Category: Language Adventures

October 28, 2023


Today, our language adventure takes us into the realm of sesquipedalian wonders with the word “Hippopotomonstrosesquippedaliophobia.”

Let’s break our 15-syllable word down to get to its meaning:

  • Hippopotamus: Greek for horse.
  • Monstrum: Latin for monster.
  • Sesquippedalio: A playful take on “sesquipedalian,” which refers to long words.
  • Phobia: Greek for fear.

This tongue-twister is not just a word; it’s a playful paradox. “Hippopotomonstrosesquippedaliophobia” humorously describes the fear of long words.

It certainly is a head-turner at any happy hour. You might even fear using it.
How silly – being afraid of a word! (But your children might think you need to be committed.)

Although Hippopotomonstrosesquippedaliophobia is not a recognized condition by the American Psychiatric Association, it does exist and can fall into the category of an anxiety disorder or a social disorder.

How To Pronounce


Embracing new terms is the first step in getting comfortable with them. Challenge yourself to incorporate “Hippopotomonstrosesquippedaliophobia” into a conversation today.

Language, with its twists and turns, can be a playground of amusement. Fun words make our brains come alive and our creativity blossom.

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