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My last blog post dealt with pair isograms: words, names, or phrases such that every letter they contain appears exactly twice. Examples in English include “sestet,” “intestines,” and “happenchance.” However, faithful readers of this blog have no doubt been wondering: what about pair isograms in Latin? (Or maybe they haven’t been wondering that. As my wife would be the first to attest, I’m not a mind reader.)

In Latin, as in English, most pair isograms fall into one of two trivial categories: palindromes (ecce meaning “behold,” esse meaning “to be,” suus meaning “his/her,” massam meaning “mass, burden [accusative]”) and repetitive words (quamquam meaning “nevertheless,” quotquot meaning “however many,” caecae meaning “blind [feminine plural],” testes meaning “witnesses”). These are all perfectly valid pair isograms, of course, just not very interesting.

However, I’ve also found some interesting ones. Here’s a list of some nontrivial pair isograms in Latin, each at least eight letters long:

ACCESSAE – “approached, reached” [feminine plural of participle of accedere]
APPARERE – “to appear”
APPELLARER – “I was being addressed” [passive imperfect subjunctive of appellare]
CONSENESCO – “I become old”
EMENDANDAM – “correcting” [feminine accusative of participle of emendare]
IMMORIOR – “I die [in]” (a deponent verb)
INSANIAS – “insanities” [accusative plural of insania]
INSTANTIAS – “presences; urgencies” [accusative plural of instantia]
MATERTERAM – “maternal aunt” [accusative of matertera]
PRORIPIO – “I snatch, I tear”
SENTENTIIS – “thoughts, feelings” [dative or ablative plural of sententia]
SORORIIS – “sisterly” [dative or ablative plural of sororius]

If anyone knows any other examples, please feel free to leave them in the comments!

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