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The Oxford Dictionary of Modern Slang

The Oxford Dictionary of Modern Slang

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Slang is language with its sleeves rolled up, colorful, pointed, brash, and bristling with humor and sometimes hostility. From "forty-rod whiskey" and "five-finger discount" to "bum rap," "buzz off." and "fly by night." slang words add zest to everyday speech. Now, in "The Oxford Dictionary of Modern Slang", John Simpson and John Ayto have gathered together a vibrant collection of over 5,000 slang terms, drawn from the vast Oxford English Dictionary database.
Each entry contains the headword, part of speech, and definition. The great majority also have at least one illustrative example of the term in context, often drawn from writers such as John Updike, Gore Vidal, Louise Endrich. Jessica Mitford, and Thomas Pynchon. Many entries contain labels indicating the social group or discipline from which a word derives - Black English, theatrical, military, nautical - as well as the region where it originated. In addition, when the term has had more than one meaning, the various senses are listed chronologically.
Ranging from age-old (but still common) slang expressions such as "mamzer" (Hebrew, "bastard") which appeared in English usage as early as 1562, to recent coinages such as "wilding" (a gang of youths on a rampage) which first appeared in 1989, this is an authoritative, up-to-date record of slang throughout the English-speaking world.