On Friday I posted this puzzle….

How are all these letters related?


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

It’s very simple.  All of the letters appear in the phrase ‘How are all these letters related’!

Did you solve it?  Any other answers?

I have produced an ebook containing 101 of the previous Friday Puzzles! It is called PUZZLED and is available for the Kindle (UK here and USA here) and on the iBookstore (UK here in the USA here). You can try 101 of the puzzles for free here.


    1. Don’t forget that none of them are digraphs! And they all commonly appear in the English language! And all sorts of other things!

      I am not a fan of this kind of “puzzle.”

  1. Oh. I didn’t get it. I’m not sure if I’m feeling deflated or “wow!”; I thought it would be more convoluted than that.

    1. It’s not you. The “puzzle” was not really a puzzle and it was pretty stupid. One can find 100+ relations like that.

      Please, post no more Friday puzzles like that. If there is a Friday will no good puzzles, then it would be better to post none 🙂

  2. I decided not to play.

    The literalism sure is more appealing in Pulp Fiction.

    “Say something!”

  3. The given solution RATED HOWLS from the audience but I suppose it HOLDS WATER, even though it made me feel like A DOLT SHREW. Face it, WE LOST HARD.

    (yes, there is an anagram server on the internet 🙂

    1. I prefer doing anagrams manually if I can. Sometimes I can, sometimes not.

      My technique is to first divide the letters into vowels, ‘soft’ consonants, and ‘hard’ consonants, and order each group alphabetically. This just makes it easier to see what sort of letters need using up. So in this case ADEHLORSTW becomes:


      Then I choose a word that I can make from the letters and move it to a group of its own. I separate words from unused letters with a + sign. For example, if I choose SLOWER we get:

      SLOWER + A H DT

      Which is a dead end, as there’s no word THAD or DATH that I know of. But what if we backtrack and just use SLOW?

      SLOW + AE HR DT

      It is then a short step to:


      (Note: I always copy and paste each step to a new line before changing it so that it’s easy to backtrack if I hit a dead end.)

    2. Could you please explain why you would want to seperate “hard” and “soft” consonants? Is the rational that you rarely have two hard consonants next to each other?

    3. If I’m asked to solve an anagram, I will also try to do it manually, but this time I just needed something quick to make a semi-facetious point about other ways the letters could belong together

      I’ve never actually had a method for solving anagrams, unless you accept “poke the letters around until they make sense” as a method, so thanks for that.

    4. @Anonymous It’s more something that just seems to help rather than something I have a logical justification for. I think partly it makes it easier to spot ways of using up several consonants in a row by using some from one box and some from the other. It might also be an optimisation thing, where arranging letters into too few groups or two many makes them hard to scan but three groups is just right. But these are hypotheses: basically, it seems to work so I stick with it. 🙂

  4. I really enjoy the Friday puzzles but this one wasn’t great. Maybe it’s just that I couldn’t get the answer, but I’m quite sure even if that solution had occurred to me, I’dve dismissed it as no better than any of the other reasonably arbitrary connections I’d come up with.

  5. I got the answer. I almost stopped at “they are all on the top two rows of the keyboard.” But decided it wouldn’t be that. Once I got the proper answer, I knew it would be right.

  6. I wouldn’t call that very simple. I’d say it’s actually kind of tough considering how uninspired the answer actually is.

  7. This was not among my favorites. There were too many answers which could have fit: they’re all letters of the alphabet, they’re all found in the dictionary, they’re in alphabetical order, they’re all found the phrase, “All day, every hour, loiterers on railways see the west” – and on and on.

    1. Well, perhaps, but don’t you think that ‘They’re all found in “How are all these letters related?”‘ is rather more clever, and, once discovered, quite obviously the right answer?

  8. My answer was that if you take any one of the letters out of the set, the remaining 9 letters can be used to form at least one set of two words, one with four letters and one with five, without reusing any letter. Like, for A, one set has the words HOLD and STREW.

  9. This is not a good puzzle for the visitors to this site who’s native language is not english. For those puzzled visitors those letters would not make up the same words in their Languages.

  10. Wow. Quit whinging just because you didn’t get it guys!

    Anyone who argues that other answers (like “they’re all letters of the alphabet”) are equally valid, is just being pedantic. Yes there are other correct answers! Logic puzzles often have multiple correct answers. In that case it is not your job to pedantically point out all of them, but rather to find the answer that the questioner most likely intended. And you usually do that by looking for the most elegant, clever and lateral answer.

    Granted, this wasn’t the most elegant, clever or lateral puzzle. But Richard’s answer was still better than the other “technically correct” answers being proposed by pedants.

    1. “but rather to find the answer that the questioner most likely intended.”

      By telepathy, you mean?

      “And you usually do that by looking for the most elegant, clever and lateral answer.”

      I’ve seen at least two (so far) more elegant answers offered by commenters. How are any of THOSE answers not the one I was meant to pick over the “official” one?

    2. “By telepathy, you mean?”
      – No. Lateral thinking. I solved it, as did others.

      “I’ve seen at least two (so far) more elegant answers offered by commenters.”
      – Lisa Anne Kelly’s answer was great! What’s the other one?

      If this was an exam, I’d give Lisa Anne Kelly full marks, because it’s a great answer (even though it isn’t really a “relationship” as the question asks for, but a pattern). But it’s not an exam. It’s a puzzle. Meant to stimulate your brain. Not your rage. Lighten up. 🙂

    3. I agree with pablo oldaq. I thought it was an excellent puzzle. I got it quite quickly, and knew for certain that my answer was the one that was required. I don’t see any more elegant answers.

      Lisa Anne Kelly’s answer, although technically correct, is not as elegant, for the simple reason that it could easily apply to any number of combinations of letters.

      Seems to me it’s a case of ‘I didn’t solve it = I don’t like it’

      Some of you should take a step back and appreciate the cleverness of the answer rather than jeer because you couldn’t solve it.

      (The comment about the puzzle not working in a different language mystifies me, by the way. Perhaps someone could explain that one.)

      Also, part of the appeal of the Friday puzzles to me is that they vary in style from week to week.

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