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My first is in donut and also in dough
My second in grew, but never in grow
My third is in famine but never in meat
My fourth is in sofa but never in seat
My fifth is in soldier, but never in sarge
My sixth is in flabby and also in large
My seventh in twentieth, not twenty-third
My whole helps with hearing before sounds are heard.

Hint:

There isn't a mistake with my seventh.

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1 Answer 1

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The poem refers to

the notes of the solfège:

My first is in donut and also in dough
My second in grew, but never in grow
My third is in famine but never in meat
My fourth is in sofa but never in seat
My fifth is in soldier, but never in sarge
My sixth is in flabby and also in large
My seventh in twentieth, not twenty-third

Do Re Mi Fa Sol La Ti (Do) = 1 octave

According to Wikipedia, "The study of solfège enables the musician to audiate, or mentally hear, the pitches of a piece of music which he or she is seeing for the first time and then to sing them aloud."

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  • $\begingroup$ While the answer make sense in english, it's confusing to me. We use 'si' rather then 'ti' in dutch. (weirdly, the 'si' seems common for roman languages, while dutch is a german language... shrugs) $\endgroup$ Commented Sep 28, 2015 at 15:11
  • $\begingroup$ I understand where does Si come from. But... where does Ti come from? $\endgroup$ Commented Sep 28, 2015 at 16:39
  • $\begingroup$ Here in Brazil we use Si too... $\endgroup$ Commented Sep 28, 2015 at 17:08
  • $\begingroup$ Si was changed to Ti so that each syllable could start with a different letter. That makes shorthand notation possible. But where does Si come from? I know the origin of the first six syllables from the hymn Ut Queant Laxis, but "Si" is unrelated so far as I can tell. No help from wiki: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solf%C3%A8ge#Origin $\endgroup$ Commented Sep 29, 2015 at 13:57
  • $\begingroup$ @dennisdeems Si comes from the next line of the same hymn (Sancte Iohannes = Saint John), but was added later. $\endgroup$ Commented Sep 29, 2015 at 17:13

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