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paranormal earlier than 1920

Perhaps it is fitting that mystery surrounds the appearance of the word ‘paranormal’, but can you help us solve it? [...]

Posted by OED_Editor on 7 October 2015 15.12

lock-in earlier than 1991

In the United Kingdom, after a bar or pub’s doors are closed at the official or legal closing time, customers already inside are sometimes allowed to stay and continue [...]

Posted by OED_Editor on 17 September 2015 19.58

parmo earlier than 2003

The ‘parmo’ is a food associated particularly with the area of Teesside, in north-east England. It consists of a fillet of breaded chicken, pork, or other meat that is fried and covered with béchamel sauce and [...]

Posted by OED_Editor on 12 June 2015 13.22
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Comments: 3

jackalope earlier than 1950

The jackalope is a mythical beast of the American West, in the form of a jackrabbit with horns like those of a deer or pronghorn antelope. The earliest evidence of the creature’s name found so far [...]

Posted by OED_Editor on 5 May 2015 19.32
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Comments: 1

legless (‘drunk’) earlier than 1975

The adjective ‘legless’ is used a slang term to describe someone who is extremely drunk, particularly someone who can no longer stand or walk. The earliest example we can find of [...]

Posted by OED_Editor on 18 December 2014 18.13
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Comments: 5

the Trade earlier than 1916

In nautical slang, the Submarine Service used to be referred to as ‘the Trade’. The Royal Navy launched its first submarine in 1901, but undersea warfare was not well regarded in all [...]

Posted by OED_Editor on 5 November 2014 16.08
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Comments: 6

well in earlier than 1997

Hugooooo provided a verifiable example from 1968.

People have been described as being ‘well in’ (on good or close terms) with another person or group since 1781. But a more recent development, at least in British and Irish colloquial use, is being tracked by the OED, specifically [...]

Posted by OED_Editor on 2 October 2014 17.33
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Comments: 6

FLOTUS earlier than 1983

FLOTUS (an acronym for ‘First Lady of the United States’), is a slang or jargon term for the wife of an American president, on the model of POTUS (President of the United States) and SCOTUS (Supreme Court of the United States). The latter terms [...]

Posted by OED_Editor on 23 July 2014 15.10
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Comments: 2

Mathematick Rules unknown source

OED editors are revising the word dialler n. and have researched a previously unrecorded sense, ‘a maker of, or expert in, sundials’, for potential inclusion. In attempting to find the earliest evidence for this sense, we encountered a mystery. Alice Morse Earle’s 1902 book Sun Dials and Roses of Yesterday includes, as an epigraph to Chapter [...]

Posted by OED_Editor on 3 April 2014 20.16
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Comments: 7

skive earlier than 1919

Bryn provided evidence of an earlier sense, which has now been dated to 1885.

One military slang word from the First World War which has become a core part of modern colloquial English in the UK is skive, meaning ‘to avoid work’. Our first quotation at present is from a 1919 magazine article, which lists ‘some of the most universal and expressive Army terms’: ‘To skive’, to dodge a [...]

Posted by OED_Editor on 21 February 2014 15.23
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Comments: 5