I am to travel around England with my pH meter and related equipment. My boss gives me the following instructions as a reminder of where to visit.

D I X Y.

What does this mean, where should I go, and what am I doing?


  1. Local knowledge will undoubtedly make this easier for English people but any English speaker can theoretically solve it.

  2. England is part of the UK, not all of it. See dark red area of map.

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1 Answer 1


You have been tasked with measuring...

water quality of England's rivers. (The pH meter will measure their acidity/alkalinity.)

Your boss's 4-letter instructions...

are the names of 4 English rivers that sound like letters of the alphabet when spoken aloud:

- The Dee can be found very close to the borders of England and Wales, running through Chester.

- The Eye might be the one in Gloucestershire or the one in Leicestershire.

- The Exe flows mainly through Devon, and out to the sea at Exeter.

- The Wye is the fourth longest river in the UK, another waterway on the Welsh and English border.

I presume the order given is the order they would like you to visit these rivers.

  • 3
    $\begingroup$ Good job the instructions didn't include C, or it could be a long, long trip! $\endgroup$ Mar 13, 2023 at 9:07
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ And the reason why the question specified England rather than Britain or the UK is that there’s also a well-known river Dee in Scotland. And less well-known ones in Cumbria and Galloway. $\endgroup$
    – Mike Scott
    Mar 13, 2023 at 17:01

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