Honorificabilitudinitatibus

What do you think people? Can we bring this one back?

Listening to The Adventure of English: The Biography of a Language by Melvyn Bragg a few days ago, the author mentioned honorificabilitudinitatibus as the longest work used in a Shakespearean play. Well, I was hooked. I just had to look it up. [Good book, by the way. Highly recommended for word nerds.]

Turns out [according to Wikipedia and a host of other web resources], honorificabilitudinitatibus is the plural of an almost-as-long Latin word and means something like “the state of being able to achieve honours.” It also just happens to be the longest word in the English language that alternates vowels and consonants.

Need some help wrapping your mouth around that?

Now personally, I love it. But I can’t help but wonder what disastrous results trying to use it in my everyday vocabulary would have on my social status.

Author

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: