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Top 10 Most Garbage Words Ever

Updated on January 3, 2016
Bernadette Harris profile image

Bernadette is a proofreader, online blogger, and freelance writer. She graduated from Franciscan University with a B.A. in Literature.

Greetings fellow book nerds, bloggers, and idle internet wanderers. This post is a nice little break from last week’s pleasant discussion of murder and familial dysfunction. But never fear; it is sure to bring you just as much food for thought.

While I will not be exploring the tortuous human condition through various forms of literature, I will be exploring a different kind of torture today, the kind brought to us by the sick and twisted labyrinth that we know as the freaking dictionary. Or just, you know, language.

Listed below for your viewing pleasure are the top 10 most useless wastes of letters and space to ever be conceived by mankind. They will enable you to find new ways to spice up the conversation and lose all your friends.


Pretentiousness, Ho!

10) Pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanokoniosis

This may look like someone just fell asleep on the keyboard, but it’s an actual word that pertains to a specific lung disease. Can you imagine being diagnosed with this? If it doesn’t actually kill you, I’m pretty sure you’d be dead anyway by the time the doctor finished pronouncing it.

(9) Hippopotomonstrosesquipedalian

This is a word defined as a word that has been coined to make a very long word. Now they’re just screwing with us. I wonder what jackass thought this one up?

(8) Floccinaucinihilipilification

This 29-letter bad boy is defined as the estimation of something worthless. Much like its own existence.

(7) Moribund

Though hardly the most unusual word on this list, I’ve included it here because it sounds like a reference to some kind of delicious pastry, which gives me infinite amounts of delight. Strictly speaking, this term means obsolete, approaching death, or being in a state of “inactivity.” Basically if this word is ever applied to you, call a priest or your mamma ‘cuz it’s pretty much all over.

(6) Eleemosynary

This means charitable. So you should just the word “charitable.”

(5) Coruscating

Refers to something brilliant, which is the exact opposite of 90% of this bullcrap we call the English language.

(4) Autochthonous

This means indigenous or native, much like the feelings of hatred that arise within me whenever I read words that are barely pronounceable.

(3) Sprezzatura

Studied nonchalance, an important skill to master when reading lists of excessively long words.

(2) Aggrandizement

Enlargement or extension. Insert dirty pun here.

(1) And the number one most ridiculous word ever is 189, 819 letters, so I’m afraid I can’t actually spell it out for you here. However, here’s a link to a three hour video of a guy pronouncing it. Watch it because you know you have nothing better to do for three hours (certainly not live life or anything):

Sources (a.k.a., others like myself who dwell in isolation and prefer to spend their time looking up things that are most likely to annoy other people on the internet):


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    • Robert Levine profile image

      Robert Levine 2 years ago from Brookline, Massachusetts

      Number 10 is the medical name for Black Lung.

      Number 6 appears often, for some reason, in the 18th Century novel Tom Jones, by Henry Fielding.

    • KoffeeKlatch Gals profile image

      Susan Haze 2 years ago from Sunny Florida

      Funny stuff. I wonder if there is anyone in this world who actuals uses these words.

    • Twilight Lawns profile image

      Twilight Lawns 2 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K.

      Bernadette Harris

      Why are you whining about some of these words and saying negative things about our beautiful language?

      I agree completely with your thoughts about ridiculously complex words created to obfuscate, but perhaps there is a valid reason for the creation of technical words such as Pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanokoniosis. Not being a medical practitioner, I have no need to use it, but put my trust in those who would.

      Sprezzatura shouldn’t even be in your list of “Top 10 Most Ridiculous Words Language Has To Offer”, as it is an Italian word. We use it, if we need to, but are you aware that there are other countries in the world that have their own languages. Italy happens to be one, and the people there are known to speak a language known as Italian (although I am sure you know that the national language of that country happens to be Tuscan (la lingua Toscana - thanks to Dante Alighieri).

      We also “borrow” certain words from other languages, such as theatre, centre, bungalow and khaki, although the English, when doing so, tend not to bastardise those words so much as out cousins across the Pond.

      Moribund is a word that is in common usage in the country.

      By the way, are you aware that the person shown, William Shakespeare, by name, made up words for his own uses... so not a good example to hold up before us.

    • alancaster149 profile image

      Alan R Lancaster 2 years ago from Forest Gate, London E7, U K (ex-pat Yorkshire)

      Plough through a few newspaper articles or features pages (aside from the football or other sports pages) and 'self-aggrandisement' crops up a lot. Not the actual word itself, but some of the columnists who think they've got to dazzle the reader with their vocabulary.

      Self-aggrandisement/aggrandizement is a sort of sickness contracted by 'them what thinks they're sumfink speshul' when 'on the up'. Symptoms are: showing off your education, pretending to be someone you're not, aka 'upwardly mobile' ('Yuppy' = young upwardly mobile person).

      Sometimes it affects older people who've been pretending all their lives and can't shake it.

    • lambservant profile image

      Lori Colbo 2 years ago from Pacific Northwest

      This was funny. I wrote a hub some time ago about my frustration with learning grammar - specifically the nine types of pronouns. We writers love words, but there is a limit. Nice work.

    • Bernadette Harris profile image

      Book Bug 2 years ago

      I'm all for shortening words. I can't even pronounce half of what's on this list. So good for the Aussies, I say. Thanks for stopping by, Jodah!

    • Jodah profile image

      John Hansen 2 years ago from Queensland Australia

      A wonderful, if slightly tongue in cheek, look at the English language. I have friends who have been here for over 30 years and still can't talk proper, then again I know some born here that can't. At least us Aussies like to shorten all our words to make them easier..some of those you highlight are downright scary. Voted up.

    • BruceDPrice profile image

      Bruce Deitrick Price 2 years ago from Virginia Beach, Va.

      Ah, the glory of the English language. The only language with a thesaurus. The only language with 10 words or ways to say everything. The only language that no one can ever fully master. The only language that has taken words from every other significant language on the planet. So what if we have to put up with the occasional pissant pettifogger.