Short Phrases for Type Specimens and Testing

Short Phrases for Type Specimens and Testing

The following strings use letters that contain most of a typeface’s DNA:  aegilos , at least one capital (preferring  GRSQ ), and at least one diagonal stroke.

About this list

When I began working on The Anatomy of Type, it became clear I’d need a bank of pithy words that could be used to illustrate the distinctive characteristics of each featured typeface. With the help of tools like Nina Stössinger’s word-o-mat, combined with my wife Laura Serra’s multilingual knowledge, we built an earlier version of this list. The criteria has since expanded a bit and I added a few extra phrases.

These short strings might be useful to type makers for creating specimens, or to type users for testing fonts, when pangrams or other texts occupy too much space. — Stephen

  • Allez goûtez-la, Ray dis
  • Bezirksgeschäft
  • Blue Ridge Mountains
  • Breakfasting Goshawk
  • Egozentrika
  • Gangster Rock
  • Glycerol Rags
  • Groundwater Jigs
  • Kindergartenkloßzeit
  • Koortsachtige
  • Megabytes Fog
  • Metaalbewerking
  • Qualifying Clerks
  • Qualifying Roes
  • Questography
  • Readjusting Grovel
  • Reclassifying Goy
  • Redacting Buoys
  • Rekordflug Gas
  • Repacking Softly
  • Ringstraße Motel
  • Romantische Gasklänge
  • Rulemaking Axons
  • Salinger Youths
  • Spacewalking Quest
  • Stenographer Kiss
  • This Gargoyle Ram
  • Transmogrifier Gunnery
  • Typografiekonferenzerholungszustandsgefühle
  • Wisecracking Rolf


  • Q: Did you know I nabbed this jazzy pangram from [expletive] S. Coles?