Tea has a lot of uses.  Today, I’m exploring a new concept – tea as the focus of a word game.  How many words contain the word “tea?”  T-E-A.  More than you might think.  I have been giving a lot of thought to words that contain “tea.”  It just shows how much tea there is in society, even if not literally.

You can do this several ways.  One is having the word “tea” embedded within another word, as in steam.  That’s pretty hard.  Another way is to have the letters listed in order, but not necessarily contiguously, as in tableau.  That’s not as hard.  It’s no fun if the letters T, E, and A are scrambled up within a word.  Far too easy.  The fewer letters in a word, the harder it gets.

Let’s start with eight-letter words containing “tea”.  I can think of only one in which “tea” is embedded – bedstead.  If you’re going the less-difficult route, how about bacteria, hysteria, outbreak, or literary?  That’s not too bad.

There are a ton of seven-letter wordsTeacher, for starters.  Instead, tearful, chateau, and stealth all qualify.  Let’s not forget oatmeal, lateral, eternal, notepad, antenna, and hothead.  Or, how about steward, streaky, and gateway?  I personally like stellar.

Six-letter words…let’s see…  Steady and steamy.  Teased.  Do teacup and teapot count?  Tenant, treaty, thread are three more.  And stream and streak.

For five-letter wordsteach, tears, teary, tease, steam, and steal, on the one hand.  And tread, treat, and tweak, on the other.

Four-letter words are really hard.  I could only come up with two – tear and team.  And teas, but plurals make it too easy.

There is only one three-letter word containing “tea”, and that’s…tea.  Tea is a three-letter word.  Trying to come up with one- and two-letter words would be just plain silly.

If we try for words with a lot of letters, the list goes on and on.  Computerization, lightheadedness, sentimental, nontransferable, materialization, entertaining, contemporary, contemplate, hypothetical, deteriorate, apothecary, counteract, bloodstream…you get the picture.

My two favorites are caterpillar and amphitheater.  Caterpillar is just a cool word.  What other creatures start out as a pathetic life form with minuscule feet and grow wings?  It contains “tea” to top it off.  I like amphitheater because amphitheater contains “tea” both forwards and backwards.  Amphitheater and amphitheater.

What words can you think of that contain “tea”?

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