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‘Jeggings’ Makes Oxford English Dictionary, ‘Cassette Tape’ Does Not


If the deaths of gifted songwriters Jerry Leiber and Nick Ashford didn't get you a little teary and nostalgic this morning, perhaps this news will: The word "jeggings" appears in the 12th edition of the Concise Oxford English Dictionary. The term "cassette tape" does not.

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Four hundred slang terms joined the dictionary last week, including "gastric band," "woot," and "mankini" -- a trio that truly defines our times. As the folks behind the dictionary explain on their blog, "These additions are just carrying on the tradition of a dictionary that has always sought to be progressive and up to date." As a result, the new edition "has no room" for older, more archaic words like "brabble," which means a noisy fight. And, according to the Huffington Post, "cassette tape," which means the way we all experienced Def Leppard's Hysteria.

There are more than 240,000 definitions in the 12th edition of the COED, which runs 1,728 pages long, and the expulsion of "cassette tape" has infuriated those who still use and love them. "See if they still have the moon listed in the dictionary. I bet they do," snapped Bucks Burnett, the owner of Dallas' Eight Track Museum, to HuffPo. "Nobody uses the damn moon anymore, not even NASA."

Okay, then! If it makes you feel any better, Merriam-Webster's online dictionary still has an entry for cassette ("a plastic cartridge containing magnetic tape with the tape passing from one reel to another"). Its example sentence: "The songs are available on cassette." For now, at least.

In the meantime, remember the might and majesty of the audio cassette tape with this iconic Maxell advertisement:

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