English's Most Common Words

Vest-Pocket Vocabulary

Since so many of you will be diligently working away on your entries for the Vest-Pocket Challenge and need to conserve your precious vocabulary-related brain cells, I’m going to do something a little different on Thursdays this month and talk about vocabulary without all those delightfully arcane strange Vest-Pocket words.

Although we often imagine really fun and pretentious $10 words when we hear the term vocabulary, it really refers to nothing more than a list of available words, either in the language at large or in each of our brains.

So today I’m going to send you to check out wordcount.org, a cleverly designed presentation of the 86,800 most frequently used English words, ranked in order of commonness.

Turns out my name is word number 6,966—who knew?


You can find a complete listing of the Word Blog’s Vest-Pocket Vocabulary entries and learn more about where they come from here.

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