The Official Dictionary of Unofficial English

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June 14, 2010


Mixed media product, 288 pages


0071491635 / 9780071491631


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Main description

  • The words come from different countries where English is spoken, such as the United States, the United Kingdom, Hong Kong, South Africa, and others
  • The author's website has received more than 1.2 million hits since its launch in 2004, and he is frequently interviewed about language in publications such as the New York Times

Author comments

Grant Barrett is a lexicographer and project editor for the Historical Dictionary of American Slang for Oxford University Press. He is the founder and editor of the Double-Tongued Word Wrester Dictionary (, a popular website that tracks new words from the fringes of English.

Back cover copy

This is not your paleoconservative's dictionary.

The Official Dictionary of Unofficial English is a collection of cutting-edge words used around the English-speaking world. From Nollywood to Califunny and Corrupticut to Trashcanistan, these words are hot off the street and the Internet, and they are definitely not in Webster's. Inside you'll learn more than 750 new words, their meanings, and how they became part of the English lexicon.

Bangalored adj. having been relocated to India; having lost business or employment due to such a relocation

Bugs Bunny changeup n. in baseball, a slow pitch disguised as a fast ball that seems to stop in front of the plate

cuff and stuff v. to (physically) place someone under arrest

fundagelical n. a fundamentalist or evangelical Christian

hillbilly armor n. scavenged materials used by soldiers for improvised bullet-proofing and vehicle hardening, esp. in Iraq

I love me wall n. a public display of awards, certificates, plaques, and photographs with or from celebrities

Orange Curtain n. the characteristics, real or imagined, that differentiate Orange County from Los Angeles County and the rest of California

sleeve v. to decorate an arm with tattoos

swankienda n. a mansion or large house

unass v. to dismount or disembark

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