2023 has got 'rizz': Oxford announces the Word of the Year

In the year of creative language like "Barbenheimer," "Swiftie" and "yeet," one word has risen to the top as the word that captures 2023.

The Oxford University Press announced Monday the 2023 Word of the Year is "rizz."

A slang word popularized by social media, rizz was chosen from a pool of eight words by language experts with input from the public.

"Given that last year, ‘goblin mode’ resonated with so many of us after the pandemic, it’s interesting to see a contrasting word like rizz come to the forefront, perhaps speaking to a prevailing mood of 2023, where more of us are opening ourselves up after a challenging few years and finding confidence in who we are," president of Oxford Languages Casper Grathwohl said in a press release.

Here is what to know about rizz and some other words that were in the running for the Oxford Word of the Year 2023.

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What does 'rizz' mean?

"Rizz" is believed to be short for "charisma," describing one's ability to flirt and attract someone romantically. It can be used as a noun or a verb, depending on the context.

To rizz is someone is to attract or seduce them, Oxford defines.

To have rizz is to have the ability to charm others through communicating.

YouTube personality and Twitch streamer Kai Cenat is credited with popularizing the word before it caught fire on TikTok.

Kai Cenat arrives at the Streamy Awards on Sunday, Aug. 27, 2023, at the Fairmont Century Plaza Hotel in Los Angeles.
Kai Cenat arrives at the Streamy Awards on Sunday, Aug. 27, 2023, at the Fairmont Century Plaza Hotel in Los Angeles.

What words were considered for the Oxford Word of the Year 2023?

Eight words were put forward by Oxford language experts as contenders for the 2023 Word of the Year. The words reflected "the mood, ethos, or preoccupations of the year," according to the release.

Those words went head-to-head for public voting to leave just four top contenders.

Here were all of the finalists and the words they beat:

  • "Swiftie" won against "de-influencing"

  • "Rizz" won against "beige flag"

  • "Situationship" won against "parasocial"

  • "Prompt" won against "heat dome"

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What does Tom Holland have to do with rizz?

"‘I have no rizz whatsoever, I have limited rizz," actor Tom Holland said in an interview with BuzzFeed in June.

Oxford said that usage of the word rizz spiked in popularity shortly after this interview.

"My brother Paddy has ultimate rizz," Holland said when asked for the secret to his rizz. "I need you to fall in love with me really for it work..."

"Long game, probably making a moving together, definitely helps when the characters your playing are falling in love with one another," he said referencing his "Spider-Man" movies with his now partner Zendaya. "You can sort of blur the lines a little bit. That's kind of where my rizz is at."

Contributing: Olivia Munson, Anthony Robledo

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Oxford Word of the Year 2023 is 'rizz': What does that mean?