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Lookups spiked on August 10, 2011.


The word was widely used in accounts of rioting in London and other UK cities.

As one British newspaper reported,

"One of the capital's busiest areas was the centre of 'anarchy' last night as hundreds of youths went on the rampage, smashing windows and looting stores." – Andrew Hough, The Telegraph, August 9, 2011

Used in this sense, anarchy refers to "a situation of confusion and wild behavior in which the people in a country, group, organization, etc., are not controlled by rules or laws."

It comes from the ancient Greek anarchos, meaning "having no ruler."

Photo credit: Andy Armstrong / flickr

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