Twerk has been added to Britain’s Oxford Dictionary as a verb. Oxford Dictionary’s Katherine Connor Martin recently addressed the origin of the word, which has been used in music for years.
“There are many theories about the origin of this word, and since it arose in oral use, we may never know the answer for sure,” Martin said to the Associated Press. “We think the most likely theory is that it is an alteration of work, because that word has a history of being used in similar ways, with dancers being encouraged to ‘work it.’ The ‘t’ could be a result of blending with another word such as twist or twitch.”
Twerk will be added to the dictionary along with selfie, digital detox and Bitocoin.
The definition, according to AP, is to “dance to popular music in a sexually provocative manner involving thrusting hip movements and a low, squatting stance.”
Twerking has been in the news of late for several reasons. This month, Juicy J offered a $50,000 scholarship for the best student who can twerk and Miley Cyrus made headlines after twerking at the MTV Video Music Awards. Juicy J also crowned Cyrus “the best twerker hands down” following the performance, which can be seen below.