The Oxford English Dictionary (OED) calls itself “the definitive record of the English Language.” Unlike standard dictonaries, which have current meanings and spellings of words, the OED is a historical dictionary. The OED defines current words, but also traces the history of words through real examples. Think quotes and examples (3 million in all) from literature to film to cookbooks.
The print version of OED is a huge text (20 volumes) and has its own shelf and stand in the library. The OED recently launched an online version.
Every three months the OED reveals its revisions, which may include new words, new useage, or new examples.
Some surprising new entries:
LOL, int. and n., Originally and chiefly in the language of electronic communications: ‘ha ha!’; used to draw attention to a joke or humorous statement, or to express amusement
OMG, int. (and n.) Expressing astonishment, excitement, embarrassment, etc.: ‘oh my God!’
muffin top, n,: slang. A roll of flesh which hangs visibly over a person’s (esp. a woman’s) tight-fitting waistband.