Questions tagged [language]

A puzzle that heavily depends on linguistic features; for instance it may concern foreign languages, or only work in some particular language, or be built around a peculiarity of the English language.

Filter by
Sorted by
Tagged with
28
votes
1answer
864 views

The lamest rhyme I ever wrote

The lamest rhyme I ever wrote Was one involving Don Quixote. No, wait, a lamer one than that, The famous movie Chocolat. But maybe even lamer still, The butchering of "centre-ville". And ...
7
votes
1answer
729 views

An Italian rebus

How is Giovanni doing? lunedì martedì mercoledì giovedì sabato domenica
8
votes
2answers
334 views

What alphabet is this?

You find yourself trapped on a strange planet, whose residents use an English alphabet made of English symbols. You are given a piece of paper with the following sentences in it. ...
16
votes
4answers
529 views

Enough of this charade! A common property puzzle

Below are three sets of three words. Each word shares a common linguistic property. The words in each set share a nested property. Identify the properties and explain. Lift Beams Destroy ...
2
votes
1answer
218 views

What phonetic word form can generate the largest number of valid English words when adding single vowel sounds?

If you take the phonetic word form /fl* (where * denotes any vowel sound), you can create (at least) 6 valid English words: flay, flee, fly, flow, flue, flaw. Which single-vowel phonetic word form ...
9
votes
1answer
538 views

The hangman game backward #8

Hangman game backward #8 - guess what was the question: fill in "d" - It does something horrible to the sand and stones, but it did the opposite to us. fill in "f" - To some it's rapidly dangerous, ...
8
votes
1answer
540 views

Homophone Challenge

There are three words that sound the same But each has a different name One of the earliest words spoken by a baby, usually repeated twice. A part of speech hard to classify, sometimes used to show ...
11
votes
3answers
7k views

Egg Yolk Riddle

I remember this from when I was in highschool (or the dutch equivolant). The teacher of my english class proposed this riddle and a lot of people had it wrong but the answer was really simple. ...
2
votes
1answer
156 views

Can you think of any exceptions to the following rules? [closed]

A. The word ‘the’ is not used with the names of people. B. The past simple form of the verb is only used to describe finished events or states. C. The word ‘some’ is used in statements; the word ‘...
10
votes
1answer
409 views

Sequence dependent on my place

I currently stand on point A, somewhere in Europe. When I do my sequence here and if I start with 25, I get the following sequence: 25, 13, 7, 5, 4, 4, 4, 4, x, ... When I step a few metres to ...
8
votes
2answers
994 views

The hangman game backward #7

Hangman game backward #7 - guess what was the question: fill in a "d" - If this is marked on the calendar, you might be in some trouble. fill in a "h" - Google picture of this, you'll find mostly ...
10
votes
1answer
736 views

Figure out the language

I recently watched a documentary where they talked about messages sent into space and how they imagined aliens figuring out how to understand them. They used math and geometry in clever ways. I ...
6
votes
1answer
555 views

Yet another backwards hangman

Insprired by the previous backwards hangman (created originally by Alex, see here), which was solved so quickly, I though I'd make another one. Hopefully slightly harder! Three solutions in a minute ...
3
votes
2answers
255 views

Mixed Backwards Hangmen

My previous backward hangman (created originally by Alex, see here), was still solved too quickly, so I thought I'd make another tweak to make it a bit more tricky. This time, whatever the bizarre ...
4
votes
1answer
319 views

The longest word that includes numbers that can be changed with letters in different languages

Let me take the English word "stone" as an example: Replacing the string "one" by the corresponding number "1" allows me to write stone as st1 In Dutch, "stone" is translated to "steen" and "one" ...
9
votes
12answers
2k views

The ANEMONE puzzle

The word ANEMONE has only seven letters, but four syllables; this gives $1.75$ letters per syllable on average. Can you find another English word with that is not a proper name that has at least ...
3
votes
5answers
705 views

In yellows and blacks

In yellows and blacks, He often lives on racks, He loves none but Penny. Hint:
8
votes
1answer
533 views

Message to Survivors

Your spaceship pulls out of uberdrive (a new transportation mode that has overtaken hyperdrive in the space exploration market) and you find yourself gazing at the beauty of Earth for the first time ...
6
votes
1answer
510 views

The hangman game backward #6

Hangman game backward version 6 - guess what was the question: fill in a "d" - I am a magical device that you can convert energy with the tip of your fingers. fill in a "g" - You can hear, under one ...
8
votes
2answers
1k views

The Magician's Card Game

A magician by the name of Jason carries a deck of cards with him everywhere he goes. He has a game where you can say any phrase and a specific card will correspond with that phrase. The goal of the ...
21
votes
2answers
964 views

Letter to the Editor

These are clues to two-word phrases that all have something in common: Sustainable power Fair-haired countess Nice bull’s-eye Furious swashbuckler Quiet spoon Peculiar heirloom Understated whiskers ...
22
votes
3answers
1k views

To have and to hold

I found this odd list in an abandoned shack, tucked into the first few pages of the Divine Comedy. Can you help me figure out what exactly this person was collecting? The compendium of organs and ...
4
votes
3answers
974 views

Friend gave me a note I am not sure how to read. What does it say?

Tim Hansen gave me a note last week as we were leaving lunch and heading back to work. The paper was folded into quarters, and there were no directions to help understand what was written in the ...
3
votes
2answers
2k views

Backwards Hangman

All credits to @Alex for inventing this type of puzzle with the original and the sequel. Guess an "R" - I can only be spelled right. Guess an "F" - Lots of me took place in the world wars. Guess an "...
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 ...
2
votes
2answers
4k views

Better word search building - Filling Space

I have been unsatisfied with the quality of word searches I am producing. I've been filling the squares that are empty after the words are placed with random letters. Too many of the empty squares ...
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 ...
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, ...
9
votes
2answers
2k views

What do these words have in common, and where?

What do the following have in common? India, black, $10^{-6}$, many, south (More or less the same process can be applied to all of them to get very similar and related results.)
8
votes
2answers
941 views

The hangman game backward #5

Hangman game backward version 5 (Aggie's version was #4) - guess what was the question: fill in an "a" - It's a lethal to throw and it's destructive. fill in a "d" - It's brave, and it's strong. ...
7
votes
1answer
688 views

Guess the book/movie?

What book am I talking about (this book has been made into a movie too)? 'c'lee_&_le_choke l8_(! - ial)ee Once the puzzle has been solved it will be easy to ...
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 ...
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 ...
9
votes
1answer
270 views

A bit of a retread

Here are a series of clues to two-word phrases. Anxious Sweets Prize Storage Tightly Packed Weapons Fly Flavor Container Cover Boring Performer Ominous Feeling Dishonest Track Spring Spud Ardent ...
21
votes
2answers
2k views

The hangman game backward #3

Hangman game backward version 3 - guess what was the question: fill in "d" - Your white shirt soaked with my blood but you wouldn't care. fill in "n" - It will be nice to have it on table or bedside. ...
16
votes
1answer
925 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 ...
19
votes
3answers
5k views

Too Many Damn Buffalos [closed]

"Buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo" The sentence above is an actual sentence which makes perfect sense and is not wrong. The word "Buffalo" has three meanings: ...
3
votes
3answers
291 views

Categories within Categories

Each of these sets of five words has an odd member out. The other four words fall under a specific category, which can then be further generalized with a single word. Once you discover each of the ...
28
votes
3answers
2k views

Equine musicians?

What is interesting about the following sentence? "Furiously, in back of shut portals, one in four silvery equids is only hiding many extra tidings of meadows, somewhat more craftily than normal," ...
10
votes
3answers
2k views

Eight words: which one is different?

These eight words all have something in common, but one is slightly different. Which one? broad corn gain jar like mount range side To clarify, seven of these words have a specific property in ...
4
votes
2answers
201 views

Find the synonymous opposites!

Find a pair of English words each of which can be a noun, verb, adjective, or adverb such that: as nouns, adjectives, and adverbs, they're opposite in meaning as verbs, they have the same meaning (I'...
22
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 ...
6
votes
1answer
491 views

difficile est saturam non legere

Well, my last question wasn't received that well, nevertheless I will make a better one, besides you will need all the answers you can get. vcejssnr Now I can't leave you with a stupid cryptogram ...
17
votes
1answer
1k views

Strange Short Stories

What’s special about each of these sentences? It's different for each sentence. Easy: A bad chef, mad like a jackal, made a damaged, half-baked milk cake a mile high. Tomorrow we’ll see pretty ...
6
votes
3answers
404 views

Beneath the Waves

What is unique/unusual about the following strange couplet? a serene summer moon waxes over a wave-worn azure sea. an orca moans an arcane verse as mermen caress a venomous sea anemone.
31
votes
1answer
5k 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"...
4
votes
1answer
373 views

答えはまた二桁の数字、その3 (The answer is another two-digit number, #3)

A colleague at work gives you a slip of paper at work one day, with symbols written on it: ・のいろ・はおに・・ みほくへ・やしと・ち ・ま・り・・・・・ぬ ・るゑ・ひ・・を・け もわ・かせふ・よ・・ ・・こた・え・・・れ ・そ・・・・・つて・ あね・な・・・・さら ・・・...
2
votes
1answer
302 views

Memory Enhancement Through Numeric Imagery - What is the longest or best coherent sentence/paragraph/story you can make?

The guy who recited 20k numbers of pi by memory alone used a system where he converted numbers into consonants and then grouped words or sentences together to remember a huge amount of numbers. Here'...
-6
votes
3answers
389 views

Shortest sentence with 2 sets of synonyms?

Current Best: 13 characters This time I'm asking you guys to determine the shortest possible grammatically correct english sentence that includes 2 pairs of synonyms (different words that mean the ...