Miley’s antics dictionarised! ‘Twerking’ added to Oxford dictionary


Twerking is really having a moment right now. On Wednesday, Aug. 28, Oxford Dictionaries announced that the booty-popping dance move would be found in future publications under the entry: “Twerk, verb.” Given that Miley Cyrus twerked for the world in everything from a unicorn onesie to flesh-colored, latex lingerie at the 2013 MTV VMAs, it seems like she should be part of the definition. But, alas, she is not. According to Oxford Dictionaries, the term twerking originated in the ‘90s aka back when a pre-twerk Miley was just a little girl growing up in Tennessee. The “informal” verb is defined as “[dancing] to popular music in a sexually provocative manner involving thrusting hip movements and a low, squatting stance.” (Way to make twerking technical, linguists.) Oxford Dictionaries’ Katherine Connor Martin said, per ABC News, twerking is most likely “an alteration of work, because that word has a history of being used in similar ways, with dancers being encouraged to ‘work it.’” “The ‘t’ could be a result,” she added, “of blending with another word such as twist or twitch.” Terrific. Twerking isn’t the only the only new addition to the Oxford Dictionary, though: selfies, emojis,food babies, fauxhawk (which seems very 2006, but OK), geek chic, jorts (way overdue) and pixie cut and all now defined as well. Squee, vom, and unlike were also added as verbs to future editions of the dictionary. Gotta love the English language!


  1. I searched Twerking in the Oxford dictionary but I realized later my edition was old. I loved this dance on youtube. A great post and you have added a lot to my knowledge.

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