In his book “On Creating: A Memoir of the Craft,” Stephen King delivers this great advice: “One of the genuinely terrible points you can do to your crafting is to costume up the vocabulary wanting for very long text mainly because you’re maybe a small bit ashamed of your limited types. This is like dressing up a home pet in night dresses. The pet is embarrassed and the person who fully commited this act of premeditated cuteness should be even more ashamed.”

You guessed it, this 7 days we’re likely to take a search at some of the for a longer time phrases in the English language, what they imply and whether they’re text we can actually use or just coined phrases or kinds applied in professional medical or technological fields.

In the way of housekeeping, I’m not heading to be inspecting the longest words in the environment — if you want these, there’s one particular on the online that has one thing like 180,000 letters and requires about 3 hours to pronounce.

At 45 letters, pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosis, a medical condition that effects from the inhalation of extremely fine silicate or quartz dust, is the longest term that can be identified in some typical dictionaries. It is also recognised as silicosis.

Coming in a fairly distant 2nd at 36 letters is hippopotomonstrosesquipedaliophobia, a coined phrase for the panic of very long phrases.

Also earning the podium is supercalifragilisticexpialidocious (34), which is referred to as a appropriate noun in some dictionaries. It is a coined nonsense phrase from the 1964 movie “Mary Poppins” that is applied to express approval for a little something. Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious does not appear in P.L. Travers’ 1934 book on which the movie was centered. It also happens to be the initial genuinely significant word in this column that the spellchecker in my personal computer acknowledges as remaining real.

Antidisestablishmentarianism (28), opposition to withdrawing govt aid of a individual church or faith, and floccinaucinihilipilification (29), the estimation of a little something as worthless, are a pair of worthy also-rans. (Floccinaucinihilipilification’s value might be in issue however, given that it’s virtually in no way used besides as an case in point of a prolonged word.)

The longest word in Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary is electroencephelographically (27), which is a thing carried out using an  electroencephalogram (EEG).

Also that contains 27 letters is honorificabilitudinitatibus, a phrase uttered by Costard in William Shakespeare’s “Love’s Labour’s Lost.” Referring to the state of currently being capable to reach honors, honorificabilitudinitatibus is something which is recognized as a “hapax legomenon,” which means that the Bard made use of it only at the time in his complete system of do the job. It also comes about to be the longest English word that’s designed up of alternating consonants and vowels.

In accordance to wags on the internet, 5 big words that we’re basically probable to experience are: counterrevolutionaries (22), deinstitutionalization (22), incomprehensibilities (21), uncharacteristically (20), and unimaginatively (18). At very last, with some normalcy.

Coming in at 20 letters, but not a word we’re possible to come upon exterior of this column, is Llanfairpwllgwyngyll, a city in northwest Wales. At some stage, the townspeople resolved to increase a different 38 letters to the name (producing it Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrolwllllantysiliogogogoch), so it could have the longest name of any position in Fantastic Britain.

The runt of the litter, weighing in at a mere 16 letters, is sesquipedalianism, which is the inclination to use very long words and phrases.

That is a brief glimpse at very long words and phrases hopefully I didn’t embarrass myself.

Jim Witherell of Lewiston is a author and lover of text whose operate involves “L.L. Bean: The Male and His Company” and “Ed Muskie: Created in Maine.”

Use the type down below to reset your password. When you’ve submitted your account e-mail, we will send an electronic mail with a reset code.

« Former

Subsequent »