Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Anagram Techniques

When Fio first got interested in the newspaper's daily anagram, she would write the letters down, cut them out, and test various random arrangements.  Stupid Fiorella--the first thing she looks for now are morphemes like er/re, ing, s and ed/de.  She also checks out  possible consonant combinations like sh, ch, th, sch, and ght.  She's also learned a few tricks along the way, like that doubled letters side by side in an anagram are usually separate when the word is decoded, and vice-versa. 

Take DONUH, for instance.  Fio knows English words rarely end in h unless it's in combination with c, s, or t.  She also knows ou frequently occur together  (as do ea, ai, and oi).  The answer is HOUND.

RREROT is fairly easy because Fio's also picked up the trick of  checking an anagram out by scanning it backwards.  TORERR alerts her brain to the obvious--TERROR.

STURHH.  Hmmm.  Just one vowel, which means just one syllable, and s is joined with t in the initial offering, which mean it should really be attached to one of the hs, which leaves the other h for the s.  Dawns the light: THRUSH,

And if all else fails, Fiorella writes the letters down, cuts them out and arranges them randomly.

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