A short post on the longest words


I’ve been working on some lengthier articles, but meanwhile, here’s an entertaining read (particularly for word nerds): The Longest Word in the World.

In it, you’ll find the longest words in multiple languages (Dutch, German, English, Icelandic, Tagalog, and more), replete with audio pronunciations of many of them. This piece explains the rules of how a word can qualify as “the longest word” (it’s not just about length!). It also touches on the subject of agglutinative languages that naturally have longer words due to compounding (see also #6 here).


A few samples:

  • ENGLISH: Electroencephalographically
    • 27 letters!
    • Meaning: Describes a method for measuring and recording the electrical activity of someone’s brain
  • GERMAN: Rindfleischetikettierungsüberwachungsaufgabenübertragungsgesetz
    • 63 letters!
    • Meaning: “law for regulating the labeling of beef”
  • TAGALOG: pinakanakakapagngitngitngitngitangpagsisinungasinungalingan
    • 59 letters!
    • Meaning: “lying that causes the most extreme anger”


Take a gander at the full piece for more tongue-bending terms.


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