Mum''s The Word

       I pondered far longer than the subject deserved, looking for a cute title for this article, and settled upon "Mum''s The Word". This is a misnomer in a couple of different ways since the implication for the phrase is that secrecy is desired and I am telling things, not hiding them. It is also inaccurate since the word "mum" is never actually found during my investigation. The closest I could come was the use of the three letters at the end of "maximum" but that is a stretch.
       It was while entering a new book title into my database, a title which contained the word "kill", that caused the stray question to flip across my mind wondering how many books had that word in it. My mind being the way it is, this immediately led me to ponder which were the most popular words in the titles of the books I document.

       In this compendium, we have amassed a total of {{seriesCount}} series consisting of {{titleCount}} books and thus that many titles. Each title is comprised of words or numbers, {{wordUsage}} in all, including alternate titles. Thus it is from this collection that I began my investigation.

       By far, the most common word in the list is, no surprise, "the" which is used {{the_count}} times. Understandably, nothing comes anywhere close, not even "a", which is used {{a_count}} times, and "an", which is seen {{an_count}} times. In fact, the nearest competitor is "{{mostCommonNonTheWord}}", seen {{mostCommonNonTheWord_count}} times.

       Long before the days when computers with their 128-bit or higher encryption took all the fun out of code-breaking, it was important for cryptographers to keep in mind word frequency along with the ever-vital letter frequency. Just as we were taught that in English, e-t-a-o-i were the most commonly used letters, we were also taught that "the", "be", "to", "of", and "and" were the most commonly used words. (Note, the "be" is known as a lexeme and really means any of the forms of "to be" such as "is", "are", "was", "were", and such.) . Fans of cryptograms are ever aware of such things as they break the daily code in the morning paper.
       It was no surprise to find some similarity in frequency for the words used in titles but since titles are not every day speech, some variance from the norm is not unexpected. "The" is the most common but the "be" combination accounts only for {{be_count}} times. "Of" and "in" trump "to", {{of_count}} and {{in_count}} to {{to_count}}. Also of worthy comment is the ever popular conjuction "and" which shows up {{and_count}} times while its closest cousins did not show up nearly as often with "or" {{or_count}} times and "but" only seen {{but_count}} times.
...

       Outside of the common articles and prepositions and conjunctions,


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