# Cryptic Rebuses Hit the Books

In order to learn more about Emily Dickinson and T. S. Eliot, who made cameos here and here, cryptic rebuses are going to the library.

If you're unsure how cryptic rebuses work, you may want to check out this primer.

Because these sets are usually answered collectively, I will post a community wiki answer that anyone can add to, but feel free to post your own partial solutions.

*I don't own any of the images from which I drew in making these puzzles. Where possible I tried to use public domain images. I believe I may be using the rest in accordance with fair use.

P.S. I hope these puzzles inspire you to read more. At the very least, check out this poem. After all, it's a rebus of sorts.

• The clicked image is zoomable. Jan 9, 2017 at 14:08
• Can you put the roman numerals from 12 in a comment? Still can't read it. Jan 9, 2017 at 14:10
• MCLVMXXIX, apparently
– Rubio
Jan 9, 2017 at 14:13
• 12 reads "Composed MCLVMXXIX improperly or properly" Jan 9, 2017 at 14:14

1.

LOOK UP ([def] Use a dictionary to discover the meaning of; LOOK printed UPwards) @Rubio

2.

SCARLET LETTER ([def] stigma; SCARLET(t)[Johannson] + LETTER[character]) @Rubio
(see addt'l notes by @Neil W)

3.

TOKEN ([def] perfunctory; The Lord of the Rings without L and I = Tolkein without L and I = Token) @Piotr Pytlik

4.

ADDENDUM ([def] back bit; ADD[sum] + END + UM[backwards $\large\text{μ}$]) - @Neil W

5.

THE ALEPH ([def] $\Large{א}$; [ddef] "The Aleph," a short story by Argentinian author Jorge Luis Borges in which the titular "Aleph" is a point in space that contains all other points) (thanks @karobar)
Serendipitously, the Brazilian novel Aleph invokes the same concept of the Aleph. @Rubio

6.

A SERIES OF UNFORTUNATE EVENTS ([def] Kids books by L[emony] S[nicket] (né D[aniel] H[andler]); the 3 titles do, indeed, represent a series of unfortunate events) @Ria

7.

THE THEATRE AND ITS DOUBLE, by Antonin Artaud ([def] essay collection that inspired a movement; THE THEATRE x2) @Rubio

8.

EXERCISES IN STYLE, by Raymond Queneau ([def] What the head of the Oulipo movement (Queneau) does to stay fit; EXERCISES[PUSH-up, PULL-up, SIT-up] in STYLE) @Neil W & @ChrisCudmore

9

GOGOL ([def] designer of Arabesques (a book); Googl(e)[mostly]*[grotesque]) @user2390246

10.

THE MAN WITHOUT QUALITIES ([def] (image); a novel by Modernist author Robert Musil, whose character, assuming he does lack all qualities, defies description) @Neil W

11

THE CASTLE - Franz Kafka ([def] 0-0 (chess notation for castling); Kafka died before finishing the novel, hence the unfinished name) @user2390246

12.

ORWELL ([double rebus] Composed "MCLVMXXIX improperly" = wrote MCMLXXXIV (1984); OR + WELL[properly] = Orwell) @Neil W

13.

COGITO ERGO SUM ([def] What's certain; COGITO[I think, for Cicero] + ERGO[so] + SUM[+]).
Descartes declared this (trans: I think therefore I am) as the only thing one can be certain of—the fact that one is thinking proves with absolute certainty that one exists). @ChrisCudmore

9

Gogol. Def = "designer of arabesques". Anagram of Googl (Google mostly)

11

The Castle, by Franz Kafka. Def = 0-0 (chess notation for castling). KAF = Kafka, unfinished. Kafka died before finishing the novel.

• Well done on these! Jan 9, 2017 at 17:09
• Wow! Well done.
– Rubio
Jan 9, 2017 at 17:16
• Well done! I knew it was Kafka, but couldn't get my head around the half name.. Jan 9, 2017 at 18:07
• really good job. Jan 10, 2017 at 10:26
• Thanks all. I think it's interesting that these two were left to last - I would have really struggled on some of the others. Lots of good solving done by others to get the rest! Jan 10, 2017 at 10:49

1.

LOOK UP ([def] Use a dictionary...of; K O O L, read UPwards)

2.

SCARLET LETTER ([def] stigma; Johannson=Scarlet; character=letter)

5.

THE ALEPH ([def] $\Large{א}$; [ddef] The Aleph (a short story by Argentinian author Jorge Luis Borges), in which the titular "Aleph" is a point in space that contains all other points) (thanks @karobar)
Also, the Brazilian novel Aleph which has the same concept of the Aleph.

7.

THE THEATRE AND ITS DOUBLE ([def] essay collection...movement; "the theater" + its double)

• I would think that the aleph clue may instead refer to "The Aleph" by Jorge Luis Borges, an Argentine. Jan 9, 2017 at 16:11
• @karobar I think that would defeat the point of "the point".
– Rubio
Jan 9, 2017 at 16:16
• @Rubio, karobar is correct. I think you just misidentified the country of origin and the type of work (it's a short story, not a novel). Your quoted description about "the point that contains the universe" is correct—it's from the story. Jan 9, 2017 at 16:32
• Interesting. I was referencing Aleph which is a novel, by a Brazilian author, and has the line I quoted. I think you serendipitously have a clue that has two solutions :) Borges' short story came first (and no doubt was the inspiration) so I'll update
– Rubio
Jan 9, 2017 at 16:35

6)

A Series of Unfortunate Events ([def] books that all have title of unfortunate events and a book series by Lemony Snicket (real name Daniel Handler))

1.

LOOK UP ([def] Use a dictionary to discover the meaning of; LOOK wrtten UPwards)

2.

SCARLET LETTER ([def] stigma (A red 'A' is worn to shame an adultress in The Scarlet Letter, novel by Hawthorne); SCARLET(T) Johannson + character = LETTER)

3.

TOKEN ([def] perfunctory (as in effort); No L or I in "The Lord of the Rings", remove L and I from Tolkein)

4.

ADDENDUM ([def] back bit; sum = ADD + END + backwards mu (UM))

6.

A SERIES OF UNFORTUNATE EVENTS ([def] Books by Lemony Snicket (aka Daniel Handler); A Death in the Family, Death of a Salesman, The Plague (literally that))

8.

WORKS OUT IN STYLE ([def] Oulipo is a literary movement where texts were to be written in a constrained style; push- pull- sit- up to keep fit (a work out) in 'style')

10.

THE MAN WITHOUT QUALITIES ([def] Modernist Novel by Musil = Man who defies description)

12.

ORWELL ([def] Composed "MCLVMXXIX properly" = Wrote MCMLXXXIV = 1984; OR + properly (WELL) = Orwell)

• I came to that conclusion on 12 as well, but it just doesn't seem satisfying to me. Jan 9, 2017 at 15:03
• No I can't see the link. Thought someone else might. Jan 9, 2017 at 15:09
• @ChrisCudmore I think it is rational, it is a mix of valid and invalid notation as the phrase implies. Jan 9, 2017 at 15:17
• d'oh it's obvious! Jan 9, 2017 at 15:21
• Well. that works ... hehe
– Rubio
Jan 9, 2017 at 15:24
1. Token ([def] something that is done as an indication or a pledge; "The lord of the Rings" without the letters I and L. Written by Tolkien, removing I and L gives Token)

8.

EXERCISE DE STYLE def: Work By Raymond Queneau , head of the OLIPOU movement. To Stay fit cues exercise, and Style is hidden in the gibberish. But it still needs work. see: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oulipo

13.

COGITO ERGO SUM ("I Think" for Cicero - Cogito) + (so) + SUM (Visual Rebus). I Think therefore I am -Descartes - Meaning that the only thing that is certain is what he perceives in his own head.