Tue, Jan 16, 2007 - Page 14 News List

You've been plutoed! 你被除名了!

Pluto is finally getting some respect — from wordsmiths. "Plutoed" was chosen as the 2006 Word of the Year by the American Dialect Society at its annual meeting on Friday.

To "pluto" is "to demote or devalue someone or something," much like what happened to the former planet last year when the General Assembly of the International Astronomical Union decided Pluto did not meet its definition of a planet.

"Our members believe the great emotional reaction of the public to the demotion of Pluto shows the importance of Pluto as a name," said Society President Cleveland Evans. "We may no longer believe in the Roman god Pluto, but we still have a sense of personal connection with the former planet."

"Plutoed" won against "climate canary," defined as "an organism or species whose poor health or declining numbers hint at a larger environmental catastrophe on the horizon."

Other words in the running were: murse (a man's purse), flog (a fake blog that promotes products) and macaca (an American citizen treated as an alien).

Former Senator George Allen, a Republican who sought re-election last year, was comfortably ahead in polls until August, when he referred to the son of Indian immigrants as a macaca, regarded by some as a racial slur. Allen lost to Democrat Jim Webb. You could say that he plutoed himself!

The 117-year-old American Dialect Society includes linguists, grammarians, historians and independent scholars. In conducting the vote, members do so for fun and not in any official capacity of inducting words into the English language. 



「to pluto」表「降級或貶值某人或某物」,正如同冥王星去年的遭遇,因為國際天文學聯合會裁定冥王星不符合行星的定義標準。

Today's Words 今天單字

1. wordsmith n.

文字愛好者 (wen2 zi4 ai4 hao4 zhe3)

例: James is quite the wordsmith.


2. dialect n.

方言 (fang1 yan2)

例: It's sometimes hard to understand the local dialect.


3. demote v.t.

降級 (jiang4 ji2)

例: It is illegal to demote an employee without reason.


4. induct v.t.

吸收...為 (xi1 shou1…wei2)

例: He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame



「Plutoed」擊敗「climate canary」而勝出,後者定義為「健康狀況不佳或數量下降的有機物或物種,預示著即將發生的大規模環境災害」。




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