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This is in the spirit of the What is a Word™/Phrase™ series started by JLee with a special brand of Phrase™ and Word™ puzzles.


If a word conforms to a special rule, I call it a Nowerk Word™.

Use the examples below to find the rule.

$$\begin{array}{|c|c|}\hline \bbox[yellow]{\textbf{Nowerk Words™}} & \bbox[yellow]{\textbf{Not Nowerk Words™}}\\\hline \text{COG} & \text{PRONG}\\\hline \text{SNUG} & \text{TIGHT}\\\hline \text{MAELSTROM} & \text{WHIRLPOOL}\\\hline \text{COZY} & \text{COMFORTABLE}\\\hline \text{SPRY} & \text{AGILE}\\\hline \text{HUG} & \text{EMBRACE}\\\hline \text{LUG} & \text{HAUL}\\\hline \text{NUDGE} & \text{PROD}\\\hline \text{FLOUNDER} & \text{FLAIL}\\\hline \text{RIG} & \text{APPARATUS}\\\hline \end{array}$$

CSV Version:

Nowerk Words™,Not Nowerk Words™
COG,PRONG
SNUG,TIGHT
MAELSTROM,WHIRLPOOL
COZY,COMFORTABLE
SPRY,AGILE
HUG,EMBRACE
LUG,HAUL
NUDGE,PROD
FLOUNDER,FLAIL
RIG,APPARATUS

These are not the only examples of Nowerk Words™, a few more exist.

An Enigmatic Hint:

Counter Counter Counter

The solution to the enigmatic hint:

The hint above is supposed to mean center counter, a chess opening.

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A Nowerk Word™ is

a word of Scandinavian origin, as seen here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_English_words_of_Scandinavian_origin

The hint was very helpful, in that

another name for the Center Counter chess opening is the Scandinavian Defense. Maelstrom was the clear standout in the list, and a little googling came up with the Scandinavian link. Pretty interesting commonality, nice puzz!

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  • 8
    $\begingroup$ Aah, NOrway-sWEden-denmaRK! $\endgroup$ – Levieux Feb 8 '17 at 14:20
  • $\begingroup$ Ooh good call, super clever! Hadn't figured out the title. $\endgroup$ – puzz_aldrin Feb 8 '17 at 14:36
  • $\begingroup$ Perfect! $\!\!$ $\endgroup$ – suomynonA Feb 9 '17 at 0:52

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