Savage Republic – I Married Thurston/ I Buried Thurston

Word of the Year Our Word of the Year choice serves as a symbol of each year’s most meaningful events and lookup trends. Savage Republic – I Married Thurston/ I Buried Thurston is an opportunity for us to reflect on the language and ideas that represented each year.

So, take a stroll down memory lane to remember all of our past Word of the Year selections. Change It wasn’t trendy, funny, nor was it coined on Twitter, but we thought change told a real story about how our users defined 2010. The national debate can arguably be summarized by the question: In the past two years, has there been enough change? Meanwhile, many Americans continue to face change in their homes, bank accounts and jobs. Only time will tell if the latest wave of change Americans voted for in the midterm elections will result in a negative or positive outcome. Tergiversate This rare word was chosen to represent 2011 because it described so much of the world around us. Tergiversate means “to change repeatedly one’s attitude or opinions with respect to a cause, subject, etc.

Bluster In a year known for the Occupy movement and what became known as the Arab Spring, our lexicographers chose bluster as their Word of the Year for 2012. 2012 saw the most expensive political campaigns and some of the most extreme weather events in human history, from floods in Australia to cyclones in China to Hurricane Sandy and many others. Privacy We got serious in 2013. Privacy was on everyone’s mind that year, from Edward Snowden’s reveal of Project PRISM to the arrival of Google Glass. Exposure Spoiler alert: Things don’t get less serious in 2014. Our Word of the Year was exposure, which highlighted the year’s Ebola virus outbreak, shocking acts of violence both abroad and in the US, and widespread theft of personal information. From the pervading sense of vulnerability surrounding Ebola to the visibility into acts of crime or misconduct that ignited critical conversations about race, gender, and violence, various senses of exposure were out in the open this year.

Identity Fluidity of identity was a huge theme in 2015. Language around gender and sexual identity broadened, becoming more inclusive with additions to the dictionary like gender-fluid as well as the gender-neutral prefix Mx. Xenophobia In 2016, we selected xenophobia as our Word of the Year. Fear of the “other” was a huge theme in 2016, from Brexit to President Donald Trump’s campaign rhetoric. Despite being chosen as the 2016 Word of the Year, xenophobia is not to be celebrated. Rather it’s a word to reflect upon deeply in light of the events of the recent past. Complicit The word complicit sprung up in conversations in 2017 about those who spoke out against powerful figures and institutions and about those who stayed silent.

It was a year of real awakening to complicity in various sectors of society, from politics to pop culture. Our choice for Word of the Year is as much about what is visible as it is about what is not. It’s a word that reminds us that even inaction is a type of action. The silent acceptance of wrongdoing is how we’ve gotten to this point. We must not let this continue to be the norm. If we do, then we are all complicit.

Quiz Yourself: Can You Tell Good Luck From Bad? Our Shangri-la Is A New Word Of The Day Quiz! Start your day with weird words, fun quizzes, and language stories. This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

This iframe contains the logic required to handle Ajax powered Gravity Forms. The emigration year of 1852 stands out as the year of illness and death on the trail for humans and animals alike. Most of the human toll was the result of cholera. While the diaries often suggest that the cattle died from an imaginary disease called “hollow horn”, it is thought by some experts that the loss of cattle was actually due to anthrax with the stress of the journey as a contributing factor. The diaries and journals available for that year mention seeing wagons “as far as the eye can see” both ahead and behind. While it has been estimated that over 10,000 adventurous souls started out for Oregon in 1852, an accounting of how many actually arrived is hard to determine.

It is thought that as many as 1,000 may have turned back. Death definitely took a toll and then there were those who, at the last minute, turned off for California. Indians were not as troublesome in 1852 as some of the other years. This was due, in part, to a treaty that was engineered by Thomas Fitzpatrick “Broken Hand” in 1851.

The size of the emigration also no doubt had a bearing. Trains were traveling so close to each other that it provided extra security. Most of the trains for 1852 were small in size due to the difficulty in finding water, camping spots and feed for the cattle. A larger train was simply too hard to manage. Most companies were made up of family and friends with single men hired to drive wagons and assist with the cattle. Assuming that a train consisted of  50 or fewer individuals it would mean that there were at least 200 separate trains headed for Oregon. As I compile the listing for 1852 I welcome any additions and corrections you care to make.

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