This puzzle took me less than five minutes to compose. With luck it will take you about the same time to solve.





Find two letters that, added to the above three pairs of letters, make three cross words.

You can move the above letters apart if necessary in a horizontal direction but you must not change their order or orientation.

The added pair of letters is the same in each case and stays in the same order.

What are the three words?

Please make sure that they are cross words, not just any old set of words.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Funny one! :-D Maybe the [wordplay] tag? $\endgroup$ – Rand al'Thor Aug 23 '15 at 22:49
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ There is more than one valid answer, see below... it took me 10 sec to find and >5 min to justify all three of them as 'cross'... $\endgroup$ – smci Aug 24 '15 at 8:23
  • $\begingroup$ what are cross words? thanks! $\endgroup$ – Omega Krypton Mar 17 at 12:52
  • $\begingroup$ @Omega Krypton - 'cross' is a synonym for 'angry'. So cross words are words that you might say to express anger. The answers are all mild expletives that express anger or annoyance. $\endgroup$ – chasly from UK Mar 17 at 13:10

Are the three words:

crap, drat, and rats? By adding ra, you get words that are spoken when one is cross.

  • $\begingroup$ This has the most up-votes and is therefore the winner. It also happens to be the one that I intended when I composed the question. $\endgroup$ – chasly from UK Aug 24 '15 at 12:26

Just to be creative/contrary, here's a second equally valid solution:

letters A,R


CARP : to complain in a cross manner DART : a projectile whose tail ('flight') is cross-shaped ARTS : the main cross-disciplinary faculty in university

"Please make sure that they are cross words, not just any old set of words."

They bloody well are cross words :)

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ That's a good one +1. I think cross-discipline might be stretching it a little (?). I's interesting that you still used the letters A R. I wonder if any others are possible even for words that aren't 'cross'. $\endgroup$ – chasly from UK Aug 24 '15 at 7:48
  • $\begingroup$ @chaslyfromUK by all means please see if you can one-up me... $\endgroup$ – smci Aug 24 '15 at 8:21
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ @chaslyfromUK cope, dote, toes? $\endgroup$ – Gordon K Aug 24 '15 at 9:13
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @GordonK cape, date, tase (as in the verb to Taser) $\endgroup$ – smci Aug 24 '15 at 11:31

The two letters are

R and A


C R A P (excuse the profanity, but it's the answer)
and RATS

All three are words that

you may say when you are cross

  • $\begingroup$ Correct! Just pipped to the post by Quark! $\endgroup$ – chasly from UK Aug 23 '15 at 22:13
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ crap is not profane. it's vulgar. $\endgroup$ – moonbutt74 Aug 23 '15 at 22:31
  • $\begingroup$ I would have to say a bit of both. Also impolite. $\endgroup$ – AJFaraday Aug 24 '15 at 12:49
  • $\begingroup$ Really? Crap. Ive been saying this all the time $\endgroup$ – Omega Krypton Mar 17 at 0:59

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.