As Scrabble mavens know, players outside the US, Canada, and apparently Thailand, get to use a much longer word list. We North Americans (and Thais) are stuck with TWL, which stands for Tournament Word List. The rest of the English-speaking world gets to use SOWPODS.

SOWPODS is a combination of OSPD (Official Scrabble Players’ Dictionary) and OSW (Official Scrabble Words). Once upon a time, North America used OSPD and the UK et al used OSW. Then the UK decided to combine the lists and declare all those words  fair game. Since the resulting combination of titles–OSPDOSW or OSWOSPD–is unpronounceable, the anagram SOWPODS is used.

I don’t know why North America (and Thailand) have chosen not to use the expanded list. It seems odd. Britain is being broad-minded and allowing that American English is acceptable. Americans are insisting that only our form of English is proper.  Isn’t it usually the other way around?

In any event, the result is that British, Australian, and Kiwi Scrabble players have fully 89,060 more words to play with. WordPress won’t allow me to load such a long list in a single post. Nor will they allow me to upload a text file. (Has to be a Word DOC, which would be unwieldy. What’s up with that?) So here are some links to relevant text files. To download the text file, ou can right-click on the link and use “Save Link As” in Firefox or something similar in other browsers. Or you can simply click on the links and browse the words to your heart’s content.

Words in SOWPODS that aren’t in TWL06

Words in SOWPODS that aren’t in TWL06 – Grouped by Length


SOWPODS – Grouped by Length


TWL06 – Grouped by length