17
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For instance,

banana, excess, giggit, voodoo, pullup, myrrhy

are six six-letter words that don’t share any letters with each other. This isn’t a heterogram puzzle: repeated letters within a single word are fine. Can anyone find a larger set, or a set of longer words?

Full disclosure: this list may be used to cheat at Hangman. With this particular list, you can always claim that your opponent guessed wrong a minimum of five times in a row, though if you try this more than once on the same person they’ll probably make you write your word down somewhere first. Or just stop playing Hangman with you.

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8
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ Welcome to Puzzling! What's your definition of a "word"? Are proper nouns allowed? Are contractions, variant spellings, regional words, etc. allowed? Without a word list this question isn't really defined enough; could you provide a list/link of words considered acceptable? $\endgroup$
    – bobble
    Dec 18, 2020 at 18:00
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    $\begingroup$ Would a longer set of shorter words (eg, 7 three-letter words) be "better" than your example, or vice versa (four seven-letter words), or does it need to be better in both regards? $\endgroup$ Dec 18, 2020 at 18:07
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    $\begingroup$ Seems very open-ended: giggit and pullup (as a single word) are not in Lexico or Merriam-Webster. $\endgroup$ Dec 18, 2020 at 20:35
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    $\begingroup$ I agree with @WeatherVane. Need to define which dictionary to use for these type of puzzles $\endgroup$
    – DrD
    Dec 18, 2020 at 20:56
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    $\begingroup$ Technically, each individual letter appears with a dictionary entry, so the puzzle should probably have a minimum word length. $\endgroup$ Dec 18, 2020 at 21:23

6 Answers 6

6
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My word list is a little looser, but all words can be found in the Hasbro Scrabble Dictionary.

9 four letter words:

brrr*
cwms
deed
haha
juju
kook
lynx
pfft*
zizz*

I have * by words not found in Merriam-Webster. Also note that:

haha isn't in Merriam-Webster, but ha-ha is, which is the word Scrabble is using.

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5
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Here are seven five-letter words (all in Merriam-Webster)

crwth, xylyl, kudzu, igigi, peeve, boffo, amass

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1
  • $\begingroup$ Wow, I was going scrabble, so this is certainly better, although I'm hoping for 9 $\endgroup$ Dec 18, 2020 at 21:45
5
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Six 7-letter

boombox hallway prepped tsktsks unungun vivific

Five 8-letter

agaragar infinity levelled poohpooh succumbs

Four 9-letter

highlight knockdown queuejump sassafras

Four 10-letter

chachalaca divinizing pussyfoots rememberer

Not always in the "right" dictionaries.

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3
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Hopefully this works...

This is four letter words: myth, gull, reef, book, jinx, ppap, wdwd.

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    $\begingroup$ I may delete it anytime is this can’t work. $\endgroup$
    – AntsPiano
    Dec 18, 2020 at 18:58
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    $\begingroup$ Whether your last two "words" work depend on how the OP defines "word" $\endgroup$
    – bobble
    Dec 18, 2020 at 19:17
2
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There are 9 words in this set of 3-letter words. I used the Merriam Webster Scrabble Dictionary.

zzz tsk pop nun myc grr ewe bib aah

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  • $\begingroup$ Note that rot13 "ol erzbivat zlp naq ercynpvat vg jvgu zzz naq syl, lbh pna trg 10 jbeqf" $\endgroup$ Dec 19, 2020 at 15:20
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    $\begingroup$ 10 is optimal for 3-letter words in that dictionary: aah bee coo did fly grr mmm nun pst zzz $\endgroup$
    – RobPratt
    Dec 20, 2020 at 18:58
1
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8 2-letter words from the Scrabble dictionary:

aa
mm
sh
qi
ex
ow
by
nu

There's some flexibility in which 2-letter words you use, so you could steal some longer words from other answers that don't use vowels to get a larger set.

I have to imagine that if you started off a hangman game with _ _ your opponent would be quite upset!

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  • $\begingroup$ I confirm that 8 is optimal for 2-letter words in that dictionary. $\endgroup$
    – RobPratt
    Dec 20, 2020 at 18:56
  • $\begingroup$ This is getting to much... two letters are just too easy... $\endgroup$
    – AntsPiano
    Dec 21, 2020 at 2:38

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