What Is the Happiest Word?

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By Maryann Yin Comment

What do you think is the happiest word?

A team of mathematicians from the University of Vermont published a paper examining 10,000 of the most frequently-used English words.

The group took this information and surveyed people; the collected data was used to rank the words according to happiness. The word “laughter” captured the number one spot and the word “terrorist” finished in last place.

Mental Floss writer Arika Okrent picked 25 words that she described as “as anchors of true quiet positivity in a sea of toothy grins.” Her selections included “interesting” (No. 172), “dinner” (No. 239) and “piano” (No. 665).

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