Q: What exceptional words turn into other words by deletion of letters?

A: beheadable (delete first letter and form a word)

longest E(MOTIONLESSNESSES) P(REDETERMINATIONS) (17) longest for each letter APATHETICALLY, BLITHESOME, CHASTENINGS,

DEMULSIFICATIONS, EMOTIONLESSNESSES, FUTILITARIANISM, GASTRONOMICALLY, HEDRIOPHTHALMA, IDENTIFICATIONS, JUNCTIONAL, KINAESTHETICS, LIMITABLENESS, METHYLACETYLENES, NEOPALEOZOIC, OENANTHALDEHYDES, PREDETERMINATIONS, QUINTA, REVOLUTIONARILY, SELECTIVENESS, TREASONABLENESS, UPRAISERS, VINDICATIONS, WHENCEFORWARD, XANTHOPHYLLITES, YOURSELVES, ZOOSPORIFEROUS

longest progressive (down to a single letter) PRESTATES (9)

curtailable (delete last letter and form a word)

longest curtailable (no -s or -y) ENTWICKSLUNGROMANE

GINGLYMOARTHRODIAL PALAEODICTYOPTERAN PHOSPHOAMINOLIPIDE (17)

longest progressive COMPOSERS LAMBASTE(D,S) MACHISMOS PINDARICS (9)

alternately beheadable and curtailable (down to a single letter)

longest ASHANGOS ASTERNAL BATHINGS BRAIDERS CURATESS ESCAPEDS FLAMING(O,S)

GAMINESS LATHINGS METHANES METHINES OOBLASTS RELATERS SAGENESS SPARSEST (8)

progressive beheadable and curtailable (all subsequences words)

longest AMIDES AREARS BLOWED COPENS FANALS GAGERS LAVERS MODELS SHADES

TAVERS WAGERS (6)

terminal ellision (delete both first and last character and form a word)

longest ARHYNCHOBDELLIDA (16) (no a-) REMANCIPATION (13)

letter subtraction (delete letter anywhere and form a word)

longest progressive

CHEREMISSES, CHEREMISES, CHEREMISS, CHEREMIS, CHEREMS, HEREMS, HERMS, HEMS,

EMS, MS, S (11)

CHOROLOGIES, HOROLOGIES, OROLOGIES, OOLOGIES, OLOGIES, LOGIES, LOGES, LOGS,

LOS, OS, S (11)

GNOMOLOGIES, NOMOLOGIES, NOOLOGIES, OOLOGIES, OLOGIES, LOGIES, LOGES, LOGS,

LOS, OS, S (11)

OESTRUATING, ESTRUATING, ESTUATING, ESTATING, STATING, SATING, STING, TING,

ING, IN, N (11)

ONTOLOGIZES, ONTOLOGIES, OTOLOGIES, OOLOGIES, OLOGIES, LOGIES, LOGES, LOGS,

LOS, OS, S (11)

PUNCTULATED, PUNCTUATED, PUNCTATED, PUNCTATE, PUNCTAE, PUNCTA, PUNCT, PUNT,

UNT, UT, T (11)

SPRINKLINGS, SPRINKLING, PRINKLING, PRINKING, PINKING, PIKING, PIING, PING,

ING, IN, N (11)

charitable (all possible letter subtractions form a word)

longest BREADS BREEST FLEETS SHOOPS SHOOTS WHOOPS (6) longest progressive (all noncontiguous subsequences words) AIDES PEATS (5)

stingy (no deletion possible)

shortest PRY (3)

**** Unless noted otherwise, all words occur in Webster's Third New International Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Springfield, MA, 1961.

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