was "embiggen" that became the "stealth lexical champion" of the scene, according to Merriam-Webster lexicographer Kory Stamper. If anything, it's just describing the collapse of society. A word used to identify other words is a new tool for linguists, and a demonym names a person who comes from a specific place, like Hoosier or Parisian.

But "embiggen" didn't start with Kamala Khan. You may have seen some Ms. Marvel covers in passing and thought it was a trick of perspective, but no - she really can make her fists the size of engine blocks, and pack a punch to match.




Language is dynamic and reflective of cultural trends and the latest round of words promoted from colloquial to official prove as much.

Merriam-Webster lexicographer Emily Brewster tweeted "Happy Embiggened Dictionary Day!" while Merriam-Webster tweeted about why "dumpster fire" is now a coined phrase in the dictionary.

Congratulations to The Simpsons and Ms. Marvel - on their perfectly cromulent contributions to the English language.

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