Monday, July 27, 2009

One-syllable word versions of "Pilgrim's Progess" and Robinson Crusoe"

John Bunyan's "The Pilgrim's Progress", first published in 1678, is considered the greatest Christian allegory in English, and one of the great works of literature. It's long .complex, and difficult to read. In order to make Pilgrim's Progress accessible to children, Lucy Aikin, using the name Mary Godolphin, created an "in words of one syllable" version of Pilgrims Progress in 1894. She also created "one syllable word" versions of other works,including " Robinson Crusoe". Names in these works are kept "as is" rather then recreated as one syllable words..

I can't find any formal term describing works written with one syllable , though of course they remind me of lipograms. Lipograms are poems,paragraphs, or longer works written without using a certain letter of letters of the alphabet, An earlier post of mine discussed Gadsby, a 50,000 word novel written without using the letter E.

Here's the one-syllable Pilgrim's Progress".

and "Robinson Crusoe"


  1. my computer doesn't have the internet plug in so I couldn't see it. I assume a one syllable book would be frustrating to read. In fourth grade my teachers had us read a children's Pilgrim's Progress titled A Dangerous Journey. It had multiple syllable words but was still annoying, so I can't imagine.
    The lipogram post is one of my favorite of yours.

  2. Thanks Mary:). I will E-mail you a couple paragraphs of Pilgrim's Progress so you can see what it looks like.