Language is Literally Losing its Meaning

by Rachel Baker on August 24, 2013

The Oxford English Dictionary is changing the definition for ‘literally’ to include the figurative meaning.

It is literally the biggest semantics story of the week: the informal use of the word “literally” – as a term for emphasis when a statement isn’t true – has been included as a definition in the Oxford English Dictionary. Writers have responded, protesting very convincingly that we are breaking up the English language – we are like so many monkeys tossing around a Ming vase, the richest cultural property we possess.

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