Answer to the Friday Puzzle….


At 10am today the tickets for the next Edinburgh Secret Society event (“The Lafayette Seance”) will go on sale here.

On Friday I posted this puzzle….

Can you cross out the unnecessary letters to leave a common phrase?




If you have not tried to solve it, have a go now.  For everyone else, the answer is after the break.




Did you solve it?  Any other solutions?

If you enjoy the Friday Puzzle, remember that I have produced a kindle ebook containing 101 of the previous Friday Puzzles! It is called PUZZLED and is available in the UK here and USA here.

UPDATE: When I originally posted this I left a second R and PHRASE – this has now been corrected.


35 comments on “Answer to the Friday Puzzle….

  1. Roz says:

    Sneaky! Nice one 🙂

  2. Morgan says:

    Richard, you haven’t crossed out the ‘R’ between the ‘P’ & ‘H’. Close…

    • Gordon says:

      Yes. And last time I checked it was spelled P-H-R-A-S-E not P-R-H-A-S-E.
      That said, I thought the same thing for a brief second. Must be something to do with the P, R, H being close together at the end of the line.

    • Gordon says:

      Damn, I cannot read this morning. Totally missed the word “haven’t”. Doh! Never mind. Obviously, Richard has corrected it already.

  3. The other Matt says:

    I didnt solve it… Just saw the “the” in the first line and a “yes” in the third line.

  4. Anonymous says:

    that’s because there’s an r in phrase…

  5. JayCee says:

    as a non english speaker, i am still puzzeled by the solution.
    What does it mean?

    I thought the last word could be “year” or “years” but…

    can someone upgrade my english idiom… thanks

    • tort says:

      The letters that are crossed out are the letters that make up “the unnecessary letters” in order you remove the T then the H then the E etc. once those letters have been removed the remaining letters are “ACOMMONPHRASE” or “a common phrase”.

    • M says:




      Got it now?

    • DeepField says:

      I had solved it, but I had not realized the crossed-out letters had a meaning too.

  6. significance says:

    JayCee, the letters crossed out are “THEUNNECESSARYLETTERS” (the unnecessary letters”), leaving “ACOMMONPHRASE” (a common phrase).

  7. Anonymous says:

    Jay – the answer is literal, the letters crossed out spell ‘the unnecessary letters’, leaving ‘a common phrase’. An r has been missed though so it currently spells a common prhrase.

  8. deepak says:

    i got only after reading significance answer.

  9. Lazy T says:

    I read the question as an instruction and it was easy.
    My second answer was to cross out every thing but ….ME…..ME…..
    another very common phrase.

  10. Bletherskite says:

    I got the answer but hadn’t realised the letters left spelt out “the unecessary letters” – nice :-D.

  11. Joao Pedro Afonso says:

    Delicious and sneaky. Didn’t solve it. I thought it was to cross across lines and leave some common saying, and didn’t trusted my English to do that (crossing across lines is difficult because if we choose 2 letters to cross, that implies in some cases crossing a third letter… unless the crossing is too much slanted).

  12. leshelou says:

    Got it, but only after staring at it for ages xD

  13. mittfh says:

    I started crossing off likely letters, then while I was doing that looked at the comments and saw someone mention it was very ‘punny’. I then had a hunch, and checked my suspicions by doing the puzzle in reverse: deliberately crossing out ACOMMONPHRASE, which left me with THEUNNECESSARYLETTERS.

  14. Julia says:

    i spotted ‘a common phrase’ but not ‘the unnecessary letters’. thought that was it – didn’t think to check what letters I’d crossed out.

  15. Jarl says:

    I got “the unnecessary letters” first. I was very close to stopping right there, but fortunatelly I thought about it a bit more and got the real answer.

  16. Juan AR says:

    Ouch! 🙂

  17. Magic Nuts says:

    Nice puzzle. I like it.

    • Martha says:

      ‘The results come in the wake of World Homeopathy Awareness Week (10th – 17th April) which aims to increase knowledge and understanding of homeopathic remedies around the globe’ XD

  18. Cosmin Romania says:

    Noooo :(( I actually remained with the unnecesary letters :))

  19. JayCee says:

    Must have been blind – got it now,
    thanks all!

  20. Marion says:

    I got this one- the word ‘letters’ seemed really easy to see on the last line and from there the answer came to me straight away!

  21. joshthelegend says:

    wow! never realised the crossed out letters were significant until flicking through the comments…

  22. I just wanted to say I really like your writing style.

  23. Avram says:

    Nice puzzle but i don’t know how to make it . I like it.


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