Can you think of a 6+ letter word that is an anagram of itself? The rule is that the letters of the word must be able to be rearranged to spell the original word, but none of the letters are in their original position order.

4 letter words like dodo, mama, and papa are examples, but how many can you think of with 6 or more letters—obviously the number of letters will always have to be even. What's the longest self-anagrammatic word?

  • $\begingroup$ Can you think of a 6+ letter word that is an anagram of itself? >! stifle, or filets. $\endgroup$
    – Rosie F
    Commented Oct 23, 2016 at 14:11
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    $\begingroup$ Welcome to puzzling! $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 23, 2016 at 14:40
  • $\begingroup$ Sorry, but I do not think that themselves has any anagram with that criteria. Sorry. $\endgroup$
    – EKons
    Commented Oct 24, 2016 at 11:27
  • $\begingroup$ ah, not the word 'themselves', but the words themselves. $\endgroup$
    – stib
    Commented Oct 24, 2016 at 12:05
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    $\begingroup$ obviously the number of letters will always have to be even – Why? For example, suppose that yyy were an actual word. Let the ys be numbered like this: y₁y₂y₃. Then y₂y₃y₁ would be an anagram complying with your criteria. $\endgroup$
    – Wrzlprmft
    Commented Oct 24, 2016 at 12:12

6 Answers 6


For a word to be self-anagrammable, ...

... each letter must occur at least twice, so that it can be moved to a new position when shuffling.

"Obviously the number of letters will always have to be even". That's not true:

Take the word "aaa": You can move the first a to the end and all a's will be in new positions.

As usual with such questions top hits are found by scouring huge word lists. A 17-letter word I found is:


  • $\begingroup$ I'm curious as to what dictionary you used. The longest words I got in the three different dictionaries I have on hand were Geistesgeschichte (which isn't technically even English) and hyphenated options on-again-off-again and station-to-station. $\endgroup$
    – Will
    Commented Oct 23, 2016 at 14:39
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    $\begingroup$ @Will: Good question. I usually use one that I have concatenated from a repository of English word lists some years ago. Judging by the file names, it is SCOWL. But I have no idea which of the files I used. $\endgroup$
    – M Oehm
    Commented Oct 23, 2016 at 14:54
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    $\begingroup$ When I make use of the full range of these files, I get the 18-letter words "unprosperousnesses" and "transistorisations", which are the plurals to your and my answers. :) $\endgroup$
    – M Oehm
    Commented Oct 23, 2016 at 14:57

There is a Wikipedia article concerning the longest word in English. The longest word there is ...

Methionylthreonylthreonylglutaminylalanyl...isoleucine (the chemical name of titin containing 189,819 letters). Checking the full name (can be found via Google) confirmed that each used letter appears at least twice. There is also a video if you want to hear the full name (about 3.5 hours long, you should at least compare the beginning and the end of the video).

Unfortunately all words from the table in the Wikipedia article with lengths between 182 and 27 don't work for this puzzle, because each of them contains at least one non-repeated letter.

If you think this is too crazy and if place names are allowed there is also ...

Taumatawhakatangihangakoauauotamateaturipukakapikimaungahoronukupokaiwhenuakitanatahu (85 letters) which is "the longest officially recognized place name in an English-speaking country" (quote from the first mentioned Wikipedia article).

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Haha I pulled the same trick with a question asking about Rhymonyms! Sadly It's hard to find words that rhyme and mean the same thing as Titin. $\endgroup$
    – Areeb
    Commented Oct 23, 2016 at 20:20
  • $\begingroup$ That dead flower in the video... $\endgroup$
    – EKons
    Commented Oct 24, 2016 at 11:32
  • $\begingroup$ The IUPAC name of titin isn't considered English. $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 25, 2016 at 1:35
  • $\begingroup$ Some cuts where his beard grows, first at 43:11. Flower dies at 2:09:22. $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 31, 2016 at 9:25

Obviously we just need a word

with each letter appearing more than once

here's one such 16-letter word:



Take the word


and swap each letter with the identical letter that is elsewhere in the word. The result is the same word, but every letter has been moved.

This is $14$ letters long


As others have noted, a word is autoanagrammable if and only if every letter in the word appears at least twice.

Here are a few such words. I obtained these words from trawling wordlists.











  • $\begingroup$ For words that appear a nontrivial amount in writing and speech, I think your "ecclesiastical" is the clear winner. Also your username is very appropriate. $\endgroup$
    – isaacg
    Commented Jan 23 at 4:39

A palindrome word will work (as long as it has an even amount of letters) as each letter has to appear more than once.

The longest palindrome word is


So $12$ letters long

  • $\begingroup$ If the number of letters is even, yes, each letter will be repeated, but if it is odd, then the central letter will not necessarily be repeated. $\endgroup$
    – paolo
    Commented Oct 24, 2016 at 9:25
  • $\begingroup$ @paolo yeah I mentioned it has to have an even amount of letters $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 24, 2016 at 9:56
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    $\begingroup$ If the central letter appears somewhere else, i.e. it's repeated three times, then the three could be arranged so that none appear where they started $\endgroup$
    – stib
    Commented Oct 25, 2016 at 1:30

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