Reference questions about recently coined words or phrases or new meanings of old words present library users and librarians with a sometimes bewildering maze of information sources that range in quality from the scholarly to the amateur. In this article, Isaacson discusses some of the lexical issues concerning new words and evaluates new information in 1) unabridged dictionaries, 2) collegiate desk dictionaries, 3) new word dictionaries, 4) a journal devoted to new words, 5) a journal column and a magazine column about new words, 6) dictionaries of words that don’t exist, 7) various specialized dictionaries that may contain new and old words, and 8) Internet resources that may be helpful. All sources have to do with the English language; most were published since 1980 and include new words coined since 1960.
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