Quarantine, confinement and pandemic are the three most searched words in the Dictionary of Royal Spanish Academy (RAE), which broke a historical record in the last month with 100 million digital queries, representing an increase in queries of 30% compared to February.
The situation caused by the coronavirus pandemic -which is not yet in the Dictionary- was the trigger for language queries, which, 58%, are carried out via smart-phone.
“By trend, the searches related to the current exceptional situation are the majority”, they explained from the RAE, and among the most searched words are state, virus, epidemic, confine, guard, contingency, decimate, care, raise awareness, chinstrap, confined, escalate, mediate, unemployment, face mask or innocuous.
Like coronavirus neologisms, the words are not in the dictionary either de-escalated, de-scale, sanitize or covid, and it is surprising that other concepts with a large number of searches are hoax, democracy, fascism or demagogy, as well as grass or cat.
Of the 100 million queries, most come from Spain, Mexico and Argentina, and the United States, with its large Spanish-speaking population, ranks seventh, the newspaper reported. The world.
Verb queries were also important and among the most wanted were: to err, to be silent, to foresee, to marry, to rebel, to want, to procrastinate, to pass, to satiate, to flee, to depart, to wither, to duty, to correct, to walk, to play, to grasp, to love, to open, to go out, to climb, to mediate, to alienate, to exacerbate, to feel, work, redeem or stay.
As for adjectives, the ranking is as follows: superb, alone, ineffable, fed up, mean, orthodox, harmless or vain.
Since last March 12, due to the quarantine, the RAE reinforced its online services, especially dictionaries, and the service of linguistic doubts through Twitter was especially active in recent weeks and answered more than 17,617 questions, many related to the coronavirus (and its gender) or the acronym COVID-19.
#RAEconsultas responds: “The acronym ‘COVID-19’ that gives the disease its name is normally used in masculine (‘COVID-19’) due to the influence of the genus ‘coronavirus’ and other viral diseases (‘Zika’, ‘Ebola’), which take their name from the virus that causes them.
But the use in women (‘COVID-19’), as the WHO does in its pages in Spanish, is justified as being ‘disease’.
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