noun \ˈslaŋ\

: words that are not considered part of the standard vocabulary of a language and that are used very informally in speech especially by a particular group of people

Full Definition of SLANG

:  language peculiar to a particular group: as
a :  argot
b :  jargon 2
:  an informal nonstandard vocabulary composed typically of coinages, arbitrarily changed words, and extravagant, forced, or facetious figures of speech
slang adjective
slang·i·ly \ˈslaŋ-ə-lē\ adverb
slang·i·ness \ˈslaŋ-ē-nəs\ noun
slangy \ˈslaŋ-ē\ adjective

Examples of SLANG

  1. <tends to use too much hacker's slang when talking to coworkers about their computer problems>

Origin of SLANG

origin unknown
First Known Use: 1756

Other Language Terms

cognate, collocation, homonym



Definition of SLANG

intransitive verb
:  to use slang or vulgar abuse
transitive verb
:  to abuse with harsh or coarse language

First Known Use of SLANG



noun    (Concise Encyclopedia)

Nonstandard vocabulary of extreme informality, usually not limited to any region. It includes newly coined words, shortened forms, and standard words used playfully out of their usual context. Slang is drawn from the vocabularies of limited groups: cant, the words or expressions coined or adopted by an age, ethnic, occupational, or other group (e.g., college students, jazz musicians); jargon, the shoptalk or technical terminology specific to an occupation; and argot, the cant and jargon used as a secret language by thieves or other criminals. Occupying a middle ground between standard and informal words accepted by the general public and the special words or expressions of these subgroups, slang often serves as a testing ground for words in the latter category. Many prove either useful enough to become accepted as standard or informal words or too faddish for standard use. Blizzard and okay have become standard, while conbobberation (“disturbance”) and tomato (“girl”) have been discarded. Some words and expressions have a lasting place in slang; for instance, beat it (“go away”), first used in the 16th century, has neither become standard English nor vanished.


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