In the past year, the word has been used in an array of contexts — relationships, cultures and even politicians.
From the poisoning of the former Russian agent Sergei Skripal in Salisbury to toxic workplace environments and the spread of toxic waste in the wake of natural disasters — there has been a 45% rise in the number of times the word was searched on oxforddictionaries.com.
I kid you not, @BritneySpears was ahead of her time.#WordOfTheYear pic.twitter.com/QSASo89Ypb— τЂiś•iś•śЂäЂid ®شاھد (@this_is_shahid) November 15, 2018
November 14, 2018
You people chose the word of the year on November 14, when there were 47 days left in the year? 🙄— (((Greg A.))) (@Greg_A_) November 15, 2018
I need a detox.— Keith J Fernandez (@withazed) November 14, 2018
Britney knew. pic.twitter.com/ugADQ54vXN— Adam Gaylord 🤖 (@AuthorGaylord) November 15, 2018
Among the runner-up words that almost made the cut were ‘gaslighting,' ‘cakeism,' and ‘big dick energy.'
Though 'toxic' took the #OxfordWOTY title, it's by no means the only word that caught our attention this year. Find out about the words that made our shortlist at the Word of the Year hub: https://t.co/ulAkRigNlR pic.twitter.com/itJENyr0JK— Oxford Dictionaries (@OxfordWords) November 15, 2018