Build your vocabulary with Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day! Each day a Merriam-Webster editor offers insight into a fascinating new word -- explaining its meaning, current use, and little-known details about its origin.
September 14th, 2015
Episode 319 of 900 episodes
Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day for September 14, 2015 is: neoteric \nee-uh-TAIR-ik\ adjective : recent in origin : modern Examples: The book's dialogue is peppered with neoteric slang and jargon that can be challenging for the reader to decode. " he has put together a string of projects with the same modern ethos that seemed avant-garde to the point of risky at their conceptionuntil customers began clamoring for his neoteric stamp." Anita Chabria, Sactown Magazine, October/November 2014 Did you know? The word neoteric is not itself neoteric; it's been part of English since at least 1577, and its roots go back even furtherto ancient Greek. We adapted the word from Late Latin neotericus, which also means "recent." Neotericus in turn comes from Late Greek neōterikos and ultimately from Greek neos, meaning "new" or "young." As old as its roots are, however, neoteric itself entered English later than its synonyms novel (which appeared in the 15th century) and newfangled (which was being used to describe things of the newest style or kind almost 50 years prior).