Words That Start With Z: Your Scrabble Cheat Sheet

Words That Start with Z

Everyone wants an extensive vocabulary. Whether you’re playing games (like Scrabble or Words with Friends) or writing a paper, knowing more words can always come in handy. When you need a zinger, words starting with Z can’t be beat. The letter Z may appear last in the English alphabet, but it comes first in many zany words! So, if you’re looking to expand your vocabulary, begin by learning a few words that start with the letter Z.

We’ve created this list of words for you, organized by the number of letters in each word. Many of these words have more than one meaning. For simplicity, we’ve only listed one definition for each word. Keep in mind, this word list doesn’t contain every single English word that starts with Z; however, it’s a useful introduction to this very special letter. 


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Here are some words that start with Z [2-15 letter words]


15-Letter Words

zoogeographical – Adjective | Pertaining to the field of study that examines the geographic distribution of animals (zoogeography)

zoophysiologist – Noun | An expert who studies the way animals’ bodies function

zoophytological – Adjective | Pertaining to the branch of zoology concerning animals that resemble plants (zoophytes)

14-Letter Words

zinckification – Noun | The process of applying a zinc coating (also spelled zincification) 

zincographical – Adjective | Pertaining to the process of engraving, photoengraving, or preparing printing surfaces on zinc

zoophytologist – Noun | An expert in the branch of zoology concerning animals that resemble plants (zoophytes) 

zooxanthellate – Adjective | Pertaining to tiny plant-like organisms found within the cells of other organisms (zooxanthella)

zygobranchiate – Adjective | Pertaining to the Zygobranchia order of marine gastropods

13-Letter Words

zinjanthropus – Noun | An individual or fossil belonging to a genus of ancient hominids from the Lower Pleistocene period

zombification – Noun | The process of turning into a zombie or becoming zombie-like

zoogeographer – Noun | Expert who studies the geographic distribution of animals (zoogeography)

zooplanktonic – Adjective | Pertaining to small animals drifting or floating in the sea or fresh water (animal plankton) 

zoosporangium – Noun | A spore case bearing independently motile spores

zygapophyseal – Adjective | Pertaining to the articular processes of the neural arch vertebrae (zygapophysis)

zygodactylism – Noun | The state of having feet with two toes facing forward and two facing backward

12-Letter Words

zincographic – Adjective | Pertaining to the process of engraving, photoengraving, or preparing printing surfaces on zinc

zoochemistry – Noun | A branch of biochemistry pertaining to the chemical processes within animals

zoogeography – Noun | A field of study that examines the geographic distribution of animals

zoologically – Adverb | In the manner of a branch of biology concerned with non-human animals 

zooxanthella – Noun | Tiny plant-like organisms found within the cells of other organisms 

zwitterionic – Adjective | Pertaining to an ion charged both positively and negatively

zygodactylic – Adjective | Having feet with two toes facing forward and two facing backward

zygomycetous – Adjective | Pertaining to fungus that reproduces using zygospores (zygomycete)

11-Letter Words

zeolitiform – Adjective | In the shape of crystalline minerals that form in cavities of igneous rock (zeolites)

zeptosecond – Noun | A sextillionth of a second

zinckifying – Verb | Coating with zinc

zwischenzug – Noun | A tactical chess move

zygodactyly – Noun | A bird with feet that feature two toes facing forward and two facing backward

zygomorphic  – Adjective | Pertaining to a flower that is only symmetrical when bisected along a longitudinal plane 

10-Letter Words

zelophobic – Noun | Fear of jealousy

zidovudine – Noun | Antiviral drug used to treat AIDS

zoothapsis – Noun | Premature burial

zootherapy – Noun | Form of therapy that uses animals

zugzwanged – Verb | Maneuvered into a chess position where any move results in a severe disadvantage

zygobranch – Noun | A creature belonging to the Zygobranchia order of marine gastropods

zygomycete – Noun | A fungus that reproduces using zygospores, belonging to the subclass Zygomycetes

9-Letter Words

zebrawood – Noun | Trees with striped wood

zettabyte – Noun | One sextillion bytes of computer storage

zibelline – Noun | Sable fur (also spelled zibeline)

zillionth – Noun | Very small fraction of something

zinfandel – Noun | Grape variety grown in California for winemaking

zirconium – Noun | A chemical element

zumbooruk – Noun | Small canon on a swiveling base

8-Letter Words

zamindar – Noun | Landowner who leased to tenant farmers in India during the time of British rule (also spelled zemindar)

zaratite – Noun | Emerald-colored mineral

zarzuela – Noun | A comical Spanish operetta 

zealotry – Noun | Excessive devotion

zenithal – Adjective | Pertaining to the highest point or acme (zenith)

ziggurat – Noun | A pyramid-shaped Mesopotamian tower

zirconia – Noun | A crystalline compound used in enamels and glazes

zirconic – Adjective | Pertaining to the element zirconium

7-Letter Words

zapping – Verb | Destroying with radiation

zealous – Adjective | Displaying excessive fanaticism

zebroid – Adjective | Pertaining to zebras

zedoary – Noun | A medicinal Indian plant in the ginger family

zelkova – Noun | Japanese elm

zemstva – Noun | District assemblies in czarist Russia

zeolite – Noun | Ion-exchanging minerals that appear in cavities of lava

zigging – Verb | Executing a zig, often contrasted with “zagging” 

zincify – Verb | To coat with zinc (also spelled zinkify)

zincing – Verb | Coating with zinc (also spelled zincking) 

zincked – Verb | Coated with zinc (also spelled zinced) 

zincoid – Adjective | Pertaining to zinc

zingaro – Noun | An Italian gypsy 

zootomy – Noun | Study of animal anatomies

zymotic – Adjective | Pertaining to fermentation

zymurgy – Noun | The branch of chemistry that deals with fermentation in brewing, distilling, or winemaking    

6-Letter Words

zaddik – Noun | A Hasidic spiritual leader

zaffre – Noun | Impure cobalt oxide or mixture, used to product blue ceramic glazes and smalt (also spelled zaffir, zaffer, and zaffar)

zaftig – Adjective | Voluptuous, full-figured

zander – Noun | A pikeperch fish 

zapper – Noun | Someone who changes the channel frequently

zareba – Noun | A Sudanese protective barrier made of thorn bushes

zebeck – Noun | A mediterranean sailing vessel (also spelled xebec)

zechin – Noun | A sequin (also spelled zecchin)

zenana – Noun | Part of a house used exclusively by women

zephyr – Noun | A gentle breeze

zeroth – Adjective | Coming before the first in a series

zeugma – Noun | A figure of speech in which one word is paired with two different words and assumes a different meaning with each combination

zibeth – Noun | Civet cat native to South and Southeast Asia

zigzag – Verb | Move forward in a series of sharp turns

zillah – Noun | An administrative district in India

zinger – Noun | Something surprising, especially a witty comeback

zinnia – Noun | A genus of flowering shrubs and sub-shrubs

zipper – Noun | A sliding fastener with metal or plastic teeth

zither – Noun | A stringed instrument

zizith – Noun | Tassels that hang from traditional Jewish religious garments 

zizzle – Noun | The hissing sound of food frying

zombie – Noun | A revived or reanimated corpse

zygoma – Noun | Cheekbone of a human skull

5-Letter Words

zamia – Noun | A genus of American plants with palm-like leaves

zanza – Noun | African musical instrument

zayin – Noun | Seventh letter of the Hebrew alphabet

zazen – Noun | Seated meditation in the Zen Buddhist tradition

zappy – Adjective | Active and energetic

zebus – Noun | Indian oxen

zesty – Adjective | Pleasingly spicy

zilch – Noun | Nothing, none, zero

zineb – Noun | Fungicidal powder, often used on fruits and vegetables

zingy – Adjective | Appealingly exciting

zinky – Adjective | Pertaining to zinc, having the characteristics of zinc (also spelled zincy and zincky) 

zippy – Adjective| Fast and lively 

zloty – Noun | Polish currency

4-Letter Words

zany – Adjective | Comically ludicrous 

zarf – Noun | A metal coffee holder used in the Eastern Mediterranean 

zein – Noun | A protein in corn that is used to make plastics, adhesives, and textile fibers

zerk – Noun | A metal fitting that enables grease to be inserted into a mechanical joint

zeta – Noun | Sixth letter of the Greek alphabet

ziti – Noun | Tube-shaped pasta

zona – None | An anatomical zone

zoon – Noun | The individual members that make up a compound organism

zori – Noun | A Japanese thonged sandal

zyme – Noun | An agent that brings about fermentation

3-Letter Words

zax – Noun | A tool used for cutting and piercing roof slates

zed – Noun | The letter “Z”

zee – Noun | The letter “Z”

zek – Noun | A prisoner in a soviet labor camp

zoo – Noun | A public exhibition of wild animals

2-Letter Words

za – Noun | Slang term for pizza

zo – Noun | Tibetan breed of cattle

By looking at this list, you may be able to identify some common prefixes. Words that start with “zoo” often have something to do with animal life. Words beginning with “zygo” often involve pairs. Understanding these linguistic patterns can help you to intuit what a word means, even when you don’t have a dictionary handy.

Use words that start with the letter zed to add some zing to your vocabulary. If you memorize this listyou’ll be able to impress your friends with zippy answers to their toughest zymotic questions. No word finder or crossword puzzle will be able to stump you. From za to zincographical, you’ll be prepared with the right Z-word for any occasion.

Click here for more Scrabble cheat sheets.


  1. http:// https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary
  2. https://word.tips/words-start-with/z/
  3. https://www.collinsdictionary.com/us/dictionary/english/
  4. https://www.thefreedictionary.com

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