Can you write a paragraph without using the letter Z

Can you write a paragraph without using the letter ‘Z’?


Rather than a challenging task, this should pose no problems for most people.
After all, even though I just used the word ‘task’ where I would ordinarily have used a word I would deem more appropriate, carrying connotations that relate better to the context, using the word ‘task’ might have detracted a bit from the richness of expression, but would it even have been an obtrusive word choice, had I not brought so much focus to it?
Frequency
Additionally, according to Crossword Solver there are 832 English words starting with “the verboten letter”, so as long as you avoid these words, anything goes.
It may seem like a great amount of words to avoid, but at a frequency of the verboten letter of 0.
074%, it is in fact the rarest letter in English.

Relative frequencies of letters in text.
(Image source:
Wikipedia)
The Second Edition of the 20-volume Oxford English Dictionary contains full entries for 171,476 words in current use, and 47,156 obsolete words.
[1] Assuming Crossword Solver’s account of words starting with the verboten letter is correct, the amount of words in English starting with the verboten letter in relation to the total words in current use amounts to:
[math]\dfrac{832 Ɨ 100}{171 \,476} = 0.
49 \text{%} \tag*{}[/math]

Including obsolete words it would be:
[math]\dfrac{832 Ɨ 100}{218 \,632} = 0.
38 \text{%} \tag*{}[/math]

Of course, the percentage of English words containing the verboten letter is far lower.

English with fewer verboten letters
At this point of the answer the only time I even wanted to use a word with the verboten letter was at the very beginning, when instead I used ‘task’.
Beyond that, the only frustration has been that I cannot refer to the letter directly.

Considering the British often use ‘s’ where Americans would use the verboten letter, the task of writing one paragraph without the verboten letter in British English should be stupendously easy.

What constitutes a paragraph
The task is also not very difficult on account of the ambiguity within the concept of a paragraph.
In principle a paragraph can even be a single word, which leaves us with no task at all if we ought to avoid the verboten letter in that setting.
However, a single word alone is not a paragraph, as a paragraph is a distinct section of a piece of writing, usually dealing with a single theme and indicated by a new line, indentation, or numbering.
As such, one can technically only speak of a paragraph if there are at least two paragraphs, dividing the text into sections.
Without that division, you just have text.
Hence, at a minimum you would require two words, though arguably two sentences or a set of sentences per paragraph.
Regardless, the task will only increase in difficulty as the length of text increases, but only barely.

Addendum
Despite this answer seemingly containing no verboten letter, if you looked really closely, you might have noticed I actually failed the task.
Have a look at the url of the Crossword Solver reference used:
*audible gasp*


Yes, of course I can.
That letter is one of the least common in the alphabet; It’d be much harder to write a paragraph without the letter “E”, for example.
That’s not to say it’d be impossible to write a paragraph without the letter “E”; in fact, a fellow named Ernest Vincent Wright once wrote an entire novel completely free of “E”’s.
I believe a French author also did the same thing.
However, I can recall neither his name nor the title of his book.

There.
The last letter of the alphabet doesn’t appear once in this whole answer.


Out of all the “can you write a paragraph without using the letter (insert letter here)” questions that I have seen so far this one has to be the least difficult that I have seen so far.
Apart from a few common words and subsequent phrases that letter doesn't often appear in sentences, and it is at the other end of the alphabet.
Other answers may have had more thought put into them trying not to use this letter, but I just couldn't think of anything else to write and so wrote what you see before you now


Of course I can.
Not using the last letter of the alphabet is quite easy.
In fact, it is one of the least used letters in the whole English language.
There is, quite literally, nothing hard about doing it.
You could go on and on, but I’ll leave you with this: “If I could rearrange the alphabet, I'd put "U" and "I" together.

Updated: 18.05.2019 — 8:43 pm

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