What is it called when you can easily read scrambled words?

Perhaps you’ve received a widely circulated email that begins with this nonsensical sentence:

I cdnuolt blveiee taht I cluod aulaclty uesdnatnrd waht I was rdanieg.

The boggling thing about the sentence is that even though the words are scrambled, you can read it. It makes sense. Do you have an above average IQ? Or do you possess some rare cognitive ability?

Sorry to burst your bubble, but most English speakers can comprehend this sentence made of scrambled words. The neologism used to describe the ability to do so is typoglycemia. While the term is not yet in our dictionary sources, we find it fascinating enough to mention regardless.

Typoglycemia refers the ability to understand the meaning of words in a sentence as long as the exterior letters of each word are correct and all the letters of the word are present.

Typoglycemia neither refers to a medical condition, nor is it used by the medical community. It appears to be a portmanteau of “typo” and “glycemia,” (the presence of glucose in blood.)

There is no real connection between hypoglycemia and the phenomena of being able to read scrambled words. Hypoglycemia is an abnormally low level of glucose in the blood. It literally means “under-sweet blood.” The name is a pun.


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  2. What Can I Bring To A New Job | New Job Today -  September 22, 2014 - 6:12 am

    […] What is it called when you can easily read scrambled words … – What amazes me is how people so quickly claim it is a hoax and imply this phenomenon doesn’t exist. Aside from the ridiculous claims of Cambridge or the claims of …… […]

  3. jaime -  May 16, 2013 - 9:49 am

    Guys please let me gvie yuo mroe knowledge about unscrambled words
    I know it also works with spanish, but also in more supposedly complex ways. That’s why I’m here typing because I had just read one in Spanish and Im just making a.reashearch. I saw a message on facebook that was mixed with numbers and letters and I could it read it perferctly.
    I can also read English unscrambled messages. I am really intrigued now, because I know it works easier on fluent readers.It also works with non-native speakers, but, of coruse, they need to be somewhat execellent language readers.

  4. amethyst -  March 17, 2013 - 9:29 pm

    oh me gosh i thought that is kinda cool but uh not all that much but still i guesse its cool /:).

  5. michellebewell -  February 4, 2013 - 8:12 am

    Todd T and others- This is just my opinion, so take it as just that, but being an energy worker and an avid student on the electromagnetic fields of the heart and brain, I would venture to say that one reason that we can understand these sentences is that we are actually comprehending it holistically- and thus intuiting the meaning without needing all of the details.

    In theory, we can each live our lives in this stream of “knowing” which is far beyond the capacity of our physical brains. This is a non-rational and a non-linear experience which tends to be dismissed in our culture today.

    I invite you to try expanding this idea and see what kind of results you get…..

    • Ramya S Gowda -  August 23, 2014 - 3:15 am

      you are right michelle… infact we read a word as a word n its meaning n not as a combination of alphabets…. and since vocabulary s already stored n human brain… we can read wat we knw..

  6. Carole -  December 2, 2012 - 6:37 am

    This brain ability really makes proofreading VERY difficult because all the words look like they are correct.

  7. KOBE -  November 12, 2012 - 4:52 pm


  8. Erick -  November 8, 2012 - 7:39 pm

    I don’t know why, but I could read these sentences when I was 6 years old. Right now, I’m 12 with an IQ of 160, with transferring binary numbers into actual letters. This format of writing is not difficult to understand once you start at it at a young age of creativity.

  9. Amanda124 -  October 24, 2012 - 9:17 pm

    Does it get harder when you use more uncommon words or bigger words, yes but for people who think they’re all much smarter then others who may not be able to unscramble the words that they may usually be able to read the words in normal form well news flash for you, you’re not. I mean I can read it and understand it but I have a friend who can’t, so does that make him stupid and you people smarter then him? No. So for people who are like oh yeah i can read it and those who can’t are fools and not as smart, you must be stuck on yourself. -__-

  10. Anonymous -  October 16, 2012 - 4:36 am

    I lvoe raednig setnaces lkie tihs deos aynone konw waht teh wrod for it is cllaed?

    • anonymous -  March 16, 2015 - 2:19 am

      I think it is just call typoglycemia like above . . . .

      If it is a real word and people are using it how come it’s not in the dictionary???!!! I tried searching it but it didn’t work. . . .

  11. Sambangbang -  September 18, 2012 - 12:56 pm

    waoh taht is aeswmoe. i gtota try it on my tacehr in my calss at shocol. tanhks dctiioanry.com!!!

  12. Todd T -  September 10, 2012 - 12:06 am

    What amazes me is how people so quickly claim it is a hoax and imply this phenomenon doesn’t exist. Aside from the ridiculous claims of Cambridge or the claims of unusual intellectual skills, the fact remains that people can in fact read these words as fast as they can the same words unscrambled.

    So when the question is asked how and does the brain do this and why, the answer given is always how the original chain letter was debunked and other presumably English professors start to ramble on about how base and ridiculous the american education system is.

    Unanswered is why would the human mind be able to do this and the fact that it can so easily and the majority of the population can do it, it seems possible there is an underutilized skill in the brain.

    • Greg -  January 10, 2015 - 6:18 pm

      Greetings Todd:
      Is there a special skill for us to do this? What do you know about this? How can this talent help us with certain jobs? Is that something you know about? Did you ever play “JUMBLE” It’s the game you see in the paper where you unscramble words. I can unscramble a word in seconds and solve that part of the puzzle in seconds. I’m just wondering is this is a real skill and if it’s something we can utilize somewhere in this world? Let me know what you think? Or am I crazy thinking like this?

    • anotheranonymous -  March 16, 2015 - 2:20 am

      how can people say that? Why don’t they try reading this themselves? I can read this paragraph fluently like it is normal. It’s like a magic trick, because my friend can’t read it, but I can. :) It’s cool

  13. Yeaboi -  August 29, 2012 - 5:18 pm

    It’s just hilarious how people think they’re special for such a simple thing :DD

  14. Austin -  August 10, 2012 - 4:13 pm

    I don’t know about everybody else but I was able to read all of the scrambled words that people put in their comments. Even the ones that did not follow the “rule.” Plus sometimes I am able to finish words that are being spoken before the actual speaker does. Is there a name for that? And can anybody else do it as well?

    • Parabolst -  April 12, 2014 - 6:40 am

      And feel my phone ring 15-30 seconds before it actually rings.

  15. WaapFu -  July 24, 2012 - 5:26 am

    That was painful to read. Somewhere in my brain, I expected the comments on this article to be spelt correctly, with all the letters in the correct order.

    I know I shouldn’t complain, but… Um… Yolo? XD

    Hearing about this always makes me feel sad. I really like language, and when people get things like this that can be used as some sort of excuse to not bother with it, I die a little inside, in a non-dramatic fashion.

    Goodnight, people.

    • Bob the angry old guy -  August 19, 2014 - 12:43 pm

      I die a little inside when people overpunctuate, use ellipses for no good reason, use words like um and capitalize them for no good reason, also abbreviations like “yolo” and stupid emoticons like XD

      It also bothers the hell out of me when people die a little inside because of something they saw on the internet. In supposedly non dramatic fashion, as if dying over the use of a language could be anything other than over-dramatic.

      Also when people use corporate speak like people, to people. Don’t do that, people.

  16. Brains -  July 6, 2012 - 6:43 am

    Teh asteenbe mkenoy giunes reids a tginrenae otpinohtrer and ahrobs nalcontmerue.

    The absentee monkey genius rides a tangerine ornithopter and abhors nomenclature.

    Slightly difficult due to less predictability, although, none of the words were very foreign… even though ornithopter is not techinically a word according to this spell check.

    Redraes amitttnpeg to dipeechr ciatmelcpod sneeecnts ectoneunr safgiiinnct dulfitifcy.

    Readers attempting to decipher complicated sentences encounter significant difficulty. <- Not so much.

    The mind processes words as a whole, and to some degree, sentences as well. When words follow each other in a predictable way, it is much easier to decipher.

    Try this one on for size…

    Form the sdnoiptant of rittlaievy ttfionaansromrs the torehy can be fduenod on the aptioumssn taht the flied is rtrneeeepsd by a nctrmiyen-mosal tnoser, and taht the Linaaaggrn is the suraqe root of its danientmert;

    • Bobbi L Craig -  July 20, 2014 - 11:05 am

      Show off!!

  17. Sonya -  June 24, 2012 - 6:00 pm

    it was so aesy taht i cluod of siad it in teywn-vief sodencs.

    Can onybady raed thta stal drow.?

  18. Patrick -  May 31, 2012 - 9:32 pm

    Era eno yo fy ooa ublt enderstant dhis sentenca? Es fy, oou’ra ewesomi.

  19. jahleel -  May 22, 2012 - 4:41 pm


  20. nunya -  February 24, 2012 - 8:37 am

    wlel i tihnk it is pterty ncie i maen how aewomse is taht? i can do taht esaliy its jsut taht i cna’t tihnk aoubt waht to say so now i wlil sotp.

  21. Haleigh -  February 23, 2012 - 4:29 pm

    taht is SO ovbuois! Eervonye konws taht! Tasnlrtae tihs: klil baanans, but olny if etanig alpeps!

  22. justme -  February 22, 2012 - 5:43 pm

    I agree Steve, and just maybe it has something to do with how fast a person reads?

  23. steve -  February 22, 2012 - 1:56 am

    Also it seems the brain looks at the word before and after the word to get an idea what the word were looking at means. And no doubt also looks at the sentence as a whole too. Prob more ways the brain is looking at a sentence as well,,just some thoughts.

  24. Stan Rhythm -  January 23, 2012 - 6:32 pm

    Ya know, if you actually did have an IQ of 149, you’d prolly have some idea of how low or high that might be. I mean, I’m just sayin’. Ya know?

  25. Elise E. -  November 1, 2011 - 8:27 am

    My reading skills aren’t that good so Typoglycemia doesn’t really mess me up RANDOM! last year at 13 I had an IQ of 149 ;) ! I’m not sure how good that is.

  26. noyb noyberson -  July 18, 2011 - 8:26 pm

    Am I the only one to note that this article doesn’t explain WHY the neologism ‘typoglycemia’ was chosen or why it is a pun?

  27. steph -  January 30, 2011 - 8:26 pm

    Ummmmm I was gonna say somethin but I can’t reamamba

    O wells bi bi

    xoxo steph luv ya or at leat some of ya maybe I probs don’t know
    any of u so lol bi

  28. steph -  January 30, 2011 - 8:22 pm

    I agree wit power this is a stupid and rickedy rick or wht eva it is
    u r just bragin and wht u said is kinda mean and melissa
    ur right I didn’t read da thing but I could still un scramble
    everythin cause there so darn simple. Btw it doesn’t matta how people
    Spell cause I find this way quiker.

    P.S. can u plez keep da comments short or at least put dem in2
    little paragraphs cause I a slow reada and it would be much easier
    4 me and probs others as well


    xoxo Steph, luv ya well some of ya

  29. Rebekah -  January 30, 2011 - 1:31 pm

    @ xxx, if you hate this site, why are you here?
    @ beetle, I am from up north, and I still find that very funny. xD

    My father had actually gotten that e-mail, and I found it very facinating. I love this site because
    1. I need it weekly for this, again, weekly assignment in my language arts class.
    2. It always has very interesting articles. ^^

  30. Shira -  January 30, 2011 - 12:43 pm

    it really isnt that special…most people’s brain just takes in common words without reading the whole thing. for heaven’s sake why make up some stupid name to define something that isnt actually anything fascinating. we’re human beings with minds that develop as we grow and are capable of doing this after a while is all. also after a while reading a lot of words correctly spelt you dont have to read them incorrectly spelt anymore unless theres horrific spelling. however most of the time you can actually spot mistakes if the sentence or word doesnt make sense.
    also @ rickedy rick…’All y’alls Englishk is atrocious’….really? looks who’s talking buddy boy. and 180 IQ…is that suppsoed to be impressive or depressive?
    oh yeh…give a five year old this sentence…see if they can work it out within two seconds…think they can? no…why? umm…duh theyre brains havnt devloped so far yet.
    i repeat…it really isnt anything special–>to all those who became euphoric at the thought that they were suddenly more unique than everyone else.

  31. bass_drum12 -  January 29, 2011 - 10:31 pm

    furthermore, why must we debate this word, which probably was thought up within the last 18 months? It’s quite new (probably), and is likely to be changed soon. If you haven’t noticed, they have yet to add it to their dictionary, meaning it will be edited in the near future, or forgotten, depending on how popular it becomes.

    Yours Truly (and currently failing Literature class, but passing Language Arts),

  32. bass_drum12 -  January 29, 2011 - 10:24 pm

    You guys are making this too complicated! I’m twelve (almost thirteen) and I get it! All you do is switch most of the letters in each word, and depending on how much time you spend on average exposed to poor spelling and grammar (e.g., texting!!!), you can decipher the message with ease. Each one of you that thinks you are a smart individual just because you post an opinion on a dictionary website’s word blog, yet are only adding to the confusion of those of slightly lesser intelligence is an utter hypocrite. If you self-acclaimed “intellectuals” would just take a few moments of your time to read the entire article to which you are adding comments, you are likely to find that your initial response was partially (if not entirely) incorrect.

  33. C Greene -  January 29, 2011 - 10:54 am

    Please do not be so presumptuous as to impose a non-word ‘typoglycemia’ on us! The meaning you intend for it does not match its component part, ‘glycemia’. You know better! It’s not cute, it’s not funny, it doesn’t even make me smile. Create a real word for this phenomenon, constructing it so that its parts match what it defines/describes! I can only hope that you’re joking.

  34. Anonymous -  January 28, 2011 - 3:30 pm

    @ERAGON: BAHAHAHAHAHA!! I do hope you don’t think anyone’s falling for that. I don’t really know what you’re talking about, but I must admit the horrendous spelling and grammar were entertaining, along with the sooooooooooooooo cliched use of “It was a cold dark night…” And the mix-up of “there”, “their”, and “they’re”. LOL

  35. ERAGON -  January 26, 2011 - 7:42 am

    whoops wrong button what I was writing was this site helpes us better understand this language in it’s integrity we can’t leave this time till next year that is when the day of darkness begins till then we creat novels on what we know as some form of fiction. for instance Christopher Paolini’s real name is Brom. Ann McCaffery is an R.I member as is 1/3 of the planet. your site all so heples us learn more things true names making us even more pawer full in magic.

    It was a cold dark night at Luto’s Keep. Dragons and there riders prepared to leave on what wold most certainly be there last chance to save the world. As the riders and there dragon companions prepared to leave Luo a tiny man just left of the current wing leader asked. “Is that the last Kregan?” “The last we could find there mite be more but I doubt they will survive.” “ Not with the Dark Lord after them and us no doubt.” chided Laya a fair slightly to the right of Kregan. As they took flight the dragons arranged them self in a triangular formation so that Frail a female gold dragon and her rider Jenny a light and power full elf was guarded at all times. As they flue more dragon and there riders joined as well as meany wild dragons. Wen they first took flight they were thirty strong now they were seventy strong and growing. It got colder as they flue not even the dragons internal flame could keep them worm. And with the wing leader constantly changing none of the dragons dared breath fire in fear of hitting another dragon or rider in case they pass there way. The riders would not conger fire with magic in fear that the dark lord would find them. As they neared Trager the farthest south they could go before hitting the Shadow Lands the dragons noted the dark lords dragon’s sent but from a witch was not threatening they alerted there riders any way but by then it was to late the Dark Lord had spotted them but did not attack he never has but tries to stop them by other means. As the dragons avoided the Dark Lord attempt to stop them Kragen gave Frail and Jenny the order to leave as quickly as possible they abode there orders. Jenny prepared to open a Shadow door so that they could escape wen they were safely inside they closed the door to there friends. The land scape before them was strange to them both. Not knowing what else to do Jenny took out the object she was intrusted to keep safe she slipped it in to a bag and wrought a note and teleported it dawn in the ground creating a cavern were it lay.
    But also created a massive cavern that leads to the surface so that they could watch and protect the bag till the right time comes. Wen she finished a chill ran dawn her spine and she turned around there before her was a shadow door and coming throw was Kregan on his dragon followed by the Dark Lord all so on his dragon. Jenny drew her sword ready for an attack but Kergon said? “No don’t hurt him he is not what you think he is let him explain!” “Then do so convince me not to kill you right now Dark Lord!” demanded Jenny. “As you wish for starters my name is Ilander and my dragon’s name is Krill we were sent like you to your time to worn you and help you here now and for the same reason.” As the spoke he removed a smiler bag and placed it with the other then continued. “The time we are from is the one created by this one had we not came. We have bin trying to get your attention so that we could explain what would happen to your time if it would stay on its current course but with out us.” Ilander and created an image of the world that would have bin and explained. “The items we have go together but are separate. The dragons of my time were slowly becoming extincted because there was no males and females that were able to mate by the time there were it was to late for my world so we came to yours and from there to here.” “Wait if you were only here to help then who was everyone running from wen the three cassias of Gerya fell?” asked Jenny “me but a different me some haw wen people go through a Shadow Door it creates an opposite them so if your good wen you go through one then your opposite is evil and the same for evil. But now we are stuck here till a thing called the Day of Darkness we don’t know wen it is or what it is exactly. The years that followed the three companions and there dragons became close friends here cavern grow to accommodate them all. But eventually they mad a cassia with a large tunnels so the dragon could move about with ease and with out being herd from above. Eventually the people of the time expanded there towns and lived all around the country. The cassia then became a place of learning but all was had the same teachers and all was with there forbidden places and much more.
    This is not the end of aware story just the end of peace.

  36. ERAGON -  January 26, 2011 - 7:08 am

    I am Eragon shadeslayer rider of Saphira Bjartskuler but while we are here I am called nathaniel givens me and my men the R.I are stationed in westminster Colorado

  37. toni sco -  January 18, 2011 - 7:49 am

    What is the origin of the verb to behave?

    Does it literally mean for one to act as they he or she were in a haven?

  38. fireshadow11 -  January 10, 2011 - 7:59 am

    @Power DUDE! EPIC, EPIC FAILURE MAN. Did you like, not read ANY of what it said? The freaking reason it’s ‘easy’ is because the first and last letters of the words are in the right order!!!! DUH. They’re SUPPOSED to be easy. Yours are harder cuz the first and last letters AREN’T in order. sigh. HOW COULD YOU MISS THAT???

  39. Miss Misunderestimated -  January 1, 2011 - 4:01 pm

    No, it’s actually called “Mega pro-ness”

  40. Venky -  December 27, 2010 - 9:53 pm

    really its a work given to the brain

  41. Blue Mark -  December 27, 2010 - 3:30 pm

    “Typoglycemia” works because of the way the mind scans words when reading. Most people take in whole words at a time when reading, rather than sequential letters and building them into words, some readers even take in whole sentences at a time. Initial and terminal letters, along with context is often all that is needed to make sense of a sentence – especially when the sentence sticks to reasonably common words.

    If you push yourself to read faster, you’ll find those sentences even easier to understand, because you are forcing yourself to take in larger chunks of words and allowing looser pattern recognition to make sense of them.

  42. Saf -  December 27, 2010 - 2:29 pm


    Cambridge had nothing to do with it, despite what your chain-forwarded email told you.

    As several people above have already commented, this “ability” is nothing more than a bit of mental slight-of-hand. In the case of the example sentence: Half of the twelve words either aren’t scrambled at all, or are four-letter words with only one letter displaced (and are such common typos that our brains are already adjusted to auto-correct them). The sentence is also very predictable, making it very easy for your brain to fill in the blanks.

    Let’s try a classic “garden path” sentence, in which the structure and content are not easily predictable (unless you majored in psycholinguistics). Keep in mind that we’re following all the rules here — the first and last letters of the words are intact, and all letters are accounted for.

    The cpemolx heuoss mrieard and sligne sidelors and tehir fiimeals.

    Now then… if you didn’t have any problems understanding that sentence, then you probably do have an unusual ability.

    Disappointed in The Hot Word for perpetuating this kind of nonsense.


  43. Davince -  December 27, 2010 - 1:08 pm

    these peopole are called autistic

  44. Melissa -  December 27, 2010 - 11:10 am

    I’m wondering if a number of you even read the article – it clearly states that, ” Typoglycemia refers the ability to understand the meaning of words in a sentence as long as the exterior letters of each word are correct and all the letters of the word are present.” So why are several of you posting that exact same information? Also, for Marco A. Cruz, the explanation is self-explanatory. Most people can do it, so why does it need to be “related” to something?

  45. Latika -  December 27, 2010 - 4:09 am

    c’est magnifique….!!!

  46. Marco A. Cruz -  December 26, 2010 - 8:14 pm

    But, could anybody give further information about this phenomenon? I found it very interesting, the ability to read scrambled words. If not related to I.Q., what is it related to?

  47. Mr. D [A.K.A] Elysian -  December 26, 2010 - 10:00 am

    Idk what to say… I understood the one in the article but like what scott that looked like complete jibberish and i coulnd’t understand it at all.

  48. sign -  December 26, 2010 - 1:07 am

    And moreelse.

  49. sign -  December 26, 2010 - 1:06 am

    spellcheck and interpretation.

  50. Pinki -  December 25, 2010 - 10:56 am

    Oh, btw, to that Nate guy…you do know that you’re bragging? And that you spelled writing wrong? Hehe….:P

  51. Pinki -  December 25, 2010 - 10:50 am

    And wdors lkie the oens avobe are pterty esay to cpromenehd, so yaeh….

  52. Pinki -  December 25, 2010 - 10:46 am

    Yeah, I know about this. They had it in the Science Center. A study at some university (I think Cambridge) revealed that as long as the first and last letters of the word were in order, you could understand the words. It’s not THAT special. It also said that the human mind doesn’t read the whole word, and that—Sorry, I forgot…:) Hope this is at least slightly informative for those who just knew about this typoglycemia thingy.

  53. YULE | BLOGCHI@mayopia.com -  December 25, 2010 - 7:15 am

    [...] walk alone” if you’re schizophrenic. — Some never using spell check makes us typoallergenic. — So “Deck the Halls” and Wassail too and burn the log we may get through. [...]

  54. rameshwar -  December 24, 2010 - 10:15 pm


  55. CJ747270 -  December 24, 2010 - 8:40 pm


  56. KLB -  December 24, 2010 - 12:11 am


  57. Touche77 -  December 23, 2010 - 11:29 pm

    What I find fascinating is how many of you took the time to scramble your words so that you could make your point of being able to unscramble your words….hahahahahahaha
    @ xxx……..I think you need to go back to school….non sense?!?!? Really?!?!?!?

  58. me -  December 23, 2010 - 7:11 pm

    We’ll just make words for everything, won’t we?

    Perhaps that’s why it’s often difficult for us to catch spelling errors in the first sweep.

  59. kelly -  December 23, 2010 - 3:01 pm

    i cna’t blveiee i acn aulaclty rdanieg ti ! wwo Lol!

  60. fluffy10009 -  December 23, 2010 - 2:48 pm

    It must be tiring to scramble up words for people to read

  61. H8R_Nation -  December 23, 2010 - 2:41 pm

    Welcome to 2005.

  62. JAFO -  December 23, 2010 - 2:04 pm

    I always thought it was easy to read that sentence due to the glut of extremely bad spelling found on “teh internet”. Eventually, words start to look wrong if they are spelled CORRECTLY!!!!

    Seriously, I agree that the example sentence is easy to read because it’s a bunch of small, common words.

  63. Deb Burton -  December 23, 2010 - 12:38 pm

    Typoglific? This is why I think it wouldn’t be hard to maak thu Inglish langwidge more fonetic! (and I’m not following the rule of first and larst letters heeu eether!) I’ve ritten a webpaag on it wich could duu with sum comments if enywun wonts tuu no…

  64. louis paiz -  December 23, 2010 - 12:16 pm

    scramble is facinatting i have done this for many years i concidered it a tallent since one can scramble words even from languages unknown to one.for me is like reading jest with consonants.also i have to thank dictionary.com for the wonderful work and please keep educating the public the way you have done untill now .have a merry chistmass and a venturous new year 20011 to all and every one of you that make possible such endeivour. thanks again

  65. DTK -  December 23, 2010 - 11:04 am

    Power is correct in saying that scrambling all the letters makes it impossible to read. The sentence is essentially ciphered. In order to decipher it, a certain amount of pattern recognition is needed. The brain can assume what the sentence is supposed to say when enough information is supplied to give context. Kate Gladstone makes a great point for this. Understanding the pattern depends on the context each word places its neighbour in. Lnois would be assumed to be “lions” if the preceding word was “acfarin”. “African loins” doesn’t quite have the same ring. There must be only a suggestion of meaning and coherence for our brains (or Brians) to map out the landscape of the sentence. This is the root of many printing errors and the driving force for that most angelic of demons, the Spell-Checker.

  66. James Anderson Merritt -  December 23, 2010 - 11:01 am

    @Rich Durst: I agree. We need a real name for this ability, not some kind of pun (the basis for which may be forgotten or unappreciated in some future time).

    Perhaps we can put together something from Latin or Greek roots that means “to see arranged?”

  67. Pine Tree Girl -  December 23, 2010 - 10:57 am

    Typoglycemia- Yeah, cool dude! No, it’s not. It actually sounds really gross. It sounds like a type of passing out after eating a Pixy Stick. How bout using something with actual roots?

  68. TYPOGLYCEMIA | BLOGCHI@mayopia.com -  December 23, 2010 - 10:55 am

    [...] Neologistically speaking — we’re all becoming schizophrenics – Urban, Spanglish, Esperanto, Ebonics, and so on, Psychogenics. — We ain’t even got our English down writing. — We’ll pass on that “Typoglycemia”. — What da heck. — Our concern is hypoglycemia — No sugar tonight, without spell check. –>>Rupert L.T.Rhyme [...]

  69. Jonathan -  December 23, 2010 - 10:42 am

    I may not have all the rules for how to keep words readable quite right, this is just from memory.

    This ability isn’t entirely a myth, but it’s also not accurate the way it was described. To be easily readable, the words not only need to start and end with the right letters but the letters inside need to be clumped based on the patterns we use to identify words — generally within the same syllable. Otherwise it takes extra time rearranging letters mentally to figure out the word.

    In the provided example, “uesdnatnrd” is actually quite hard to read on its own because it’s a multi-syllable word that rearranges letters all over. “udnersntad” on the other hand can be rapidly read, but you’ll note it isn’t a complete jumble any more.

  70. TJ -  December 23, 2010 - 10:11 am


  71. TJ -  December 23, 2010 - 10:11 am

    I concur Rich, we need a better name for

  72. mark V -  December 23, 2010 - 9:57 am

    @Rich Durst

    Oh yes, heaven forbid English be confusing and follow no logica-OHWAITAMINUTE.

  73. Marlene -  December 23, 2010 - 9:29 am

    I agree with Rich Durst, Typoglycemia, while sounding a little witty, makes no logical sense, and aren’t we adding enough illogical words to our language already?

  74. Ol Chris -  December 23, 2010 - 8:04 am

    This type of correspondence is common among our young texters who are getting used to the notion that spelling is not important. The decline in our schools of the teachin of readin, writin’ and cipherin is sad.

  75. ec -  December 23, 2010 - 7:51 am

    Do you guys edit your blogs before you post them? I don’t mean to be critical, but such errors are hard to overlook on a website dedicated to words. Please fix:
    “Typoglycemia refers TO the ability…”
    “WHILE [not why] the term is not yet…”
    “…and “glycemia,” (the presence of glucose in blood.)” [Period should be on the outside.]

    The post itself was interesting though. Thank you.

  76. Rich Durst -  December 23, 2010 - 7:50 am

    Also, could we please come up with a better name for this? Typoglycemia makes no logical sense, and is liable to cause confusion.

  77. Rich Durst -  December 23, 2010 - 7:46 am

    This seems to be fairly easy for native speakers, but I wonder how non-native English users would handle it. I’m also curious whether the same thing would work in other languages.

  78. Rickedy Rick -  December 23, 2010 - 7:16 am

    I’m only 30, but my IQ is 180. I pity the fool that can’t read this type of thing. Only us intelligents can handle this kind of thing. As for the rest of you – I’m glad you’re reading this site. All y’alls Englishk is atrocious!!!!

  79. Mrs Dean Wormer -  December 23, 2010 - 7:11 am

    “Why the term is not yet in our dictionary sources, we find it fascinating enough to mention regardless. ”

    Huh? How ironic for Dictionary.com to display such horrible grammar.

  80. Scieditor -  December 23, 2010 - 6:45 am

    We may be able to unscramble on the fly. We can also spot when autocorrect changes “while” to “why.” Typorific!

  81. dejavugirl -  December 23, 2010 - 6:27 am

    where is cyberquill?

  82. Gnirol -  December 23, 2010 - 5:56 am

    It’s harder if you employ less frequently used words and avoid short words. Redraes amitttnpeg to dipeechr ciatmelcpod sneeecnts ectoneunr safgiiinnct dulfitifcy.

  83. Sowjanya -  December 23, 2010 - 5:36 am

    I agree with @power’s opinion ,…
    its easy, kaito, to read it because its the same sentance,… try if can by taking some other sentence,….
    any ways thanks dictionary.com,… now i know what its called

  84. TryAHarderOne -  December 23, 2010 - 3:54 am

    Considerably harder to do when the phrase is nonsensical or features long and/or uncommon words:
    Teh asteenbe mkenoy giunes reids a tginrenae otpinohtrer and ahrobs nalcontmerue.

    Most people should find the above sentence a bit more challenging than the example given in the article.

  85. beetle -  December 23, 2010 - 3:19 am

    @ Jo Mama. You must be from the north. In the south people have two first names. In the north people have two last names.

  86. Kate Gladstone -  December 23, 2010 - 2:27 am

    So is this scrambled word — penraatl — “prenatal” or “parental”?

    Is this scrambled word — “cnoervsiaotn” –
    “conservation” or “conversation”?

    Is this scrambled word — “lnois” —
    “lions” or “loins”?

    Is this scrambled word — “skteas” –
    “skates” or “steaks” or “stakes”?

  87. Anonymous >:D -  December 23, 2010 - 1:56 am

    “I cdnuolt blveiee taht I cluod aulaclty uesdnatnrd waht I was rdanieg= I couldn’t believe that I could actually understand what I was reading.”
    That took me about 30 seconds (NOT JOKING!!!)

  88. pete -  December 23, 2010 - 12:34 am


  89. Lizzy Moses -  December 23, 2010 - 12:08 am

    Teh fsirt tmy i was tsih ni my mlia xob i saw albe ot raed it, tnakx 4 tllen em teh nmae.

  90. mitnin -  December 22, 2010 - 11:30 pm

    I’m starting to think you guys put in all these little writing slips just to tease your readers. I’ll bite.

    “Why the term is not yet in our dictionary sources…” The “why” should be “while”.

  91. Cyberquill -  December 22, 2010 - 11:15 pm

    It appears to be a portmanteau of “typo” and “glycemia”

    Agreed. Just as portmanteau appears to be a portmanteau of “port” and “manteau.”

  92. Josh -  December 22, 2010 - 10:08 pm

    Power – Be sure you’ve read everything before you comment on it.

  93. Random -  December 22, 2010 - 9:54 pm

    We can read with ease if these 2 conditions are met :

    1) The first and last letter are the same; e.g. taht from that can be read easily because both Ts are in the same position.

    2) We recognize the word/ seen it before; e.g. aeloimatre may not be easy to read, because we hardly see the word ameliorate.

  94. durp -  December 22, 2010 - 9:48 pm

    jeez all you need to do is type without spellchecking D: but my typing is perfect LOL

  95. ForeverMe -  December 22, 2010 - 9:38 pm

    Aw man…and I tughoht I rlaely did hvae a hgih IQ wehn tehy metineond it. Tehy rlaely bsetrud my blbube. Umm, can aynone ustneadrnd waht I jsut wotre? :D
    I fsrit saw tihs in the Dtiroet Snceice Ctneer, and I tughoht it was rlaely cool. It flet azimnag taht I cluod altcaluy raed tihs. All we need is the fsrit and last ltetres of the wrod. Of cursoe, taht wlnodu’t wrok on trehe (and uendr) lteetr wdros.
    By the way, why ins’t taht wrod in tehir sruceos? I maen, sunhold’t ervey wrod be on teihr lsit? Oh wlel. :D
    Ok, tihs is rlaely hrad, eclepsilay in lnog wdros. But it’s fun! I lkie sbnamiclrg up wdros! :D

  96. @...@ -  December 22, 2010 - 9:23 pm

    if we can read words this way,then what’s the sense of knowing the correct spelling of the word anyway?…ah,maybe just for us not to look dumb..RGHIT?

  97. xxx -  December 22, 2010 - 9:05 pm

    i hate this website its non sense

  98. roflicelance -  December 22, 2010 - 8:46 pm

    Jo mama! I love dictionary.com too!

  99. rameshwar -  December 22, 2010 - 8:32 pm

    its realy interesting

  100. renee -  December 22, 2010 - 7:50 pm

    taht’s ralely fsanitanig… i cuold try it on all my firneds..

  101. FatGuts -  December 22, 2010 - 7:32 pm

    When I read the title I thought the answer would be:


  102. mabu -  December 22, 2010 - 6:48 pm

    please email me….

  103. raj ganesh -  December 22, 2010 - 6:45 pm

    Its rlleay ftasanict ot dare kndi of words in tihs bolg it giong to be vrey ufullse to ystersoung for fmingra teh snteence…

  104. Kaito -  December 22, 2010 - 6:26 pm

    @Power- I could read it… :3

    Aynyaws, denos’t it seem wried how tihs wrkos? I maen, you wluod tnhik taht wtih the ltertes of the wrod all sbeclrmad up lkie tehy are wluod mkae it ISBMSPILOE to raed, dno’t you arege? xDD;;

  105. FooGriffy -  December 22, 2010 - 5:58 pm

    I love this. I was looking for the name of this understanding scrambled words, and now I know. Thank you!

  106. Alea59681 -  December 22, 2010 - 5:56 pm

    its like txting sort of. ma b a lzy txter?

  107. Nate -  December 22, 2010 - 5:32 pm

    Ive always been able to do that but I never knew what the name for it was.It’s not really a big deal to know I can do it because my IQ is 120 at the age of 13.
    (I was writting my response as a typoglycemia but when I used “h” for the first time is sent me to the definition of “pun” and even though i’ll waste my time explaining I wont do it again.)

  108. Scott -  December 22, 2010 - 5:26 pm

    I tsnk tdas addows mi tu qudafy fir a mehudikal muriguhna lichens.

  109. Jimmy -  December 22, 2010 - 5:13 pm

    It’s a myth. A lot of words in sentences are three letters, so those words are left unscrambled. Four letter words are only changed by the two middle letters switching position. The reason you can understand the sentence is because you’re accustomed to common sentences and which words are likely to come after other words.

  110. Neilla S Aflakpui -  December 22, 2010 - 4:50 pm

    i have heard of this before but didn’t have any idea what the name given to it was…THANKS DICTIONARY.COM!

  111. Power -  December 22, 2010 - 4:35 pm

    So ridiculous, if you can read scrambled words you do have special powers, that sentence up there is so simple because the first letter of each word spelled it out how about try this. “I nudclto veebli hatt I cloud lacaulty estnanrdndu ahtw I saw danireg” same stuff now can you read it?

  112. Ariel -  December 22, 2010 - 4:32 pm

    Is there a word for being really good at reading words with letters missing (like in the game Hangman)?

  113. jo mama -  December 22, 2010 - 4:18 pm

    i love dictionary.com it helps me with every thing by the way who has a name like betty jo i feel bad for ya

  114. chris -  December 22, 2010 - 4:17 pm

    this guy is totally right. i cluod actually read this, before i unscrambled the words.

  115. L -  December 22, 2010 - 4:16 pm

    I aeradly kenw of tihs way of wtnirig wrdos, taht as lnog as the frsit and lsat lretets are in the smee pclae, you can siltl raed it. It’s on the lbales for Vtanimee Wtear XDDD

  116. betty jo -  December 22, 2010 - 4:15 pm

    i thuoght taht was so cool i treid it on all my taehcers and tehy all fuond it cool (by the way that email up there is my friends email but she lets me use it)


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