14
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All in all: out of bed! Time the morning to greet!
Minus one and the statesman is losing his seat.
Minus two: it's a hue or a kind of a smirch.
Minus three, in a way, nothing short of a perch.
Minus four, time to flee! Run away in defeat!
Minus five, a big rat a king's daughter might meet.

The answer is a single English word.

Added the trivia tag for the last line.

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  • $\begingroup$ Do we rearrange letters between words? $\endgroup$ – Chris Cudmore Jan 13 '17 at 19:30
  • $\begingroup$ @ChrisCudmore No rearrangement needed. $\endgroup$ – Hugh Meyers Jan 13 '17 at 19:43
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ This seems like a deluxe version of the Add-A-Gram. $\endgroup$ – GentlePurpleRain Jan 13 '17 at 20:58
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ And, just to be clear, minus N+1 is always obtained by removing one letter from minus N (rather than each being an independent subtraction from the original word)? $\endgroup$ – Gareth McCaughan Jan 14 '17 at 13:16
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @GarethMcCaughan Good question. I missed Add-A-Gram so maybe this is misleading. Each line is an independent operation on the original word. $\endgroup$ – Hugh Meyers Jan 14 '17 at 16:07
6
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The answer is

ROUST.

All in all: out of bed! Time the morning to greet!

Definition of ROUST.

Minus one and the statesman is losing his seat.

The statesman is OUSTed.

Minus two: it's a hue or a kind of a smirch.

RUST can be a colour or a smirch.

Minus three, in a way, nothing short of a perch.

ROST - one letter short of a roost.

Minus four, time to flee! Run away in defeat!

The fleeing army is in a ROUT.

Minus five, a big rat a king's daughter might meet.

ROUS

princess bride


Feedback section

Excellent riddle. Once I got the right answer, pretty much everything fell into place perfectly; nothing else could have fit the clues.
I got the last line first (being a fantasy buff probably helped - I'd had that particular work in mind for a long time even when I was thinking the answer would be PEA), and then the second-to-last line followed quite easily as the two words are similar.
At that point I was confused, having assumed each line described a word with one fewer letter than the previous line. But the singular version fit better than the plural for the second-to-last line, and I had a niggling feeling that maybe the numbers referred to positions rather than numbers of letters. And when I tried this idea, it worked perfectly right away.

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  • $\begingroup$ Well done! My sincere congratulations! $\endgroup$ – Hugh Meyers Jan 14 '17 at 18:32
  • $\begingroup$ @Hugh Aha, that fits! Answer completed and feedback section added. $\endgroup$ – Rand al'Thor Jan 14 '17 at 18:37
  • $\begingroup$ Oh, very nice. I fell into (I think) the same trap as just about everyone else -- I thought it was a matter of removing more and more letters for each line. I'm not sure whether that was a deliberate red herring (if so, I think maybe a little unfair?) or accident. $\endgroup$ – Gareth McCaughan Jan 14 '17 at 19:48
  • $\begingroup$ @GarethMcCaughan I meant to leave the meaning of the minuses up in the air but I didn't mean to positively imply something other than the actual solution. I'm not sure why pretty much everyone took the same wrong path at first. Maybe the similarities to Add-A-Gram (which I hadn't seen) or maybe the word "successive" in the title was a poor choice. $\endgroup$ – Hugh Meyers Jan 15 '17 at 9:52

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