Famous Filler Text
May 28, 2014 12:58 PM   Subscribe

Dear MeFi, other than Lorem Ipsum and The Quick Brown Fox - Do you know of any other typography related filler/non-semantic (famous and non-famous) texts? Thanks!
posted by lipsum to Writing & Language (21 answers total) 8 users marked this as a favorite
Li Europan lingues is another one.
posted by gubo at 1:01 PM on May 28 [1 favorite]

Anything in the public domain, like the Gettysburg Address or Don Quixote or the Bible.
posted by Jason and Laszlo at 1:04 PM on May 28

The Treaty of Westphalia fills space quite nicely.
posted by royals at 1:07 PM on May 28 [2 favorites]

Or that time-honoured old MetaTalk warhorse—The Treaty of Westphalia!
posted by a humble nudibranch at 1:09 PM on May 28

@royals and @jason-and-laszlo - thanks; I think I should clarify myself a bit more: I'm not just looking for a filler text - but for a filler text with a point. Lorem Ipsum is derived from Cicero, The Quick Brown Fox is a panagram. I'm looking for the history of the thing, not the functionality of a filler text. Thanks, though! The links you've posted are quite useful.
posted by lipsum at 1:09 PM on May 28
posted by thatone at 1:11 PM on May 28

@thatone hmmm... again, my focus is the History of Text. BaconIpsum has very short history before we get to the ol' Lorem Ipsum story. Thanks for trying though.
posted by lipsum at 1:14 PM on May 28

Given your comments, I'm not quite sure this is what you're looking for, but here's what came to my mind: Back when it was a print newspaper, The Onion used to use the sentence "Onlookers were surprised by the unusually large amounts of blood", repeated over & over, as a filler text. (The exact phrasing may have been different.) This basically acted like a practical joke on the reader; your eye was drawn by the phrase, wanting to know what the context was, but of course there was none. And, of course, it subverted the traditional, unobtrusive role of filler text.
posted by Johnny Assay at 1:24 PM on May 28 [5 favorites]

People used to use the sentence "Now is the time for all good men to come to the aid of the Party" to test out pens and practice typing.
posted by ostro at 1:24 PM on May 28 [4 favorites]

"Pack my box with five dozen liquor jugs" is another pangram that (according to Wikipedia) was used for font samples. I remember it from the Beagle Bros. font sets for the Apple ][.

Not sure if it fits what you're looking for, but there's also "etaoin shrdlu".
posted by mhum at 1:27 PM on May 28 [2 favorites]

@Johnny Assay - This is quite the stuff I'm looking for!
@ostro - This is *exactly* the stuff I'm looking for!
posted by lipsum at 1:28 PM on May 28

I remember a variation of ostro's in typing class, confirmed here by the Straight Dope, as "Now is the time for all good men to come to the aid of their country." Apparently it completely fills out a 70-space typewrite line!
posted by jabes at 1:31 PM on May 28 [3 favorites]

Kids writing toy file systems (as part of operating systems coursework at my school) would test with the text of Hamlet repeated many times. "have you tested with sixteen hamlets yet?" was a common phrase one evening.
posted by batter_my_heart at 2:00 PM on May 28 [1 favorite]

Meet the Ipsums, if traditional Lorem Ipsum is losing its charm.
posted by Tsukushi at 2:02 PM on May 28

There was a comic I can't find, a single frame (Far Side-style, but probably not the Far Side), which featured a close-up of a newspaper which had the following, repeated over and over, as the filler text: "Bystanders were _____ at the amount of blood." The ___ was something like "alarmed" or "amazed" or something. Does anyone recall this one?

Meanwhile, I sent the link to this AskMeFi thread, along with some Lorem Ipsum, to a friend of mine:
Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Donec eu augue porttitor, venenatis nibh nec, commodo mauris. Donec tempus velit quis neque vehicula, id eleifend nisi rutrum:

And he sent it back having been translated from Latin by gmail:
This page is required to post a comment. Please enjoy, the likelihood of the ferry, can be sterilized budget not, please start. Until the time of the U.S. or vehicles, it's not official website:

posted by Sunburnt at 3:19 PM on May 28 [1 favorite]

Big Lebowski Ipsum: Filler text that really ties the room together.
posted by mon-ma-tron at 7:15 PM on May 28

@Sunburnt - The Google translate thing is amazing. Thank you.
posted by lipsum at 8:22 PM on May 28 [1 favorite]

All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.
posted by tzikeh at 9:10 PM on May 28 [3 favorites]

"Passersby were amazed at the unusually large amounts of blood."

When The Onion had a print version they would fill spare column-inches with this sentence repeated enough times to fill it up. It was always formatted as if was a continuation of a story somewhere earlier in the issue.
posted by paper chromatographologist at 4:27 AM on May 29 [3 favorites]

Hipster Ipsum
posted by General Malaise at 7:10 AM on May 29

Dangnabbit, paper chromatographologist beat me to it (and everybody else who half-remembered it).

On a related note, have you considered the genre of the bus plunge? Or the other bloody little pieces which were used to pad out unsightly blank space, back in the predigital days of typesetting?
posted by ivan ivanych samovar at 9:18 AM on May 29 [1 favorite]

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