Pangram (Word Play)

fox - complete subject
The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog. (Yves Adams/Getty Images)

A pangram is a sentence or expression that uses all the letters of the alphabet. Adjective: pangrammatic. Also called a holoalphabetic sentence or an alphabet sentence.

The words in a "genuine" pangram (one in which each letter appears only once) are sometimes called non-pattern words.

The best known pangram in English is "The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog," a sentence that's often used for touch-typing practice.

"Sensewise," says Howard Richler, "pangrams are the antithesis to palindromes. For in palindromes the sense increases with the brevity of the palindromic statement; in pangrams sense usually deteriorates proportionately with brevity" (A Bawdy LanguageHow a Second-rate Language Slept Its Way to the Top, 1999).


  • Two driven jocks help fax my big quiz.​
  • Pack my box with five dozen liquor jugs
  • The five boxing wizards jump quickly
  • Bright vixens jump; dozy fowl quack
  • Jackdaws love my big sphinx of quartz
  • John quickly extemporized five tow bags
  • Waltz, nymph, for quick jigs vex Bud
  • Quick wafting zephyrs vex bold Jim
  • Brown jars prevented the mixture from freezing too quickly
  • Fred specialized in the job of making very quaint wax toys
  • New job: fix Mr Gluck's hazy TV, PD
  • Sixty zippers were quickly picked from the woven jute bag
  • We promptly judged antique ivory buckles for the next prize
  • J.Q. Schwartz flung V.D. Pike my box
  • Viewing quizzical abstracts mixed up hefty jocks
  • Farmer jack realized that big yellow quilts were expensive
  • My girl wove six dozen plaid jackets before she quit
  • My favorite proposal for a 26-letter pangram requires an entire story for comprehension (thanks to Dan Lufkin of Hood College):
    During World War I, Lawrence's Arab Legion was operating on the southern flank of the Ottoman Empire. Hampered by artillery fire from across a river, Lawrence asked for a volunteer to cross the river at night and locate the enemy guns. An Egyptian soldier stepped forward. The man was assigned to Lawrence's headquarters [G.H.Q. for 'general headquarters'--this becomes important later] and had a reputation for bringing bad luck. But Lawrence decided to send him. The mission was successful and the soldier appeared, at dawn the next morning, at a remote sentry post near the river, dripping wet, shivering, and clad in nothing but his underwear and native regimental headgear. The sentry wired to Lawrence for instructions, and he replied:
    Warm plucky G.H.Q. jinx, fez to B.V.D.'s (Stephen Jay Gould, Bully for Brontosaurus. W. W. Norton, 1992)

Pronunciation: PAN-gram

Also Known As: holoalphabetic sentence, alphabet sentence

mla apa chicago
Your Citation
Nordquist, Richard. "Pangram (Word Play)." ThoughtCo, Aug. 26, 2020, Nordquist, Richard. (2020, August 26). Pangram (Word Play). Retrieved from Nordquist, Richard. "Pangram (Word Play)." ThoughtCo. (accessed May 30, 2023).