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About 500 new words and variations are in play for Scrabble fans who rely on the game’s official dictionary to adjudicate any disputed plays.
The seventh edition of The Official Scrabble Players Dictionary is out this month through a long-standing partnership between toy maker Hasbro and publisher Merriam-Webster. The book, which was last updated in 2018, includes more than 100,000 words of two to eight letters. Along with the new entries, more than 200 racial, ethnic and otherwise offensive words have been removed from the dictionary.
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Scrabble is a word game for two to four players. It comes with 100 tiles, each bearing a single letter, that are used to form words either vertically or horizontally on a 15-by-15-square grid. There are two blank tiles that have no point value but can be used as any letter. Players take turns placing words (at least two letters long) on the board that they form from seven randomly selected tiles drawn from a bag. Each letter has a different value, ranging from 1 to 10, and some squares on the board increase the value of the letter or word played. If you use all seven tiles from your rack in a single turn, you get a 50-point bonus.
Scrabble Tile Values
- (1 point) — A, E, I, O, U, L, N, S, T, R
- (2 points) — D, G
- (3 points) — B, C, M, P
- (4 points) — F, H, V, W, Y
- (5 points) — K
- (8 points) — J, X
- (10 points) — Q, Z
FWIW: The record for the highest-scoring word in a Scrabble tournament was set in 1982 by Karl Khoshnaw, who played “caziques” (a plural form of a type of oriole) to earn 392 points.
Scrabble rules allow players to use any dictionary to settle disputes, as long as all the players agree on it before the game. But traditionalists tend to stick to the official book. You can also find accepted Scrabble words, along with the official rules of the game, online at scrabble.merriam.com.
Here are 11 new words to play to impress your Scrabble friends.
1. Grawlix (noun)
A group of symbols used to replace an obscene word
2. Zoomer (noun)
A person born in the late 1990s or the early 2000s
3. Kabocha (noun)
A type of Japanese pumpkin or squash
4. Verbing (verb)
To use a word, especially a noun, as a verb
Also playable: verbed, verbing, verbs
5. Vaquita (noun)
A small porpoise
6. Folx (noun)
Plural of folk
7. Faux-hawk (noun)
An upswept hairstyle resembling a mohawk
8. Vax (verb)
To administer a vaccine to
Also playable: vaxx, vaxxed/vaxed, vaxxing/vaxing, vaxxes/vaxes
9. Ambigram (noun)
A word that forms another word when viewed in a different way, such as “mom,” which can be flipped to say “wow”
10. Boricua (noun)
A native of Puerto Rico
11. Jedi (noun)
A person who shows skill or mastery