Simply said. This morning I was boringly waiting for the train connection to reach my office and, weirdly, I started thinking (normally I do not think so early in the morning, and even on Mondays!).
For sure! That list of mysterious letters painted on all the Swiss trains, which I know so well, is an acronym(*). One of the million existing acronyms, for sure.
But then, once I reached my computer, I started researching.
If I am not wrong, that is the longest acronym in the world for a railway name!
The Swiss national railways have the longest acronym among all the railways of the world: SBB CFF FFS, i.e. “Swiss Federal Railways” in the three official (written) languages of Switzerland:
– Schweizerische Bundesbahnen (German);
– Chemins de fer fédéraux (French);
– Ferrovie federali svizzere (Italian).
Considering also the spaces it’s 11 characters!
I immediately informed them, the SBB_CFF_FFS, of this sudden (at least at my eyes!) achievement…I’m still waiting to be scolded for annoying them on this gewgaw matter or to be challenged on the truthfulness of this possible world record.
I think everything makes sense!
Visiting the SBB (I stay short for reciprocal convenience) website (www.sbb.ch), their headline defines themselves as the “biggest railway station of Switzerland”.
At least now they can even claim something more…majestic!
(*) Acronym (I know that everyone knows this word, but I just wanted to be sure that it’s the right one to be used in this context):
From wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Acronym): An acronym is an abbreviation formed from the initial components in a phrase or a word. These components may be individual letters (as in “laser”) or parts of words or names (as in “Benelux”).