Sunday 18 May 2014

Strange Facts About Words

Some strange facts about words

There are two words in the English language that have all five vowels in order: "abstemious" and "facetious." 

There are only four words in the English language which end in "dous": tremendous, horrendous, stupendous, and hazardous.

"Dreamt" is the only English word that ends in the letters "mt".

No word in the English language rhymes with month,orange, silver, or purple.

The sentence: "The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog" 
uses every letter of the alphabet. 


Heteronyms are words that are spelled the same as another, but having a different sound and meaning.

     - The dragon wound the cloth around the wound on his leg.

     - He could still lead the knights if he could get the thick lead door opened.

     - Upon arrival, the royal dove dove through the window.
     - The royal carpenter built the door to close to the window—it would not close.

Homographs are words of like spelling but with more than one meaning. 

  - The prince, even in his present state, was to present the present to the princess (the 1st and 3rd "present" are the homographs; the 2nd "present" as to the 1st and 3rd "present" are heteronyms). 
  - The kingdom’s gardener was summoned to produce lots of produce, or else.

  The princess did not object to the shinny object the dragon brought her.
  -  Some of the soldiers got in a row as they tried to straighten the row.


Then there's the odd word up. Look it up in the dictionary. It is a two-letter word with the most meanings of any two-letter word:

Upon waking up, the princess looked up in the sky. The cloud art brought to mind a topic she must bring up to the royal councilman--she must speak up. Who would be up for election? And who would write up the royal reports? 

As she pondered, she decided to polish up the silverware and warm up spaghetti. Later, she cleaned up the mess before opening up the royal library. Deciding it was time to get dressed up for the ceremonies, she wondered if she was up for it. The whole deal would take up a lot of her time, but if she did not give up, she might wind up with a new role.

"Hmmm, it's clouding up outside." She closed up the shutters and wrapped up in her shawl.

                 I am one mixed up writer.

copyright, Diane Mae Robinson, 2014

For information on my dragon books for children:


  1. Wow. This is one great post. I might steal this one - I think it is called re-blogging. But there is no re-blog button between Blogger and Wordpress, so I might have to just steal it and plead no contest. This is truly one great post. I am a bit confused about the difference between homographs (I thought it was homophones?) and heteronyms. Some of the examples seem to fit either one. The present example: have different sounds and meanings (heteronyms) so why is it a homograph?

    Pree-sent, pre-sent

  2. Sure, you can re-post this one, or any of my posts. You are probably confused over this one: - The prince, even in his present state, was to present the present to the princess.- Technically, the first two "present" are heteronyms, and when you look at the last two "present", they are homographs. Are you confused now?

    1. Nope, now that makes sense and what I was trying to say. Will enjoy re-posting on next day I am without a post. Really busy, or trying to be, right now. I love the haiku/lantern review. The comments were a lot of fun. I was surprised by who did not take part. I thought a challenge would have all writers joining in, not just making a comment. I wish "heylookawriterfellow" would have written one. He is a funny guy.

      Sorry, off target. Thanks for the open theft permit.

    2. You always have an open permit with me. Did you read my Haiku--obviously not or you would have had a, "Oh really!" comment for me. I'm glad it makes sense now, and thanks for pointing out that it didn't make sense so I could go make more sense of it,