In a first, Oxford Dictionary explains 'heart' symbol for love


The "heart" symbol for love has become the first graphical entry in the Oxford English Dictionary in its 127-year history.

The heart symbol, as in I "heart" New York, is one of several controversial phrases among 45,436 new definitions in the latest online edition of the OED.

Others include the text message abbreviation OMG, meaning "Oh My God", "Wags", for footballers' wives and girlfriends, and "singledom", to reflect the growing number of single people.

Record levels of obesity have led to the inclusion of "muffin top", meaning "a roll of flesh which hangs visibly over a person's tight-fitting waistband".

"While symbols do become spelt-out words relatively frequently, it is usually only with a mundane meaning as the name of the symbol," the Daily Mail quoted Graeme Diamond, of the OED, as saying.

"It's very unusual for it to happen in such an evocative and tangential way."

"In English since the late 12th century, the heart has been thought of as the seat of love and affection," he stated.

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