Definition of nonce word in English:

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nonce word


A word coined for one single occasion only: English bristles with nonce words
More example sentences
  • One researcher thinks that didgeridoo may be an Irish coinage, a nonce word like boogaloo or dingaling.
  • Here's a list of nonce words in my colourful vocabulary that have not yet found their way into any dictionary.
  • Another sort of punning found in newspapers is the allusive re-using of nonce words from slogans.


Late 19th century: from nonce1 + word.

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