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anagram

anagram [Gr., = something read backward], rearrangement of the letters of a word or words to make another word or other words. A famous Latin anagram was an answer made out of a question asked by Pilate. The question was Quid est veritas? [What is truth?], and the answer Est vir qui adest [it is the man who is here]. An anagram that reads the same backward as forward is a palindrome, e.g., "Able was I ere I saw Elba."

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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