'Legacy' conundrum for Countdown star

Susie Dent suggests using humour or simpler words to make inheritance giving more popular

Countdown 'word guru' Susie Dent has teamed up with charity consortium Remember a Charity to find alternative words for 'legacy' after research showed the term was viewed negatively by the public.

Lexicographer Dent is the most recognisable face from the 'dictionary corner' of the Channel 4 word and numbers-based quiz show. She is helping the charity after research revealed that 'legacy' was largely perceived by the public as being linked to wealth, celebrity and eccentricity and was discouraging people from giving.

"Perhaps a tongue-in-cheek coinage such as 'inshareitance' would get people talking, while simpler nouns such as 'gift' or 'lifeline' might sound more encouraging and straightforward," said Dent. A humorous term such as 'pay as you go' might also raise a smile, she added.

Dent will be encouraging public debate through magazine and radio interviews over the coming weeks.

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