All posts tagged: notting hill carnival

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Oxford English Dictionary Gets a Little ‘Twerk’

We’ve been doing it at the Notting Hill Carnival every summer, even as far back as 1820 according to the wordsmiths at the Oxford English Dictionary. Twerk, that is, but it is only now that the word has finally ‘twitched’ and ‘jerked’ its way into the latest refresh of the OED. Researchers found the word, one of 500 new dictionary entries, was first spelt ‘twirk’, described as a ‘twisting’ or ‘jerking’ movement or ‘twitch’. The verb is believed to have resurfaced in 1848 and the twerk spelling was in wide usage by 1901. American pop singer Miley Cyrus brought the dance to mainstream consciousness in 2013 at an MTV awards show as she gyrated in skimpy attire on stage. The OED describes twerking as dancing “in a sexually provocative manner, using thrusting movements of the bottom and hips while in a low, squatting stance”. Twerk may have even been borne out of a combination of the words twist or twitch and jerk, the dictionary says. Fiona McPherson, senior editor of Oxford English Dictionary, said: “We are confident that it …