Anagramming the World, Part I

The masses have spoken: visitors to this site really like anagrams (as well as giant fungi, and heavily polluted lakes). Last week’s anagram map of the Vancouver SkyTrain metro system garnered a huge amount of views over the past week-and-a-half (as well as those other two articles, particularly the latter which has already become the most viewed article in this website’s history in under two months thanks to kind viewers from Metafilter and Reddit). The anagram map was such a hit that eventually someone came up with the brilliant idea that I should anagram an entire wall-size world map. That, of course, would take forever. I did, however, get talked into mocking up a few more maps, which led to the idea of taking maps of continents from Wikimedia Commons and messing around with them (as well, it gave me a chance to play around with SVG-format maps in Inkscape, which I’ve been meaning to learn for some time now).

The end result? It’s ‘Anagramming the World Week’ here at The Basement Geographer. How long did these all take to make? Way too long (longer than it takes to research and write a regular article, that’s for sure). But it was fun, and that’s all that matters. We’ll be rolling out maps of every continent throughout the rest of the week, all filled with randomly generated anagrams ranging from weird to profane to surreal.  Today is the first of three batches in this series (Part II is here; Part III is here). Click on each map to enlarge to full size and enjoy!


Original image source: The World Factbook,


Original image source:

And, just because:


Original image source: Tschubby,, revised by Bobo_is_soft at Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported licence.

4 thoughts on “Anagramming the World, Part I

  • First, that looks like an incredible amount of work but well done! And a nice bonus that it was fun as well. Second, "A Restrained Enema" – I laughed out loud

  • Some of these actually make sense:

    Safari Touch (South Africa) – safaris are a big tourist attraction.
    Pains (Spain) – people who invested in Spanish real estate during the now-vanished boom are feeling plenty of them.
    Aim also (Somalia) – given all the fighting in Somalia, it does help to have good aim.
    My anger (Germany) – twice in the last hundred years we've seen bad things happen when Germany gets angry.
    Owns a bat (Botswana) – quite correct for a country in which cricket is a major sport.
    Enemy (Yemen) – for sure.

    Lastly, the rather off-color anagram for Bulgaria is oddly appropriate, when you consider that the country's name begat the term "bugger."


  • There were definitely a few expletive-filled anagrams I refrained from using in these maps (even though some of them were pretty funny). Basically, if I could find it listed in my desktop dictionary, then I let it slide. I, too, was amused by some of the odd convergences between locations and their anagrams.

Comments are closed.