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The Washington Post

Vax -- Oxford Dictionary's Word of the Year

The pandemic spawned multiple variations on the word vaccine but 'Fauci ouchie' and inoculati also entered the lexicon

The British company that publishes the Oxford English Dictionary has named “vax” as 2021’s word of the year .

The formerly rarely used word, which dates to the 1980s, refers to the act of getting vaccinated or a vaccine. By September this year, though, its usage had skyrocketed, according to Oxford Languages.

“It is rare to observe a single topic impact language so dramatically, and in such a short period of time become a critical part of our everyday communication,” the company said in its recent report.

A host of “vaccination” variations have appeared during the pandemic, although “anti-vaxxers” — a term for those who are against getting vaccinated — existed as early as 1812, when British vaccine advocate and physician Edward Jenner complained: “The Anti-Vacks are assailing me . . . with all the force they can muster in the newspapers.”

Read more about this trend in The Washington Post.