Scrabble gets 5,000 new words in its dictionary

In an effort to not be a point "buzzkill," Merriam-Webster is adding "hashtag," "funplex" and "emo."

Aileen Graef

WASHINGTON, Aug. 5 (UPI) -- After going a decade without any updates, Merriam-Webster's Official Scrabble Players Dictionary has decided to get with the times by adding 5,000 new words including "selfie," "bromance" and "chillax."

The dictionary is a compilation of all the words legally allowed to be played on the Scrabble board. The new version will have about 100 new pages..


"These are words that have become part of the culture, part of the language and part of the dictionary," said Peter Sokolowski, the editor at large for Merriam-Webster.

Many of the words are slang or 21st-century vernacular like "vlog," "texter," "frenemy" and "chillax." Others are foreign words that have become more common among English speakers like "qigong," which is a Chinese exercise routine.

"[It's] a bit of a balancing act for us," said John Chew, co-president of the North American Scrabble Players Association. "We don't have any issue with slang, we just want to make sure the words are going to be around in the long run."

Scrabble players will benefit from taking a look at the new dictionary. The word "quinzhee" -- which is the Inuit word for a shelter made out of settled snow -- can be played for 401 points if the tiles are lined up correctly.

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