‘Fabeltjesfuik’ or ‘Coronamoe’, which word best defines 2020?

Photo: HandigeHarry via Wikimedia Commons
Photo: HandigeHarry via Wikimedia Commons

Which word best captures the past year? Dictionary maker Van Dale has selected 20  which will compete for the title of word of the year and it will not come as a huge surprise that 15 of the shortlist have to do with the coronavirus.

Anderhalvemetersamenleving (metre and a half society), coronamoe (tired of corona), eenzaamheidvirus (loneliness virus) and covidioot, hoestschaamte (cough embarrassment), raambezoek (window visit, to see an elderly relative on the other side of a window) and viruswappie (virus conspiracy theorist) are all jostling for position.

Other words on the list include racismeknielen (literally racism kneeling), invented by Nausica Marbe, a columnist in the Telegraaf, and which means to bow down to anti-racist sentiment.

Another contender is Fabeltjesfuik (nonsense trap) which was invented by comedian Arjen Lubach to indicate the online parallel world inhabited by conspiracy theorists.

Here is the complete list, your vote has to be in by December 14. Van Dale will announce the winner on the 15th.

  • anderhalvemetersamenleving
  • blokjesverjaardag
  • coronamoe
  • covid
  • covidioot
  • eenzaamheidsvirus
  • fabeltjesfuik
  • hoestschaamte
  • infodemie
  • jojolockdown
  • klimaatwanhoper
  • kuchscherm
  • lockdownfeestje
  • raambezoek
  • racismeknielen
  • stekkergekte
  • testsamenleving
  • uitsluitingscultuur
  • viruswappie
  • zelfquarantaine


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