back to article 'Meh' makes Collins English Dictionary

The interjection "meh" has beaten "frenemy", "huggles" and "jargonaut" for inclusion in the 30th anniversary edition of the Collins English Dictionary following an invitation to the unwashed masses to submit neologisms reflecting the current state of play with our beloved mother lingo. According to the Times, meh was chosen by …

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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    "Meh" in the dictionary

    I don't see why not. It's a perfectly cromulent word.

  2. Neil Barnes Silver badge
    Flame

    Meh...

    I'd comment but I can't be arsed...

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    perhaps not so new, but no-one cares about research

    It is perhaps likely it comes originally from the Greek Mu or Mju, often used with Alpha and Omega, meaning the beginning and end, making Mu mean the middle or neither the one or the other.

    Seems to fit better with how languages evolves, but i would not go so far as to correct someone who cannot see past their TV at the er thousands of years of history and creativety we had before the Simpsons.

  4. Danny Monaghan

    Meh!

    \gets coat

  5. dervheid

    Pftt!

    And?

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Coat

    Has to be said

    My initial response to this story? Meh

    /didn't even take the coat off

    (That's enough Mehs - Ed)

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Stupid

    It's just a publicity stunt for the new edition.

    They stick a bonkers word in so that dumbass journos with nothing better to write and an inability to find an actual story having spent all weekend sat in front of the telly getting plastered, devoid of the creativity required to fake or make a story will reproduce as if it's useful copy.

    However, in reality all they have done is slap together a half arsed advert for a dictionary at the bidding of some smelly tenured word geek in Oxford.

  8. Piers
    Joke

    People are increasingly writing in a register somewhere in between spoken and written English.

    I knew the Register fitted in somewhere...

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Well...

    Meh is better than Whatever (whateva) , At least it a new word actually conveying a fairly complex meaning not just a recycled word.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Joke

    meh

    Apparently the decision has been met with overwhelming indifference.

  11. Major N
    Coat

    May I be the first to say...

    Meh

    I'll get me coat.

  12. Tom

    Could have been worse...

    ...could have been "LULZ".

  13. Hollerith

    neologism chasing

    I've never understood the urge of dictionary makers to add the latest slang or catchphrases. It dates so quickly and, really, does anyone need to look up catchphrases and the cute-word-du-jour? They are common knowledge. Dictionaries are trying hard to be sexy, but I'd rather they give a word, say, 50 years to prove itself. Slang dictionaries are different creatures, and the etymology and history of use of slang is interesting of itself. But a slang dictionary records words and phrases that are ephemeral. Let's not confuse them with real dictionaries.

  14. Admiral Grace Hopper

    I do so wish

    That I could think of a comment to make that wasn't, "Meh", but I can't.

    Meh.

  15. Xander

    Almost, but meh

    I heard this on Radio 2, but apparently it's pronounced "may" as opposed to the phonetic "meh". I'd complain about this, but meh.

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Italian

    Haven't Italians been using just about the same word with this meaning for ages?

  17. Ken Hagan Gold badge

    What's with this Simpsons rubbish?

    Is this what passes for popular culture these days?

    Meh is Melchett's verbal diarrhea in Blackadder.

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    (untitled)

    ?!? I swear they must do it just to generate controversy.

    How can it be in common use when I've never heard it uttered?

    Right let's go for it, everyone sprinkle their conversations with the word "drifgom" all year. See if we can get it in.

  19. Tony Hoyle

    Dictionaries have always done this

    I had one years ago that was so old it had a definiton for 'Blackshirt' for example, which isn't a word you'd find in most dictionaries today (indeed google shows it only on wikipedia as a historical reference).

    Agree that cromulent should be in there as well (someone will probably claim that has latin roots as well).

  20. Adrian Jackson
    Thumb Up

    To be fair to 'meh'...

    It's been around for quite some time and is widely and regularly used (unlike 'frenemy' or 'jargonaut') and doesn't cause violent vomiting in 48% of the population (unlike 'huggles'). It probably meh-rits a place in the dictionary.

  21. Sandra Greer
    Thumb Up

    You need this stuff in dictionaries

    because 50 years from now, someone will be reading an archive and need to know what these things meant.

    Not to speak of English learners abroad now, or here about 5 years from now.

    I am delighted to have definitions of "twee" and "take the piss" in some dictionary, even now. Apparently "twee" entered the English language around 1905. The approximate Americanism is given as "corny", which appeared at about the same time, it seems, though it's hard to tell.

  22. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    General Melchett?

    Meh, Darling....

    Much like Gordon Brown come to think of it.

  23. Nic Brough
    IT Angle

    Suprisingly quick

    Given that I've been wearing the t-shirt for 5 years. Heck, it's even been on "the <logo> crowd"

  24. Anonymous Coward
    Go

    for the "meh" 'ers out there.

    the true meh'er would not have even been that bothered to even comment with a "meh". so those of you that did reply must have been more bothered to actually comment on such a thing. so liers, damn liers i call thee! for the very thing you are claiming to be, you are, by definition, as not, by your very proclomation!

    haha! have at ye, knave!

  25. this

    @Ken Hagan

    I always thought Melchett's was 'Meah' with the ea pronounced as a kind extended bleat. A somewhat extended meaning, to Meh - with a pleasing added hint of insanity.

  26. Yorkshirepudding
    Go

    how positively

    crumulant

    that is all

  27. Duncan Hothersall
    Heart

    Indeed

    Adding cromulent to the dictionary would embiggen us all.

  28. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    It's a perfectly cromulent word

    So what will they put in the philology section. You know, where the dictionary says that such-and-such a word came from old Norse and was used by Conan-Doyle and Bronte ?

    I guess they will just have to say that the dictionary publishers just saw it in a funny cartoon once.

    Good work chaps, carry on.

  29. Pascal Monett Silver badge

    Used to be impressed

    I used to be quite impressed by the concept of "living language" as opposed to a dead one. I always thought that a living language was a wonderful thing.

    Until I got an Internet connection.

    At that point I realized that the wonderful changing property of a living language is simply due to the overwhelming numbers of the uneducated masses that mangle parts of it so consistently that it becomes a new part of the language.

    Like astronauts drinking their own piss, it really erases the glory from the notion.

  30. Chris Matchett

    mef

    Just mef

  31. Anonymous Coward
    Joke

    I am anaspeptic...

    ...and phrasmotic that no-one has mentioned 'Blackadder' before now.

    You have my deepest contrafibularities (it's a common word, round our way)

  32. Mike
    Thumb Up

    New words

    I hereby suggest that any word used/promoted/injected into popular culture by The Simpson's, be known as a Simprosium.

  33. Ron Eve
    Happy

    Ready Darling?

    Shame Melchett can't meet up with our own illustrious chancellor...

    "Meh!"

    Never mind the septic version....

  34. Luther Blissett

    Italian

    Si pensi di "Beh"? Lots of good words have come from Italian - bimbo, tonto, gonzo, ghetto. But not manana, or meh methinks.

  35. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    cromulent

    I'd like to see the definition of that one...

    cromulent: respectable, spurious

  36. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Eh?

    Well I for one have never heard of this word before?

    Am I the only one?

  37. Anonymous Coward
    Coat

    Well, I for one

    Have really only seen this used in manga and anime. It's hardly a word in common use among normal people. I always figured cromulent was related to crapulent. Got coat, leaving now.

  38. KarlTh

    @skelband

    So there's a word you've not heard. Meh.

  39. John
    Unhappy

    Another perfectly good word subverted...

    As any Dundonian (look it up for goodness sake) knows, meh is a perfectly good word, now stolen from us by the arbiters of (arbitarily) popular taste.

    Just what am I going to use instead in the popular phrase "meh peh fell doon the Wellgate steps"?

    Eh?

  40. Bruce
    Go

    waiting for...

    "teh' - writer can't be arsed using a spell chequer

  41. yeah, right.

    dictionaries...

    ...are descriptive, not prescriptive. So long as they document where they got the usage from, and date its first known use, then they're doing what they were meant to do.

    If you want historical usage, then get a historical usage dictionary. Dictionaries of contemporary language need to keep up with what is actually contemporary. "meh" seems to fit that definition.

  42. RogueElement
    Dead Vulture

    meh?

    OFFS, by the same argument, should also be included. But I do protest, doth the man protest too much? Meethinks not. An article with no Paris Hilton is bad enough, No IT theme (unless we are to consider the bullsh.. that the Collins Dictionary appears to be desperate to emulate) normally attracts words of derision... but no PH, no IT and no fekkin IQ either? Must be a recession in the media too.

    "Al hiv an ingin in an ah", as every Dundonian knows, is lunch.

  43. mutt1170
    Coat

    CED have offically added Meh to our linguistic lexicon

    May I be the first to offer my sincerest pericombobulations?

    ----------------------------------

    Mine's the one with "The Whole Rotten Saga" in the pocket

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