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Paper Monitor

12:49 UK time, Tuesday, 30 November 2010

A service highlighting the riches of the daily press.

Two titans of Fleet Street do battle today, in a war of words.

The first shot was fired when the online edition of the Oxford English Dictionary listed all the sources for its three million quotations.

Amid the crossfire, both the Times and the Daily Telegraph are claiming to be the newspapers that have helped to cultivate the English language.

The Telegraph says proudly that there are 251 words in the OED that originated within its pages, including "aeonial" (1965), meaning "age-long, eternal" and "zedonk" (1971), the offspring of a zebra and a donkey. It has 9,744 mentions in the OED in total.

The Times has a much longer list of words it has coined, 1,634 among a total 36,204 quotations. This puts it top of the OED's list of sources, ahead of William Shakespeare in second place.

That's quite some achievement, and one graciously acknowledged by the Telegraph.

Paper Monitor looked for itself in the rankings but is taking the disappointment of not being there firmly on the chin.

Now, is there a word for that?

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