According to Global Language Monitor, around 5,400 new words are created every year (Oxford Dictionaries Online, evidently using different criteria, reckon 1.8bn). It’s only the 1,000 or so deemed to be in sufficiently widespread use that make it into print. Who invents these words, and how? What rules govern their formation? And what determines whether they catch on?
Shakespeare is often held up as a master neologist, because at least 500 words (including bump, cranny, fitful, lacklustre and pedant) first appear in his works – but we have no way of knowing whether he personally invented them or was just transcribing things he’d picked up elsewhere. More.
See: The Guardian