Muggle, n.4 : Oxford English Dictionary

J.K. Rowling - Borders books

An Example of a Muggle, a rather superior Muggle with a gift for story-telling.

Today’s OED Word-of-the-Day is “Muggle,” as in, “Whoa! Look at all those Muggles queueing up! Wonder what they’re all waiting for!”

Muggle, n.4 : Oxford English Dictionary.

The OED defines Muggle as, “In the fiction of J. K. Rowling: a person who possesses no magical powers. Hence in allusive and extended uses: a person who lacks a particular skill or skills, or who is regarded as inferior in some way.”

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6 responses to “Muggle, n.4 : Oxford English Dictionary

  1. It’s interesting how words from fiction are sometimes adapted into the English language. I’m not sure, but I think Shakespeare in particular added a large number of words in that way.

    It’s nice to see that HP has made a permanent contribution to the OED, too! 😀

    • Yeah, the word “Muggle” quickly saturated the English-speaking world, didn’t it?

      There have been several Dilbert cartoons that make oblique references to the HP universe. It’s always quite funny just because of the recognition factor.

  2. It’s a great word I think, it has much charm, inviting to be used (were it not that I have not much use for it, as around me there appear to be Muggles only. Seems there is no need in my RL to acknowledge magical tendencies, or rather, lack there of; wish it were different though)

    • However, as the OED points out, people have started using it to refer to “a person who lacks a particular skill or skills, or who is regarded as inferior in some way.” So you still might be able to at least refer to some inept, untalented people that way — even if only in your own mind! 😉

      It is a fun word. Reminds me of “muddle” and “mug,” as in “ugly mug.”

  3. Muggle. Thanks for the new word. I’m going to have some fun using this one and I can’t even muggle it up!

  4. Nope, that you can’t! I thought it was neat that people are now using it in new ways to mean someone who’s less-than-competent! (And I hope people drop by your blog!)

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