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Fiat Luxicon

The Fiat Luxicon has been completed! Thank you so much to everyone who made a submission. Click here to view our 150 new words!

In celebration of Berkeley’s 150th birthday and in the spirit of Fiat Lux, we are calling all Golden Bears to light up our linguistic landscape. Join us in creating a Fiat Luxicon: 150 new words that reflect Cal’s legacy of ingenuity and creativity! We’re asking faculty, staff, and students to submit original words that enhance our human language library. Through this initiaffair, we seek to celebrate the tradition of innovation that unites our global campus community. The first 150 entries that meet the criteria below will have their word added to our Fiat Luxicon installation in the VèVè Writing Lounge.



A new word of your own creation! The word must be original and can be in any language. It cannot exist in the dictionary or vernaculars of the language you seek to enhance.


In creating your word, consider:

✔ Combining existing words from any language;

✔ Translating a concept that currently has no equivalent in your language;

✔ Making a completely new word from scratch!

✔ See more ideas here and here.

Part of Speech:

A noun, verb, adjective, or adverb. Your word must not be an onomatopoeia or proper noun. Click here for more information on the parts of speech.



A guide for how to say your word written in the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA). See this resource for more information about IPA and pronunciation.



A concise and clear explanation of what the word means.



An explanation of how you created your word. To learn more about etymology and see examples, click here and here.


Example Sentence:

One to two sample sentences using your word.

Entries must:

✔ Be original;

✔ Be creative;

✔ Enhance our understanding of a phenomena, feeling, or idea.



Initiaffair (n)

Part of Speech: Noun

Pronunciation: i-ˈni-shə-ˈfer


1. A project or endeavor by two parties that stems from, sparks, or solidifies a shared interest or passion

2. A celebration of shared values and interests

Etymology: A lovechild of the words "initiative" and "affair," initiaffair--like its parents--has origins in Latin and bears traces of Anglo-French and Middle English.

Example Sentence: To mark Cal's 150th birthday, the Language Exchange Program and the Writing Program organized an initiaffair that included a new word contest, tapping Cal's spirit of playfulness and ingenuity to create a Berkeley vocabulary, the Fiat Luxicon.