Saturday, July 15, 2006


Everyone knows the alphabetical workout "The quick brown fox jumped over the lazy dog." But the typewriter journal ETCetera offers two more exacting alternatives:

"XV quick nymphs beg fjord waltz."

"Blowzy night-frumps vex'd Jack Q."

Can Dizzyheads think of others?


Blogger HeyZeus! said...

Have you read Ella Minnow Pea? There's one in that book that's shorter and makes sense in English. Sadly, I don't remember what it is.


10:24 AM  
Blogger S. said...

Pack my box with five dozen liquor jugs.

That's an old one.

10:29 AM  
Blogger Thomas Beard said...

There's always the ominous "Five or six big jet planes zoomed quickly by the tower," or the prim and decidedly more interesting "We promptly judged antique ivory buckles for the next prize."

12:30 PM  
Blogger Jenny D said...

These are from a page called Lady Typewriter:

J Q Vandz struck my big fox whelp
Quick blowing zephyrs vex daft Jim
Jackdaws love my big sphinx of quartz

And there is an interesting page that explains they are called pangrams (makes sense...) and has various other odd and interesting stuff, rather philosophical:

5:21 PM  
Blogger Ed said...

The Oulipo Compendium calls sentences that use each letter *only* once "isopangrams." (Pangrams hit every letter, but there are no restrictions on number of appearances.)

The Ou. Comp. cites two English examples from the Oxford Guide to Word Games: "Cwm fjord-bank glyphs vext quiz" and "Nth black fjords vex Qum gyp wiz"—neither seems as elegant as the ones in ETCetera!

In French, Jacques Jouet has been in pursuit of isopangrams, and in ESPIONS "has imagined situations involving spies (the word is used broadly) who, ever concerned with secrecy and security, are profesionally inclined to communicating in concise, cryptic messages. The quality of the isopangrams improves from one anecdote to the next as first proper names and then their abbreviations are eliminated. But not, alas, all abbreviations..."

1:14 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home

View My Stats