The World's Longest Place Name




Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwyll-llantysiliogogogoch


This is the name of a town in North Wales. The name translates as "The church of St. Mary in the hollow of white hazel trees near the rapid whirlpool by St. Tysilio's of the red cave" in Welsh, has long claimed the fame of having the longest name in the world. However, there is a hill in New Zealand called

Taumatawhakatangihangakoauauotamateapokaiwhenuakitanatahu

This Maori mouthful translates into English as "the place where Tamatea, the man with the big knees, who slid, climbed and swallowed mountains, known as 'landeater,' played his flute to his loved one." I consider this a lean short-story, however, and have serious reservations about giving New Zealand the gold, especially without photographic evidence. But you may count it if you like.

However, before you make up your mind, consider the favorite of the Guinness Book of Records, the name of Bangkok (Krungthep) in Thai:

Krungthepmahanakonbowornratanakosinmahintarayudyayamahadiloponoparatanarajthaniburiromudomrajniwesmahasatarnamornpimarnavatarsatitsakattiyavisanukamphrasit
The translation here is pretty much the unabridged history of the city rather than a word.
krungthep mahanakhon
The land of angels, the great city of
amorn rattanakosin
immortality, various of devine gems,
mahintara yudthaya mahadilok pohp
the great angelic land unconquerable,
noparat rajathanee bureerom
land of nine noble gems, the royal city, the pleasant capital,
udomrajniwes mahasatarn
place of the grand royal palace,
amorn pimarn avaltarnsatit
forever land of angels and reincarnated spirits,
sakatattiya visanukram prasit
predestined and created by the highest devas.

Again, we have no pictures of a welcome sign on the road leading into Bangkok and, besides, what is Bangkok? How many names do we allow places? Could my hometown, Lewisburg, simply vote to add another name, say,

theweeburgbythesusquehannawiththebeautifulthreeglobestreelightsandbucknelluniversiyandthepennsylvaniahousefurniturecompanyandthefederalprisonwherejimmyhoffaresided

and, leaving out the spaces and punctuation, take the lead? Enough already!