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National Dictionary Day is observed annually on October 16. Celebrate by learning a new word or two! It would be fun to play Scrabble or Balderdash.
Why is Dictionary Day celebrated on October 16th? It's the birthday of the pioneering American lexicographer Noah Webster. In 1806, Webster published his first dictionary, A Compendious Dictionary of the English Language.
In 1807, Webster began compiling an expanded and fully comprehensive dictionary, An American Dictionary of the English Language; it took twenty-seven years to complete. To evaluate the etymology of words, he learned 26 languages, including Old English (Anglo-Saxon), German, Greek, Latin, Italian, Spanish, French, Hebrew, Arabic and Sanskrit.
Webster completed his dictionary during his year abroad in Paris, at the University of Cambridge. His book contained 70,000 words, of which 12,000 had never appeared in a published dictionary before. He believed The United States “should be as independent in literature as she is in politics.”
As a spelling reformer, he believed that the English spelling rules were unnecessarily complex so in his dictionary he introduced American English spellings, replacing “colour” with “color”, substituting “wagon” for “waggon” and printing “center” instead of “centre”. Webster also added American words such as “skunk” and “squash” that did not appear in British dictionaries.
How to observe the day
- Teach someone a rare word you know.
- Use #NationalDictionaryDay to post on social media.
- Learn a couple of words by using a dictionary.
- Play Scrabble!

Here are some funny words to say today:

Cattywampus. This term refers to something that is in disarray, that is askew, or something that isn’t directly across from something.
Bloviate. This refers to people who talk for a long period of time or who inflate their story to make themselves sound better. This also refers to someone whose words are empty and have no meaning.
Nudiustertian. Have you ever wished that you had a word for the day before yesterday? This is that word!
Pandiculation. This is what happens when you wake up in the morning and stretch. As you stretch, your muscles might go rigid for a short time, which can sometimes be uncomfortable.
Lollygag. The definition is someone who is messing around or wasting time. It also refers to someone who is doing something that isn’t serious or useful.
Widdershins. This is another way to say something is moving counter-clockwise or something is moving in the wrong direction.

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