Curiosities about the English language / Curiosidades da língua inglesa

I received, today, one more of those uncountable emails that we receive daily from friends, acquaintances, or even strangers. The message was forwarded, thus I don’t know who is the author of the curiosities that we find there, but I’ll post it here, anyway (the part that refers to some curiosities about the English language).

Recebi, hoje mais um daqueles inúmeros emails que recebemos diariamente de amigos, conhecidos ou, mesmo, de desconhecidos. O email foi repassado, daí fico sem saber de quem é a autoria das curiosidades ali listadas, mas vou postar aqui, assim mesmo, a parte que se refere a algumas curiosidades da língua inglesa.

The message’s title is… / O título da mensagem é…


Stewardesses is the longest word typed with only the left hand and lollipop with your right. / Stewardesses é a palavra mais longa [da língua inglesa] digitada com a mão esquerda, apenas, e lollipop, com a mão direita.

No word in the English language rhymes with month, orange, silver, or purple. / Nenhuma palavra na língua inglesa rima com month, orange, silver ou purple.

Dreamt is the only English word that ends en the letters “mt”. / Dreamt é a única palavra inglesa que termina com as letras “mt”.

Typewriter is the longest word that can be made using the letters only on one row of the keyboard. (All you typists are going to test this out.) / Typewriter é a palavra mais longa [da língua inglesa] que pode ser composta usando-se apenas letras de uma mesma fileira do teclado. (Todos vocês, datilógrafos, vão testar esta.)

The sentence: The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog uses every letter of the alphabet. (Now, you KNOW you’re going to try this out for accuracy, right?) / A frase: The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog usa cada uma das letras do alfabeto [inglês]. Agora você SABE que vai tentar verificar se isso é verdade, correto?)

The words racecar, kayak and level are the same whether they are read left to right or right to left (palindromes). Yep, I knew you were going to “do” this one.) / As palavras racecar, kayak e level são as mesmas lidas da esquerda para a direita ou da direita para a esquerda (palíndromes). (Sim, eu sabia que você ia testar esta.)

There are two words in the English language that have all five vowels in order: abstemious and facetious. (Yes, admit it, you were going to say a e i o u.) / Existem duas palavras na língua inglesa que têm as cinco vogais em ordem: abstemious and facetious. (Sim, admita, você vai dizer a e i o u.)

The longest technical word in the English language is / A palavra técnica mais longa em inglês é:


The longest nontechnichal word in the English language is / A palavra não técnica mais longa em inglës é:


More reasons why English is so hard to learn:

1) The bandage was wound around the wound.
2) The farm was used to produce produce.
3) The dump was so full that it had to refuse more refuse.
4) We must polish the Polish furniture.
5) He could lead if he would get the lead out.
6) The soldier decided to desert his dessert in the desert.
7) Since there is no time like the present, he thought it was time to present the present.
8) A bass was painted on the head of the bass drum.
9) When shot at, the dove dove into the bushes.
10) I did not object to the object.
11) The insurance was invalid for the invalid.
12) There was a row among the oarsmen about how to row.
13) They were too close to the door to close it.
14) The buck does funny things when the does are present.
15) A seamstress and a sewer fell down into a sewer line.
16) To help with planting, the farmer taught his sow to sow.
17) The wind was too strong to wind the sail.
18) After a number of injections my jaw got number.
19) Upon seeing the tear in the painting I shed a tear.
20) I had to subject the subject to a series of tests.
21) How can I intimate this to my most intimate friend?
22) I want it to be on record that I will record my Record.

There is no egg in eggplant nor ham in hamburger; neither apple nor pine in pineapple.

English muffins weren’t invented in England or French fries in France.

Sweetmeats are candies while sweetbreads, which aren’t sweet, are meat.

Quicksand works slowly, boxing rings are square and a guinea pig is neither from Guinea nor is it a pig.

And why is it that writers write but fingers don’t fing, grocers don’t groce and hammers don’t ham?

If the plural of tooth is teeth, why isn’t the plural of booth beeth?

One goose, 2 geese. So one moose, 2 meese?

Doesn’t it seem crazy that you can make amends but not one amend.

If you have a bunch of odds and ends and get rid of all but one of them, what do you call it? Is it an odd, or an end?

If teachers taught, why didn’t preachers praught?

If a vegetarian eats vegetables, what does a humanitarian eat?

In what language do people recite at a play and play at a recital?

Ship by truck and send cargo by ship?

Have noses that run and feet that smell?

How can a slim chance and a fat chance be the same, while a wise man and a wise guy are opposites?

You have to marvel at the unique lunacy of a language in which your house can burn up as it burns down, in which you fill in a form by filling it out and in which, an alarm goes off by going on.

English was invented by people, not computers, and it reflects the creativity of the human race, which, of course,
is not a race at all.

That is why, when the stars are out, they are visible, but when the lights are out, they are

English Letter Frequency (based on a sample of 40,000 words)


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