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Questions tagged [english]

Puzzles that crucially depend on some feature of the English language or that only work in an English formulation.

30
votes
1answer
4k views

The hangman game backward

So, @JLee has posted a hangman game (Hangman- No misses left) on SE. I would like to create one too, but let's do it backward - guess what was the question, with only 1 letter missing: fill in an "a"...
25
votes
1answer
2k views

Four is Cosmic!

This is a little puzzle I heard a while back from one of my mathematically inclined friends- I get the sense that it's bounced around a little, so forgive me if you've heard it. There is a sort of ...
19
votes
2answers
3k views

Alphabet splitting extraordinaire!

Here are three ways of splitting the letters of the English alphabet into two groups: 1) ABDOPQR; CEFGHIJKLMNSTUVWXYZ 2) BCDGJOPQRSU; AEFHIKLMNTVWXYZ 3) DFHIJLNOPRTUVXYZ; ABCEGKMQSW In each case, ...
18
votes
1answer
1k views

What is a Triad Phrase™?

Now that you are familiar with Cyclone Phrases™ and Scalable Phrases™, let's look at another kind of phrase. If a phrase adheres to a certain rule, then I call it a Triad Phrase™. Use the examples ...
46
votes
3answers
3k views

What is a Cyclone Phrase™?

If a phrase adheres to a certain rule, then I call it a Cyclone Phrase™. Use the examples below to find the rule. Also find the one error in the chart below. (In other words, one of the phrases below ...
38
votes
5answers
3k views

What is a Versatile Word™?

If a word has a certain property, I call it a Versatile Word™. In each of the short, unrelated sentences below, only one of the choices is a Versatile Word™. The sentences are for context only, and ...
3
votes
3answers
458 views

Make a sentence with the most different uses of the same word [closed]

Background I recently stumbled across the following grammatically correct sentence: Buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo. This sentence relies on the fact that the ...
123
votes
2answers
6k views

Hearken, now, and listen close!

Hearken, now, and listen close; I have so much to tell. Now lend an ear and do your job; you surely will excel. To find my hidden message, gaze on every word herein. While skimming through it ...
12
votes
4answers
2k views

Five words with one vowel difference

Can you find a set of 5 words in English which all differ by just one vowel? This is easiest to explain with an example: Batter. Better. Bitter. Botter. Butter Close, but "botter" isn't a real ...
21
votes
1answer
2k views

The hangman game backward #2

Hangman game backward version 2 - guess what was the question, with only 1 letter missing: fill in a "b" - I might lose control anytime, so keep me on my toes. fill in an "m" - my brothers are all ...
19
votes
5answers
2k views

What is a Surpassing Phrase™?

If a phrase conforms to a certain rule, I call it a Surpassing Phrase™. Use the examples below to find the rule. Some details to save you time: 1. Font doesn't matter. 2. The number of words ...
32
votes
4answers
2k views

What is a Scalable Phrase™?

Now that you are familiar with Cyclone Phrases, let's look at another kind of phrase. If a phrase adheres to a certain rule, then I call it a Scalable Phrase™. Use the examples below to find the ...
26
votes
3answers
2k views

Double Speak - Phrases that need rewording

Each of these phrases can be reworded into a Double Speak phrase. A Double Speak phrase has two homophones together in the same phrase. For example a "Warrior's time of rest" could also be called a "...
10
votes
2answers
3k views

Another Rebus puzzle

Solve the following rebus puzzle: I I I I I I I I I ___________ O O See also http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rebus
-2
votes
2answers
609 views

Wait wait wait wait… 1=0? [duplicate]

Wasn't quite sure if this was suitable for Puzzling; however it has a problem/puzzle in it, so decided to give it a shot. Please appropriately downvote if you feel you should. Yesterday morning I ...
-5
votes
3answers
3k views

In a plane crash who died?

In a plane crash somewhere, every single person died but two people survived. How is this possible?
52
votes
4answers
6k views

Ghotiy spelling

As some of you likely know, ghoti is an interesting spelling of the word fish. Using: ...
18
votes
5answers
2k views

From Puzzling to StackExchange

This is a variation of a game I used to play with my friends in my childhood. You are given a starting word, and using the following operations, you have to reach the target word. The solution that ...
33
votes
1answer
5k views

Why Alexa Shouldn't Teach Non-Native English Speakers About Idioms

They cost ≈ $0.00833333333333333333333333333333 each. (9) -_----_-_----- Go! Intentionally fracture your fibula! ...
16
votes
1answer
3k views

A grammatically valid sentence in English containing seven “that”'s in a row?

About 20 years ago on a forum now long gone, someone posted the above question. After people had had a chance to try it, he also posted the answer. I no longer remember the answer but really wish I ...
18
votes
1answer
3k views

My third Rebus puzzle

Solve the following rebus puzzle: L D BRIDGE See also (Rebus with Dracula) and (Another Rebus puzzle)
42
votes
3answers
2k views

And the rest is hstr!

This is an entry in the 14th Fortnightly Topic Challenge. Ha, nice, a new fortnightly challenge. What's more, it is about history! It seems that people didn't like sports that much, huh? Fortunatly, ...
15
votes
8answers
6k views

Longest Word With *Only* Repeating Character Pairs

Inspired by and Opposite of: Longest Word without repeating character-pairs The challenge is to find an English word in which every character pair appears at least twice. ("Word" does not include ...
11
votes
4answers
580 views

Bridge words - word pairs linked by the front and back

Wanted to try out a new puzzle. Doesn't seem like an original idea, so the concept may already be out there. Please let me know if so and I'll put a link back to it. Also, not sure if it will be ...
9
votes
4answers
1k views

A Quindectet of Letter Sequences!

I've been working hard on trying to solve the missing letters in this puzzle by qwertylpc, but I've discovered that in trying to figure out the lists his clues are coming from, I've come up with ...
-7
votes
1answer
4k views

What English word is always spelled incorrectly? [closed]

What word in the English language is always spelled incorrectly?
21
votes
2answers
3k views

What is an Uncopyrightable Word?™

If a phrase has a certain property, I call it an Uncopyrightable Word™. In each of the sentences below, one word is an Uncopyrightable Word™ and one is not. The sentences are for context only, ...
16
votes
1answer
1k views

The Vowel Eater

Here's a quote from a very famous book with all the vowels and punctuation removed. Can you re-assemble it? ...
13
votes
1answer
426 views

What is an Uptight™ Word?

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 an Uptight Word™. ...
10
votes
3answers
804 views

The Word Web - Clue Sixteen

<<---First clue <---Previous clue Inspiration from here. A lot of credit to @Scimonster here; we created this puzzle together. "Aha!" you exclaim, finally spotting the door - it's an ...
-3
votes
2answers
125 views

Place a single ring on the soil, Place a fir [closed]

Place a single piece of ring on the soil, Place a first stick vertically on above of a single piece of ring, Place a second stick vertically on below of a single piece of ring. What symbol did you get?...
51
votes
3answers
3k views

The Case of the Miscalculating Calculator

At the Arithmetic Company, to try and cut down labor costs the administration commissioned a calculator to be made. The calculator was produced, and in the quality control division was tested with the ...
44
votes
14answers
3k views

Almost a curse?

What am I? My last three letters serve to clarify.My first four letters are where famous people speak.Dropping all consonants, I am almost a curse. The solution is a single English word and, once ...
37
votes
17answers
5k views

What is the name of this puzzle?

The English dictionary, as you may know, is a highly mutable entity. While removing words such as irregardless might be considered a good thing, others, such as ...
60
votes
1answer
5k views

How Many Policemen?

A friend of mine presented this nifty little puzzle, he said it's from Round Britain Quiz. It goes like this: An athletics competition, arranged periodically, rewards a medal to 79 winners, 47 ...
40
votes
16answers
5k views

What is the smallest set of letters that can spell any integer? [closed]

Today my 9-year-old nephew told me that he can spell any integer in English using only 9 letters. This is how he's doing it: ...
37
votes
2answers
5k views

And and… and. And.?

This is a cool riddle, which my Maths teacher taught our class, 25 years ago. I still remember it and find it very cool. Can you create a perfectly valid English sentence, which makes perfect sense, ...
16
votes
1answer
923 views

Two lists of favorite words

My great aunt Edith keeps this list of her favorite words tacked on the refrigerator: Atlas Chance Detail Frost Hand Magnet Orange Ring Sand Tiger Winter Wolf My great uncle ...
13
votes
1answer
1k views

The Hangman Game Backwards Again

It's been a while since one of these puzzles (created by Alex, see here for the first) has shown up, and I thought some might enjoy another one. fill in an "n" - You don't need to throw me out into ...
20
votes
9answers
6k views

Why will my friend have to grow his beard out?

Knowledge required for this riddle: English-language proverbs. My friend Leonard came to me with a problem the other day. He said, “Tanner, I want to have a clean-shaven face. But every time I use a ...
5
votes
8answers
3k views

Longest Word without repeating character-pairs

What's the longest English word that doesn't contain the same two letters in a row more than once? Good word : too contains to ...
21
votes
9answers
2k views

Word Tank-chain-wheel Challenge

My niece gave me this word wheels challenges the other day and I comes up with an alternative. Here's how this challenge works: Find a word that can form another word by moving its first letter ...
13
votes
14answers
4k views

Shortest sentence with two auto-antonyms

You have to use two words that are each their own opposite (auto-antonyms, contronyms, contranyms or whatever you want to call it) in the same sentence. This means that each of the two words in used ...
8
votes
2answers
230 views

Bridge words 2 - word pairs linked by their front and back

I made a puzzle earlier (Bridge words), and thought I'd make another (encouraged by a request from @VictorHenry). Find a pair of "bridge words" to fill in the gaps of the sentences below. Bridge ...
8
votes
11answers
1k views

Large and in charge [closed]

Opened or closed, I continue to be. A mechanism of choice, But I can be beastly. I come in all shapes and sizes, Each with a common task. I cling to life by a thread, What am I, I ask? Added hint: ...
7
votes
6answers
9k views

Words with most and fewest syllables for given length?

What is the greatest and least number of syllables that a word of a given length can have? More precisely, for each word length from 1 letter to 20 letters, find words of that length containing as ...
6
votes
1answer
165 views

Falcon Circus, Prologue: The Twins

You get home from work, grab the mail, take off your coat, and sit down on the couch with the TV on the news. "Bills, bills, junk..." you sift through your mail, and stop to look at a very colorful ...
22
votes
1answer
2k views

Riddle - He who holds the answer may enter

Here's a riddle I used in a game some time ago. Not the best riddle ever, but we had fun solving it. It was written on a translucent door, on the frame of which was written "He who holds the answer ...
21
votes
4answers
2k views

Rarer for younger, yet also the opposite

I am a common word that refers to a person. I rarely refer to very young people – in fact, the older a person is, the more likely they are to be called me. However, if you pick two random ...
17
votes
2answers
1k views

What is an Efficient Phrase™?

If a phrase adheres to a certain rule, then I call it an Efficient Phrase™. Use the examples below to find the rule. If you liked this puzzle, try others like it:     What is a ...