Number of Words in the English Language: 1,009,614 (2011)

Number of Words in the English Language: 1,009,614

Published: March 25th, 2011

This is the estimate by the Global Language Monitor on March 21, 2011.

The English Language passed the Million Word threshold on June 10, 2009, at 10:22 a.m. (GMT). ??The Millionth Word was controversial Web 2.0.  Currently, there is a new word created every 98 minutes or about 14.7 words per day.

Google Validates GLM?s No. of Words English Prediction

Source: Jean-Baptise Michel/AAAS/Science

Though GLM’s analysis was the subject of much controversy at the time, the recent Google/Harvard Study of the Current Number of Words in the English Language is 1,022,000.

The above graphic is from the AAAS /Science as reported on NPR. At the time the ??New York Times article on the historic threshold famously quoted several dissenting linguists as claiming that even Google could not come up with such a methodology. Unbeknownst to them, Google was doing precisely that.

The number of words in the English language according to GLM now stands at 1,009,614. The difference between the two analyses is .0121%, which is widely considered statistically insignificant.

Google’s number, which is based on the counting of the words in the 15,000,000 English language books it has scanned into the Google Corpus mirrors GLM’s Analysis. GLM’s number is based upon its algorithmic methodologies, explication of which is available from its site.

GLM/Google vs OED and Websters 3rd


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