Hodgepodge of Hippopotomonstrosesquipidelian Homeruns


hippoIf you are a lover of obnoxiously-long words, you already know the definition of hippopotomonstrosesquipidelian is “of or pertaining to extremely long words.” Perhaps you already know these English language monstrosities that probably won’t show up in a crossword puzzle any time soon:

  • honorificabilitudinitatibus (27 letters): The longest word used by William Shakespeare, as well as the longest word in English with alternating consonants and vowels, it refers to the state of being able to achieve honors.
  • floccinaucinihilipilification (29 letters): The categorizing of something as being worthless or trivial. This is also the longest word in the first edition of the Oxford English Dictionary.
  • hepaticocholangiocholecystenterostomies (37 letters): a surgical process to create a channel between the gall bladder and the hepatic duct or intestines.
  • pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosis (45 letters): The longest word in the second edition of the Oxford English Dictionary, this is the name given to a lung disease miners get from inhaling silicia.
  • asseocarnisanguineoviscericartilaginonervomedullary (51 letters): describes the structure of the entire human body
  • aequeosalinocalcalinosetaceoaluminosocupreovitriolic (52 letters): used to describe the spa waters at Bath, England.
  • bababadalgharaghtakamminarronnkonnbronntonnerronntuonnthunntrovarrhounawnskawn-toohoohoordenenthurnuk (101 letters): Used in James Joyce’s Finnegan’s Wake to represent the symbolic thunderclap following Adam and Eve’s fall.
  • methionylglutaminylarginyltyrosylglutamylserylleucylphenylalanyla-lanylglutaminylleucyllysylglutamylarginyllysylglutamylglycylalany-lphenylalanylvalylprolylphenylalanylvalylthreonylleucylglycylaspa-rtylprolylglycylisoleucylglutamylglutaminylserylleucyllysylisoleu-cylaspartylthreonylleucylisoleucylglutamylalanylglycylalanylaspar-tylalanylleucylglutamylleucylglycylisoleucylprolylphenylalanylser-laspartylprolylleucylalanylaspartylglycylprolylthreonyliso leucylglutaminylaspfraginylalanylthreonylleucylarginylalanylpheny-lalanylalanylalanylglycylvalylthreonylprolylalanylglutaminylcyste-inylphenylalanylglutamylmethionylleucylalanylleucylisoleucylargin-ylglutaminyllysylhistidylprolylthreonylisoleucylprolylisoleucylgl-ycylleucylleucylmethionyltyrosylalanylasparaginylleucylvalylpheny-lalanylasparaginyllysylglycylisoleucylaspartylglutamylphenylalany-ltyrosylalanylglutaminylcysteinylglutamyllysylvalylglycylva-lylaspartylserylvalylleucylvalylalanylaspartylvalylprolylvalylglu taminylglutamylserylalanylprolylphenylalanylarginylglutaminylalan-ylalanylleucylarginylhistidylasparaginylvalylalanylprolylisoleucy-lphenylalanylisoleucylcysteinylprolylprolylaspartylalanylaspartyl-aspartylaspartylleucylleucylarginylglutaminylisoleucylalanylseryl-tyrosylglycylarginylglycyltyrosylthreonyltyrosylleucylleucylseryl-arginylalanylglycylvalylthreonylglycylalanylglutamylasparag-inylarginylalanylalanylleucylprolylleucylasparaginylhistidylleucy-lvalylalanyllysylleucyllysylglutamyltyrosylasparaginylalanylalany- lprolylprolylleucylglutaminylglycylphenylalanylglycylisoleucylser-ylalanylprolylaspartylglutaminylvalyllysylalanylalanylisoleucylas-partylalanylglycylalanylalanylglycylalanylisoleucylserylglycylser-ylalanylisoleucylvalyllysylisoleucylisoleucylglutamylglutaminylhi-stidylasparaginylisoleucylglutamylprolylglutamyllysylmethio-nylleucylalanylalanylleucyllysylvalylphenylalanylvalylglutaminylp-rolylmethionyllysylalanylalanylthreonylarginylserine (1,913 letters): The full name of the tryptophan synthetase A protein, an enzyme with 267 amino acids.
  • the chemical name for titin is 189,819 letters long and takes three and a half hours to pronounce. To see the full name and to watch the 3.5-hour video of the name being pronounced, go here.
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