Venerable OED Turns to Readers for Help hele Norris talks with the Oxford English Dictionary's editor at large, Jesse Sheidlower. The dictionary is calling on the public for help as it looking for the origins of 40 terms used in everyday language, like "Bloody Mary" and "identity theft."
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Venerable OED Turns to Readers for Help

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Venerable OED Turns to Readers for Help

Venerable OED Turns to Readers for Help

Venerable OED Turns to Readers for Help

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  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/6724742/6724743" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
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More on the Word Hunt

Do you know where the drink "Bloody Mary" got its name? Or when the term "identity theft" was first used?

If you do, then editors of the Oxford English Dictionary want to hear from you.

The OED, as it's called, is turning to the public for help in tracking the origin of commonly used words with mysterious origins.

It's the second time the OED has launched a word hunt in conjunction with the BBC television program Balderdash & Piffle.

Jesse Sheidlower, editor-at-large of the OED, talks about the new list of 40 words and phrases, which includes terms such as "bonkers," "hoodie," "regime change" and "shaggy dog story."