Kosakata Bahasa Inggris mendekati 1 Juta

Bahasa selalu berkembang. Kosakata selalu bertambah. Bahasa apapun di dunia mengalami hal ini. Kosakata bahasa Inggris menurut laporan BBCIndonesia.com hampir mendekati 1 juta kata.

Bahasa Inggris diprediksi segera memiliki kosa kata ke satu juta dalam waktu dekat ini. Prediksi itu dikemukan sebuah perusahaan riset bahasa yang memantau penggunaan bahasa di Internet. Namun, penyusun kamus tradisional tidak begitu yakin dengan isi prakiraan tersebut.

The idea of the millionth word entering the English language is a brilliant bit of public relations for Texas-based Global Language Monitor. GLM runs a powerful search service which monitors web traffic. They make their money telling organisations how often their name is mentioned in new media, such as the internet.

What they can also do is search for newly coined words. Once a word has been used 25,000 times on social networking sites and such like, GLM declares it to be a new word. By their calculations a new word is created in English every 98 minutes, hence the estimate that the millionth word is about to be created.

If you talk to lexicographers, however, dictionary professionals, they tell a slightly different story. Dictionaries have tighter criteria about what constitutes a new word, for example, it has to be used over a certain period of time. Lexicographers will tell you that the exact size of English vocabulary is impossible to quantify, but if you accept every technical term or obscure specialist word then we’re already way beyond a million. And if you restrict inclusion of specialist slang, then there are possibly three quarters of a million words in English. All of which is way beyond the 20 – 40,000 words that a fluent speaker would use, or the few thousand you could get by with in English. Basically, with 1.5 billion people speaking some version of the language, it’s small wonder English is the fastest growing tongue in the world.

Lawrence Pollard, Arts Correspondent, London

public relations
kegiatan memelihara hubungan baik antara suatu organisasi dan masyarakat di luarnya, sering disingkat ‘PR’ , humas

monitors web traffic
memeriksa dan mencatat situs-situs yang dikunjungi orang

newly coined
(hanya dalam bahasa) baru diciptakan atau digunakan untuk kali pertama

tighter criteria
batasan yang lebih ketat untuk menilai atau memutuskan sesuatu

constitutes
dipandang sebagai, merupakan

quantify
mengukur, atau menghitung

obscure
kurang begitu dikenal

restrict inclusion of specialist slang
membatasi penambahan bahasa informal

small wonder
tidak mengherankan, wajar saja

tongue
bahasa

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