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This puzzle 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 peccato word. Here is a list of peccato and not-peccato words:

PECCATO NOT PECCATO
moon star
ceil floor
agile gawk
acid basic
dig pig
you they
me them
him your
sport hobby
clone alien

And CSV version:

PECCATO;NOT PECCATO
moon;star
ceil;floor
agile;gawk
acid;basic
dig;pig
you;they
me;them
him;your
sport;hobby
clone;alien

QUESTION: What is the rule to tell whether a word is a peccato word or not?

Hint 1

it depends on the spelling of the words, not on the meanings

Hint 2

It is somehow related to the pronunciation of the word "peccato", not to its meaning.

Hint 3

Write down the alphabet. You should easily be able to find a necessary condition for a word to be a peccato word.

Hint 4 (strong hint)

the rule is related to the letter O.

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  • $\begingroup$ I tabelized it for you. $\endgroup$
    – user64580
    Dec 28, 2019 at 17:28
  • $\begingroup$ Thank you @jdrupal. As usual, I wanted to keep a table version for humans and a CSV version in case someone wants to analize it automatically. $\endgroup$
    – melfnt
    Dec 28, 2019 at 17:40
  • $\begingroup$ Sorry, included the CSV version in my edit :) $\endgroup$
    – user64580
    Dec 28, 2019 at 17:53
  • $\begingroup$ No problem, I don't have my laptop right now otherwise I would have done the table myself. $\endgroup$
    – melfnt
    Dec 28, 2019 at 18:27
  • $\begingroup$ Actually I did it on my phone, take a look at this website, ozh.github.io/ascii-tables $\endgroup$
    – user64580
    Dec 28, 2019 at 19:05

1 Answer 1

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The title is a hint:

PECCATO is pronounced similarly to "{peek/peak}-at-O". Which, leads the puzzle solver to focus on the letter 'O'. Full credit for this piece goes to Nahmid in the comments.

I believe a word is a Peccato word when:

A word contains only letters from A-O or only letters from O-Z. The letters must flow either A->Z or Z->A, only flipping the direction once (the peak letter). The peak letter must appear be in the direction of 'O'. The letter 'O' is not required for a word to be a Peccato word.

A word is Not Peccato word when:

The word contains any letter before O and after O. Or when the letters do not flow in one direction, only changing at the *peak letter.

Proof:

Peccato words should be either completely green (A-O) or completely blue (O-Z). 'O' is a wild-card letter and can be seen as either green or blue.
Peccato Words Explained Also, follow the flow of each letter in a Peccato word. The direction only changes once, at the peak letter. Flow explanation

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    $\begingroup$ I believe the title is meant to be interpreted as rot13("crrx ng B"), which clues in this answer. $\endgroup$
    – Nahmid
    Dec 30, 2019 at 20:57
  • $\begingroup$ @Nahmid Thanks. I believe you are right! I've edited my answer to add this interpretation. $\endgroup$ Dec 30, 2019 at 21:04
  • $\begingroup$ Actually the rule is a bit more complicated. Look at the word "your" that I included among the not-peccato words. You need to look for the peak harder! $\endgroup$
    – melfnt
    Dec 30, 2019 at 22:28
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    $\begingroup$ If what I think is right, your approach is good, but rot13(gur crnx vf abg arprffnevyl ng na b, vg whfg cbvagf gbjneqf na b). I think that is reasonable and it works for the given words, but it makes (already weak, imo) "peccato" a bit of a misnomer. $\endgroup$
    – M Oehm
    Dec 31, 2019 at 15:06
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    $\begingroup$ Accepted :) happy new year $\endgroup$
    – melfnt
    Dec 31, 2019 at 21:28

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