11 Slang Terms You Think Are New But Are In Fact Ancient
Did you know they had hipsters in 1941?
1. "Hipster". New slang, right? You associate it with twentysomethings with skinny jeans and beards.
That’s because of a thing in linguistics called the “recency illusion”.
This is the impression that words you've recently heard are brand-spanking-new to the language, when in fact they're surprisingly old. (The term itself is, ironically, relatively recent: it was coined in 2005 by a linguist called Arnold Zwicky.)
It means we tend to think some new slang has just dropped from some teenager's mouth a few minutes ago. Usually, though, what we think of as some gleaming modern coinage is years, decades, or sometimes centuries old.