A palindrome is a word, phrase, number, or other sequence of units that can be read the same way in either direction, with general allowances for adjustments to punctuation and word dividers.

Composing literature in palindromes is an example of constrained writing. The word “palindrome” was coined from Greek roots palin (again) and dromos (way, direction) by English writer Ben Jonson in the 17th century. The actual Greek phrase to describe the phenomenon is karkinik√™ epigraf√™ (crab inscription), or simply karkinoi (crabs), alluding to the backward movement of crabs, like an inscription that can be read backwards.

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