Sherlock makes the dictionary in new definition of ‘ship’

Actress Louise Brealey tweets her excitement as her character Molly and Benedict Cumberbatch’s Sherlock enter the Oxford Dictionaries Online

Sherlock stars Benedict Cumberbatch and Louise Brealey have made it into the dictionary.


Brealey, who plays Molly in the BBC1 drama, and Cumberbatch’s Sherlock are being used by Oxford Dictionaries Online as an example to define a new word for falling in love: ship.

Yes, ‘ship’. No longer is it just a seafaring vessel, or a method of moving stuff around. Oh, no. It’s now officially a way of saying you want someone to become romantically involved.

Brealey tweets

Oxford Dictionaries explains: “Ship was originally an abbreviation of relationship, and refers to a romantic relationship between two characters in a fictional series – often one that is supported by fans rather than depicted in the series itself.

“Those who have a particular interest in a particular ship are known as shippers, which is another word entering Oxford Dictionaries Online in this update. Support for one of these relationships is described by the verb ship – for example, ‘I will always ship Sherlock and Molly’.”

Clearly wanting to share in the excitement with her co-star, Brealey said she was going to text Benedict – and then retire.