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Reverse Pair (Emordnilap)

An emordnilap (palindrome spelled backwards) is a word that can be read differently in reverse – it is read one way forward and another way backwards. They are sometimes referred to as a reverse pair.

Reverse Pairs (Emordnilap Words)

Below please find a list of reverse pairs. If we missed one, please use our comment form to let us know.

am – ma Noel – Leon
are – era not – ton
avid – diva now – won
bad – dab nuts – stun
ban – nab on – no
bard – drab pal – lap
bat – tab pals – slap
bats – stab part – trap
bonk – knob parts – strap
brag – garb pay – yap
bud – dub peek – keep
buns – snub peels – sleep
but – tub pets – step
cod – doc pin – nip
dab – bad pins – snip
dad – bad pit – tip
dam – mad pools – sloop
decaf – faced pot – top
decal – laced pots – stop
deer – reed rail – liar
deliver – reviled rat – tar
denim – mined rats – star
Dennis – sinned raw – war
desserts – stressed reed – deer
devil – lived regal – lager
dew – wed repaid – diaper
dial – laid reviled – deliver
diaper – repaid reward – drawer
diva – avid room – moor
doc – cod sag – gas
dog – God saw – was
doom – mood sinned – Dennis
dot – Tod slag – gals
drab – bard slap – pals
draw – ward sleek – keels
drawer – reward sleep – peels
dub – bud sloop – pools
edit – tide sloop – pools
eel – Lee snip – pins
emit – time snoops – spoons
era – are snub – buns
evil – live snug – guns
faced – decaf spam – maps
flog – golf span – naps
flow – wolf spat – taps
gals – slag spoons – snoops
garb – brag spots – stops
gas – sag stab – bats
gel – leg star – rats
gnat – tang step – pets
God – dog stew – wets
golf – flog stool – loots
gum – mug stop – pots
guns – snug stops – spots
keels – sleek strap – parts
keep – peek stressed – desserts
knob – bonk stun – nuts
laced – decal tab – bat
lager – regal tang – gnat
laid – dial tap – pat
lap – pal taps – spat
Lee – eel tar – rat
leg – gel ten – net
Leon – Noel tide – edit
liar – rail time – emit
live – evil tip – pit
lived – devil Tod – dot
loots – stool ton – not
ma – am top – pot
mad – dam trap – part
maps – spam tub – but
may – yam tub – but
mined – denim war – raw
mood – doom ward – draw
moor – room was – saw
mug – gum wed – dew
nab – ban wets – stew
naps – span wolf – flow
net – ten won – now
nip – pin yam – may
no – on yap – pay

Source Fry, E.B., Ph.D. & Kress, J.E., Ed.D. (2006). The Reading Teacher’s Book of Lists 5th Edition. San Francisco, CA: Jossey Bass.

36 comments… add one

  • Great list! Can’t think of another word to add to your list.

    Reply
  • Thanks for this useful post.

    Reply
  • Thanks for sharing this information – great stuff!

    Reply
  • Author, why not add the word you mentioned, viz. emordnilap——as a palindrome of palindrome ?

    Reply
    • Emordnilap is an emordnilap of palindrome, not a palindrome of palindrome 🙂 but ya it should be included

      Reply
  • pans – snap

    Reply
  • Bad and Dad are not a reverse pair.

    Reply
  • Ummm… Bad is not dad backwards. Dad is dad backwards. Bad is the emordnilap of dab. Great list though! 🙂

    Reply
  • “bad – dad” should actually be “bad – dab”

    Reply
  • Bad – Dab

    You guys accidentally put Bad – Dad

    Reply
  • bad-dad : this doesn’t work

    Reply
  • bad – dad isn’t one. It would be bad – dab.

    Reply
  • I think the fourth pair was intended to be bad — dab. Having dad as the second word doesn’t make sense.

    Reply
  • Dad-bad are not emordnilaps.

    Reply
  • I can’t think of a single word but what about “Madam, I’m Adam” or “Madam in Eden, I’m Adam”

    Reply
  • Noticed you put “dad – bad” which is incorrect.
    Yours sincerely,
    The Emordnilap police

    Reply
  • Bad and dad are not emordnilaps, dad is a palindrome.

    Reply
  • rennet-tenner
    sports-strops
    spacer-recaps
    steels-sleets
    yard-dray
    trig-grit
    prat-tarp

    etc., etc.

    Reply
  • dad is not bad backwards

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    • Great catch! I just updated the post to correctly reflect the word, dab. TY!

      Reply
  • No parts – Strap on

    Reply
  • Sam All = Llamas
    My son figured this out while not paying attention in 10th grade English. Yes, his name is Sam All

    Reply
  • You could add bun-nub

    Reply
  • Pan – Nap
    Gateman – Nametag

    Reply
  • Animal=lamina

    Reply
  • gateman – nametag

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  • spot – tops

    Reply
  • tug-gut
    spar-raps
    spank-knaps
    spot-tops
    snap-pans
    snaps-spans
    snips-spins
    snit-tins
    snot-tons
    stub-buts
    spool-loops

    Reply
  • LEER | REEL

    Reply
  • Know wonk

    Reply
  • Nap and pan

    Reply
  • loop/pool

    Reply
  • pool–loop
    tool–loot
    evil–live
    meat–team
    tab–bat
    stanley yelnats–stanley yelnats

    Reply
  • spin-pins
    skin-kins
    part-trap
    stab-bats
    lain-nail

    Reply
  • wets-stew
    ward-draw
    won-now

    Reply

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