Thursday, 7 April 2011

Word riddles and puzzles

My son Joe and I have been exchanging riddles about words and language, so I thought readers of my blog might like to take part. Here are twenty tricky ones for you to puzzle over. If you need to check the answers click the Show button at the end of the list. Got some of your own? Use the comments box to add your contribution, or to let me know how well you did.

Riddle 1:
Sentence is not, but word is.
Adjective is not, but noun is.
TLC is not, but TLA is.
Can you explain?

Riddle 2:
Can you write a five letter word in capitals that reads the same upside down (ie rotated)?

Riddle 3:
I can take a beating without a bruise, and when I stop you lose. What am I?

Riddle 4:
I am used to bat with, but I never get a hit. I am always near a ball that is never thrown. What am I?

Riddle 5:
What seven letter word becomes longer when the third letter is removed?

Riddle 6:
I can be long, I can be short;
I can be grown, I can be bought;
I can be painted or left bare;
You can make me round, or make me square.
What am I?

Riddle 7:
What common English word of nine letters remains a common English word each time you remove a letter, even when only one letter remains?

Riddle 8:
Which seven-letter English word contains nine other English words without rearranging any letters?

Riddle 9:
What word can you write, six letters it contains,
If you take away one, twelve is what remains?

Riddle 10:
Take away my first letter, take away my second letter, take away all my letters and I remain the same. What am I?

Riddle 11:
Complete the sentence: I had to walk because I ran...

Riddle 12:
Apart from being methods of transport, what links race car, kayak and smart trams?

Riddle 13:
It’s a common question asked in a public place, even though the answer is perfectly obvious. What is the question?

Riddle 14:
You’d be over a hundred before you used this for the first time. What have you been doing, and what have you used for the first time in doing it?

Riddle 15:
Sounds like one letter and written with three,
Two letters the same, and two used you see,
It’s single, they’re double, brown, blue, green and grey,
Read from both ends it’s the same either way.

Riddle 16:
It touches only one person, but binds two. What is it?

Riddle 17:
What insect has an insect inside it?

Riddle 18:
If you don’t keep it after you have given it you will break it. What is it?

Riddle 19:
What goes up at the same time as it come down, and is both present and past?

Riddle 20:
Think of words ending in -GRY. Two of them are ANGRY and HUNGRY. There are only three words in the English language. What is the third word? The answer is plain to see.


  1. Followed you here from the forum - I love riddles like these!

  2. Glad to have your company, Deniz. Thanks for your kind comment.