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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 Horsethorn Word™. Use the following examples below to find the rule.

Horsethorn Words™ Not Horsethorn Words™
LAKE OCEAN
PINHOLE CAMERA
HUMANLIKE ANIMALISTIC
APHELION PERIHELION
LUPINE FLOWER
UPLINK DOWNLINK
HAIKU RHYME
MOULIN MAUDLIN
WEAPON GUN
LOW HIGH
HOWL YELL
WHALE SHARK
PILLOW COTTON
WOMAN LADY
OPIUM POPPY
LEMON ORANGE
AMPOULE NEEDLE

And if you want to analyze, here is a CSV version:

Horsethorn Words™, Not Horsethorn Words™
LAKE, OCEAN
PINHOLE, CAMERA
HUMANLIKE, ANIMALISTIC
APHELION, PERIHELION
LUPINE, FLOWER
UPLINK, DOWNLINK
HAIKU, RHYME
MOULIN, MAUDLIN
WEAPON, GUN
LOW, HIGH
HOWL, YELL
WHALE, SHARK
PILLOW, COTTON
WOMAN, LADY
OPIUM, POPPY
LEMON, ORANGE
AMPOULE, NEEDLE
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1 Answer 1

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Horsethorn words are

Words which can be spelt using only letters which appear in the original Hawaiian alphabet.

The original alphabet included five vowels and just seven consonants: A, E, I, O, U, H, K, L, M, N, P, W.

Explanation of the title (worked out by Stiv)

Horsethorn is an anagram of 'North Shore', which is a region on O'ahu, Hawaii.

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6
  • $\begingroup$ This looks like it fits, but I wonder why they'd be called "Horsethorn Words". Googling "horsethorn" returns this question and not a whole lot else. $\endgroup$
    – F1Krazy
    Nov 22, 2019 at 10:29
  • $\begingroup$ @F1Krazy Yes, I have not figured this part out. $\endgroup$
    – hexomino
    Nov 22, 2019 at 10:42
  • $\begingroup$ @hexomino goos solve! I found this: Rot13(Vs lbh genafyngr 'ubefrgubea' sebz Unjnvvna gb Ratyvfu va Tbbtyr Genafyngr, lbh trg 'yvbnybun'. Vs lbh genafyngr 'yvbnybun' onpx sebz Unjnvvna gb Ratyvfu lbh trg 'xrrc vg gehr') $\endgroup$
    – Tonks
    Nov 22, 2019 at 11:24
  • $\begingroup$ @hexomino you are right! I'll give you the check but I'd like for you to get the reasoning behind the name "Horsethorn". $\endgroup$
    – Eric
    Nov 22, 2019 at 15:32
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ Ah, yes - @hexomino: 'Horsethorn' is rot13(na nantenz bs 'Abegu Fuber', juvpu vf n ertvba ba B'nuh, Unjnvv). $\endgroup$
    – Stiv
    Nov 22, 2019 at 16:31

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