Zooey Deschanel Deserves Credit For Fun New Word In Merriam-Webster

It’s inconceivable to separate the phrase “adorkable” from the profession of the pleasant Zooey Deschanel. The phrase, which was first popularized on-line within the early 2010s, is getting renewed consideration because of its addition to the Merriam-Webster dictionary this month. Let’s take a dive into the etymology of “adorkable.”

‘Adorkable’ Is A Portmanteau

As you possibly can most likely guess, “adorkable” is a mixture of the phrases “adorable” and “dork.” This particular type of word-fusion known as a portmanteau, and we use them in English much more usually than you would possibly notice. Motel, brunch, podcast, and brainiac are all generally used portmanteaus. They’re so broadly used that they’ve taken on a separate that means from their origin phrases.

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“Adorkable” has an identical historical past. Whereas it was as soon as a delightfully quirky adjective reserved for Twitter, it’s now a dictionary-recognized phrase utilized in on-line and in-person dialog alike. Nonetheless, the phrase has an attention-grabbing historical past. Not all Millennial web slang makes it into Merriam-Webster. Right here’s a quick historical past of “adorkable” in fashionable tradition.

The First Use Of The Word Traces Again To 2001

In 2012, Vulture did a deep dive into the quirky phrase and located its earliest incarnation within the type of a private weblog. On February 27, 2001, an individual named Hilary claimed the online handle adorkable.blogspot.com. It appeared to be an internet diary of a teenage lady, with loads of ramblings a couple of boy named Josh and arguments together with her dad and mom. Whereas there’s no telling when the phrase “adorkable” first got here into use, it appears like Hilary launched it to the web.

Then, on January 20, 2003, consumer Miss AnGie added “Adorkable” to UrbanDictionary.com. “Simply adorable but in the utmost dorky way. Cute. Silly. Funny. Spiff,” the definition learn. The instance sentence learn, “Oh that AnGie is SO adorkable!” In 2006, the phrase earned the celebrated honor of “Urban Word of the Day.” In 2007, Time journalist Joel Stein wrote an article about The O.C. actor Adam Brody referred to as “Looking for Mr. Adorkable,” additional affirming the phrase as its personal related adjective.

‘Adorkable’ Reached New Heights In 2011

Nonetheless, we doubt “adorkable” would have made it into any dictionaries had it not been for the Fox sitcom New Woman. Elizabeth Meriwether’s quirky sitcom starring Zooey Deschanel was the essence of adorkable in its first season. Deschanel already had a popularity because the offbeat, hipster chick with a love for all issues musical and classic.

Because the lead of New Woman, the present closely leaned into Deschanel’s beloved quirky nature. The tagline on promotional photographs learn, “Simply adorkable.” The phrase was inescapable as buzz for the brand new present elevated which solely inspired extra use of the phrase itself—particularly among the many present’s followers. Just some years later, the phrase received a Twitter ballot and was entered into the Collins English Dictionary.

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After all, Deschanel later mentioned she resented how folks used the phrase to explain her personal private life. “That’s a word that describes the character that I play, not me. I don’t personally have identification with that word myself,” she told the Huffington Post in 2015, insisting it was the present’s advertising and marketing crew that leaned so closely into her adorkable-ness.

Nonetheless, the phrase owes its place within the Merriam-Webster dictionary a minimum of partly to Deschanel and her great, adorkable character, Jessica Day, from New Woman.

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