Lots of people are looking up “pandemic” and “quarantine” and “Kafkaesque” in the dictionary.
Turns out people have some questions about the new coronavirus—and not just “what is social distancing, exactly” and “can I go to the gym?” This morning, Merriam-Webster lexicographer Peter Sokolowski tweeted this list of recent lookups in the digital dictionary:
Lookups @MerriamWebster, in order:
pandemic, coronavirus, quarantine, corona, epidemic, draconian, lockdown, novel, martial law, xenophobia, apocalypse, self-isolation, cancel, apoplectic, presumptive, endemic, mitigate, vector, calamity, virus, pestilence, postpone, Kafkaesque
— Peter Sokolowski (@PeterSokolowski) March 13, 2020
Kafkaesque, indeed. Stay safe out there. (Especially if you don’t already know the definition of “cancel.”)