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Using textwidth (tw=74) a word will be moved to the next line (with an indent usually) with a newline character at the end of the line avoiding over-length. This is a hard wrap, and resizing the window will not change the location of the wrap. Using :set wrap, soft wrapping sends the text that would fall off the right side of the window to the next line instead, keeping all of a line's text visible. I'd like to combine some of each function, such that a word moves entirely to the next line after a certain point, but does not get permanently sent there in the file with a newline character.

It doesn't matter if this sending to the next line occurs only immediately after a string broaching the set number of columns.

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I think you're looking for the 'linebreak' option:

:set linebreak

See :help 'linebreak' for details.

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