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Gen Z’s favourite ‘Rizz’ named word of the year 2023

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The publisher of the Oxford English Dictionary, Oxford University Press, has named “rizz” the word of the year for 2023.

The word Rizz is depicted as style, charm or attractiveness. It can also be said to mean one’s ability to attract a romantic or sexual partner.

The term is thought to be a shortened form of the word “charisma”, taken from the middle part of the word. Identical instances of this include refrigerator becoming fridge; influenza generally referred to as flu.

It can also be used as a verb, in sayings such as “to rizz up”, which means to attract, seduce, or chat someone up.

The word is mostly used on social media and it resonates most with younger generations. Hence, it might not indicate to be anything for those who are not Gen Z.

“Rizz was chosen by the language experts at OUP as an interesting example of how language can be formed, shaped, and shared within communities, before being picked up more widely.

“It speaks to how younger generations create spaces ­— online or in person — where they own and define the language they use,” OUP stated in a release.

The publisher said the word would be everyday language over time.

“The spike in usage data for rizz goes to prove that words and phrases that evolve from internet culture are increasingly becoming part of day-to-day vernacular and will continue to shape language trends in the future,” Oxford Languages President, Casper Grathwohl said in a statement.

The publishing platform noted that the word gained its peak popularity in June of this year after actor Tom Holland was asked in a Buzzfeed interview about his rizz, and he said he had “no rizz whatsoever.”

In an action to bring in younger users (Gen Z),  popular dating app, Tinder introduced a “rizz-first redesign” this year

Earlier on its X handle, OUP shortlisted rizz, beige flag, Swiftie, de-influencing, prompt, heat dome, situationship and parasocial as its Word Of The Year 2023.

Eventually, rizz emerged as the #WOTY23.

“It has been incredible to see the public once again enjoying being a part of the Word of the Year selection.

“Witnessing thousands of people debate and discuss language like this really highlights the power it has in helping us to understand who we are, and process what’s happening to the world around us,” Grathwohl said.

Earlier, Merriam-Webster also named rizz one of its top words of 2023 and in November 2023, Collins Dictionary had “artificial intelligence” as its word of 2023.

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