Why No One Will Ever Completely Master the English Language


Ahead of this year’s Scripps National Spelling Bee, Business Insider published this list of the twelve most difficult winning words in the history of the contest. No doubt, the selections have become somewhat arbitrary: that is, I am certain that there are some equally obscure and difficult alternatives available from other years.

2011: cymotrichous (adj.) — having wavy hair.

2009: Laodician (adj.) — lukewarm or indifferent in religion or politics.

2004: autochthonous (adj.) — formed or originating in the place where found, native.

2002: prospicience (noun) — the act of looking forward, foresight.

1999: logorrhea (adj.) — excessive and often incoherent talkativeness or wordiness.

1997: euonym (noun) — a name well suited to the person, place, or thing named.

1996:  vivisepulture (noun) — the act or practice of burying alive.

1986: odontalgia (noun) — toothache.

1980: elucubrate (verb) — to solve, write or compose by working studiously at night.

1962:  esquamulose (adj.) — Not covered in scales, or of scale like objects, a smooth skin.

1961: smaragdine (adj.) — Of or…

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