A few weeks ago, we reported that the word “dude” was about to go from the New Yorker lexicon to the Oxford English Dictionary.
That news got us thinking: Is this word a way of saying “dumbass?”
It turns out that the Oxford Dictionary doesn’t define it that way.
It does say that the term has come to be used in “a variety of contexts and uses.”
The New York Times’ Emily Greenfield writes that this “has been the norm for years in the American vernacular” and it “has also been used in other parts of the world, including Europe and South Africa.”
So if the Oxford dictionary has no definition of the word, where does that leave us?
So we decided to look up the Oxford dictionaries definition of dumbass.
Turns out that it does not include the word itself.
And that’s when we realized that we had the word in our lexicon.
But there was no dictionary definition of it.
So what we had to do was look for it.
Here are the Oxford definitions for the terms: “a person who is a failure or someone who is an idiot.”
“An incompetent person, a person who can’t function properly or is not able to do the job well.”
“Someone who is not intelligent or intelligently.
Also a failure.”
“A person who does not have a good sense of humor.”
“Any person who, due to lack of intelligence, lacks ability to distinguish truth from falsehood or is incapable of thinking logically.”
“an incompetent person who cannot function properly” and “a failure.”
That’s all it says.
There’s a long list of definitions, but none of them has the word dumbass in it.
That’s because we didn’t know where to look.
So we started digging.
The Oxford dictionary website has some other definitions, and the first thing we looked at was the term dumbass, which has a definition that sounds more like a noun than a verb.
But it’s not.
The definition says “the act of making a fool of oneself, a dumb act.”
That seems like a clear definition of what we’re looking for, but we didn.
So instead of going straight to Oxford, we checked other dictionaries.
We found some of the definitions for dumbass that we’d seen online.
We also checked Google.
And sure enough, there was a dictionary definition that didn’t have the word.
That was the Oxford definition.
So why didn’t we find the Oxford term?
Here’s what the Oxford website says: The Oxford Dictionary does not define “dud” in the dictionary, so we did not know what to call it.
However, Oxford’s website does have the term in its dictionary.
The dictionary has been using it since the mid-1930s, according to the definition.
And Oxford says the word has been used since 1873.
So the Oxford site is a bit old.
But what about the Oxford version of the New American Standard, the version that defines dumbass as “an inept person who lacks ability, ability, or competence”?
The definition on the Oxford page does have that word in it, but it doesn’t mention dumbass specifically.
So, we went to the dictionary to look for the definition, and it did not give us what we were looking for.
We called the Oxford Office, and they told us that they would look into it.
But that’s not how we found out about the dictionary definition.
Instead, they gave us a list of examples that they found online.
And while the definitions were the same, the terms are a little different.
For example, the definition of “dunk” on the dictionary site says “to have the legs of a donkey,” which sounds like a word for “dung pile.”
But in the Oxford article, “dummy” sounds like “dick,” which makes sense because “dumps” is the term for garbage in the United States.
“Dunk” also sounds like the word for junk, and that’s why the dictionary does not say “dumptruck.”
So we found a dictionary that did have the words in it: “dump truck.”
So what do these definitions mean?
Let’s go through them.
“a low-class person” is defined as “someone who is lazy, uncaring, uncivilized, uncultured, uneducated, ignorant, or uncouth.”
“a poor, unqualified person” isn’t a definition at all.
It’s a phrase used to describe someone who’s poor or unqualified.
“uneducated” is used to mean “poor,” but it’s used in a way that’s different from what the dictionary says.
“poor” is sometimes used to make an affirmative, like “I’m not poor, I’m not uneducated.”
“unqualified” is a little more specific, saying “someone with limited education or limited ability.”
So, when we say someone