Roald Dahl Words Incorporated into the Oxford English Dictionary

Roald Dahl

The other day we were talking in Current Literature about some words that he Oxford English dictionary marked Shakespeare's own when it was confirmed that they were not and communicated that they would do an update. And less time ago we told you that I know they were 100 years old after the author's birth. Commemorating 100 years, the Oxford English Dictionary  has incorporated 6 new words invented by author Roald Dahl.

Roald Dahl will always be remembered for his witty children's stories as well as for creating some of the fictional characters most loved by readers. Some of his most famous titles are "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory", "Matilda" and "James and the Giant Peach", stories where he used a totally unique language to describe the worlds of these books, playing with sounds and bending linguistic principles to create these new words.

In honor that if the author were still alive today, he would have turned 100, the Oxford English Dictionary has decided to add some of Dahl's most famous words and phrases, including among them the famous «Oompa Lumpa». These words have been incorporated into its latest edition, which is now available.

"The inclusion in the DEO (Oxford English Dictionary) of a number of words coined and associated with Roald Dahl reflects both his influence as an author and his vivid and distinctive style."

"For many children, the works of Roald Dahl have not only been one of their first experiences in reading, but also their first exposure to the power of language creation."

There are six words that have been incorporated into the latest edition of the dictionary and they are the following:


This term refers to something that resembles or has characteristics of Dahl's works.

"It is usually characterized by plots, eccentric evil or disgusting adult characters, and a black or horrible humor."

Golden Ticket

Golden Ticket, or golden ticket in Spanish, refers to the famous ticket that marked Charlie's children and the chocolate factory who had won the factory tour. In the English dictionary it is defined as the following:

"Ticket that grants the holder a valuable or exclusive prize, experience of opportunities, etc."

human bean

Human bean or human bean in Spanish is a mispronunciation of the words "human being" (human being in Spanish) frequently used by the giant from "The great good-natured giant." However, the first use of "Human bean" dates back to the British satirical magazine Punch, who used this phrase in 1842.

oompa loompa

Possibly these are the first words that come to mind if we mention the author, some made up words from the play "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory." The Oompa Loompa were nothing more than Willy Wonka's workers that can be seen in Gene Wilder's 1971 film adaptation.


I'm not going to deny that it was hard for me to write the word, let alone pronounce it. Originally this word was used in "The American Theasaurus of Slang" in 1942 but, again, it became a word thanks again to the publication of "The Great Good-natured Giant."

witching hour

Wiching hour or Hora de las brujas in Spanish is an expression similar to the one Shakespeare used. In Hamlet, the author used the term "witching time" for the first time, however, it was Dahl who used the small variation that changed time by hour and made a different phrase. Repeating work, these words were obtained from "The great good-natured giant" and, according to the Oxford English dictionary, their meaning is as follows:

"A special moment in the middle of the night, when every child and every adult is in a deep sleep and all dark things come out of hiding so that they have the whole world to themselves."

And these have been the 6 words or combination of words that have recently been incorporated into the Oxford English dictionary.

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