Kwaussie named word of the year in Australia

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The term “kwaussie” – a hybrid of Kiwi and Aussie – has been named Australia’s word of the year.

The word has been used this year through the nation’s dual citizenship political saga, said the Australian National Dictionary Centre.

The word describes a person who is a dual citizen of Australia and New Zealand – as was the case with Australia’s deputy prime minister, Barnaby Joyce.

The term kwaussie was first used to describe actor Russell Crowe.

Although popularised by the political saga, the word can also refer to a New Zealander living in Australia, or a person of Australian and New Zealand descent.

This type of word is known as a portmanteau and comes about when two words and meanings are blended together, for example, motel or brunch.

Famous Kwaussies
Russell Crowe: The first usage of kwaussie was found in a 2002 profile of the New Zealand-born actor, a long-time resident of Australia.

Keith Urban: The country music star was born in New Zealand but established his success in Australia, before making it big in Nashville.

Jane Campion: The Oscar-winning director of The Piano and Top of the Lake was born in New Zealand but studied in Australia, where she has also found success.

Barnaby Joyce: Australia’s deputy prime minister was disqualified from office after a court ruled he was a New Zealand national by descent.

In November, dictionary publisher Collins chose the phrase “fake news” as its word of the year.

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