Finally, the real truth about letters N through Z

There are 66,500 words in my desk dictionary. They are constructed, obviously, from the 26 letters of the English alphabet. Interestingly, if you use just the thirteen letters in the last half of the alphabet, N through Z, you may be as surprised as I was to find you can only make 173 words, or .002% of the total words we have. I am not going to list the words here, but they run, alphabetically, from “No” to “Zoot.”

Does this mean the other 99.998% of words come from the first half of the alphabet? No. The majority of English words include letters from both the first and second half of the alphabet. In this posting, for example, there are 149 words; 104, or 70%, use letters from both halves of the alphabet.

I didn’t do an electronic search; I just used words I knew and then kind of skimmed the dictionary.

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One Comment on “Finally, the real truth about letters N through Z”

  1. Frank Paolo Says:

    Thank you for all your hard work, Rich.


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