Wordsmiths in Tamil interested in forging new words in the language for contemporary usage can now mail in their creations and also get an award if their words are approved by an expert committee.

University of Madras Vice-Chancellor G. Thiruvasagam said the university was creating a “Word Corpus” as part of its efforts to broaden the scope of the language to include contemporary terms.

“Anybody can mail in their words to tamilwordcorpus.unom@gmail.com. Every year, the words sent to the mail address will be collected and reviewed by an expert committee and an award will be given to those sending in the most number of such words.” The university has been working on updating the Tamil lexicon published by S. Vaiyapuri Pillai in 1956. Dr. Thiruvasagam said a review committee had looked at the work in progress and the first volume of the lexicon would be ready by December. A dictionary project was undertaken by the university to revise the voluminous English-Tamil dictionary edited by A. Chidambaranatha Chettiar published in 1965. The dictionary would also be published in December.

Dr. Thiruvasagam said the university would place both the lexicon and the dictionary as and when they came out on the internet. This would help students and those interested in the language access them freely, he said.