Dad Bod, TBH and Fluffernutter: The Best of Merriam-Webster’s 455 Words Added to the Dictionary (Pop at Palmetto)

Ana Martinez, Online Editor-in-Chief

During the week of Oct. 30, Merriam-Webster added 455 new words to their dictionary. Many of the words — TBH and FTW, for example — point to pop culture references; other words refer to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Founded in 1847, Merriam-Webster began adding new words to the dictionary based on their usage. To this extent, editors of the dictionary study language and how often individuals use each word—roughly once every 10 to 12 years. Through these additions, the dictionary currently contains roughly 470,000 words. 

Below are some of the top words added to the dictionary:

  • Astroturf

Noun. Organized activity intended to create a false impression of a widespread, spontaneously arising grassroots movement in support of or in opposition to something, but that is in reality initiated and controlled by a concealed group or organization.

  • Because

Preposition. The definition for “because” has become more versatile. The definition implies “by reason of” or “because of” and is used in a humorous way to explain the reason for which something occurred. For example, “She arrived late because traffic.”

  • Dad bod

Noun. Informal: A physique regarded as typical of an average father, especially one that is slightly overweight and not extremely muscular.

  • Fluffernutter

Noun. A sandwich made with peanut butter and marshmallow creme between two slices of white sandwich bread.

  • FTW

Abbreviation. Slang: for the win — used especially to express approval or support.

  • Ghost Kitchen

Noun. A commercial cooking facility used for the preparation of food consumed off the premises. Many ghost kitchens were established during the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • Long COVID

Noun. A condition that includes the presence of symptoms such as fatigue, cough, shortness of breath, headache or brain fog which persist for an extended period of time following a person’s initial recovery from COVID-19 infection. Also known as post-COVID syndrome.

  • TBH

Informal: to be honest. For example, “TBH, I will never get tired of eating pizza, pasta, sashimi and ramen.”

Definitions acquired from Merriam-Webster Dictionary.