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What Are the Longest English Words Without Any Repeated Letters?

Updated May 16, 2024
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With so many words in the English language (around 170,000 in current use, according to the Oxford English Dictionary), you’re bound to encounter something unique about many of them. For example, did you know that there are no words in the English language that rhyme perfectly with “orange,” “purple,” “silver,” "circle," "month," or "pint"? As with other languages, English contains countless words that are notable for one reason or another. Besides rhyming, there are many words that have unique attributes related to spelling, length, letter patterns, and pronunciation.

For example, a heterogram (sometimes known as an isogram or a nonpattern word) is a word, sentence, or phrase in which the letters of the alphabet are only used once. Many linguists have identified “uncopyrightable” and “dermatoglyphics” as the longest single-word heterograms in the English language.

In each of these 15-letter words, no letter of the alphabet appears more than once. "Hydropneumatics" and "misconjugatedly" also have 15 unique letters, while "uncopyrightables" has 16 letters and "subdermatoglyphic" has 17 letters, though these are not entirely agreed upon as real words.

Some authors have created pangrams that use every letter of the alphabet only once. This is commonly seen in sentences such as the well-known "The quick brown fox jumped over the lazy dog," though there are no accepted single-word pangrams.

Wacky words:

  • In his novel Finnegans Wake, James Joyce invented nine 100-letter words and one 101-letter word.

  • At 45 letters long, "pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosis" is noted as being the longest word in any of the major English dictionaries. The word refers to a type of lung disease similar to silicosis.

  • Robert and Richard Sherman invented the word “supercalifragilisticexpialidocious,” used as the title of a song in the movie Mary Poppins. While the words appears in several dictionaries, it appears as a proper noun in reference to the song title.

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