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This puzzle is part of the Puzzling Stack Exchange Advent Calendar 2023. The accepted answer to this question will be awarded a bounty worth 50 reputation.

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Hadn't heard from the Oracle in a while until this text came in...

enter image description here

What is the Oracle trying to tell me?

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2 Answers 2

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The Oracle is...

wishing you a MERRY XMAS!

The emojis before the numbers in each line...

suggest the name of one of Santa's reindeer in Clement Clarke Moore's 1823 poem, A Visit from St. Nicholas (plus Rudolph).

COMET (3)
PRANCER (6)
RUDOLPH (1) (from kangaROO DOLPHin)
DUNDER (6) (the New York Dutch for 'thunder', what you hear in a storm)
CUPID (4)
VIXEN (3)
BLIXEM* (6) (New York Dutch for 'lightning', what you see in a storm)
DANCER (2)
DASHER (3)

* The OP points out in comments that the 'time = year' mini-rebus for 'Blixem' should prompt us to note the time that the Oracle posted the message - 18:23 - and equate that with the year of the Clement Clarke Moore poem, to reinforce the source for the alternative 'Blixem' spelling of 'Blitzen'...

The numbers...

tell you which letter of that reindeer name to extract (so COMET(3) means the 3rd letter of coMet, which is 'M'). Repeating this for all reindeer gives the answer MERRI XMAS - but the mini-rebus after 'CUPID' (i d+i+a+lick+t i.e. "i dialect", with thanks to @DanielS in comments on the other answer) instructs us to replace 'I' with its sometime-soundalike 'Y'.

The final final answer is thus MERRY XMAS!

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  • $\begingroup$ Nice job. The clock and calendar were supposed to mean rot13(gvzr = lrne, jvgu gur gvzr gur zrffntr jnf jevggra uvagvat ng gur irefvba bs anzrf gb hfr) but you got that anyway $\endgroup$
    – caPNCApn
    Dec 7, 2023 at 16:28
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    $\begingroup$ @caPNCApn Ah, that's very clever! I even wondered if there was anything hidden up there, because I know you've done things like that in the past with your Oracle puzzles :) I'll add that to the post for posterity... $\endgroup$
    – Stiv
    Dec 7, 2023 at 18:18
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The oracle is telling you

Merry Xmas

The rebus are just hinting at the 9 reindeers

In order

Comet

Prancer

Rudolph (kange Roo + Dolph in)

Donner (Ear+Lightningbolt) is a heard lightning bolt which is Thunder and Donner is Thunder in German

Cupid

Vixen

Blitzen (Eye+Lightning bolt) which is is a seen bolt which is Lightning which is Lightning in German

Dancer

Dasher

Take all the numbers with the rebus and and take the letter it corresponds to with each answer of the rebus you get

MERRI XTAS

Now the rebus for T is that time or t is equal to M (Month)

Not sure about the I to Y

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    $\begingroup$ Long time no see :) It was only when I went to click 'Post' on my answer that I spotted yours here (I'd been composing mine on mobile and spent too long trying to resolve the 'diatonguet' word...) and I see you also had trouble translating the additional rebuses as well...! Please do remember to use spoiler blocks in answers to puzzles, thanks :) $\endgroup$
    – Stiv
    Dec 7, 2023 at 7:13
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    $\begingroup$ D - EYE - A - LICK - T = dialect I think $\endgroup$
    – Daniel S
    Dec 7, 2023 at 8:45
  • $\begingroup$ Nice job. I accepted the other answer because it is a little closer to the intended solution. $\endgroup$
    – caPNCApn
    Dec 7, 2023 at 16:29

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