Chronological Order

By Lee Sallows: If the letters BJFGSDNRMLATPHOCIYVEU are assigned to the integers -10 to 10, then:

J+A+N+U+A+R+Y     = -9+0-4+10+0-3+7     =  1
F+E+B+R+U+A+R+Y   = -8+9-10-3+10+0-3+7  =  2
M+A+R+C+H         = -2+0-3+5+3          =  3
A+P+R+I+L         = 0+2-3+6-1           =  4
M+A+Y             = -2+0+7              =  5
J+U+N+E           = -9+10-4+9           =  6
J+U+L+Y           = -9+10-1+7           =  7
A+U+G+U+S+T       = 0+10-7+10-6+1       =  8
S+E+P+T+E+M+B+E+R = -6+9+2+1+9-2-10+9-3 =  9
O+C+T+O+B+ER      = 4+5+1+4-10+9-3      = 10
N+O+V+E+M+B+E+R   = -4+4+8+9-2-10+9-3   = 11
D+E+C+E+M+B+E+R   = -5+9+5+9-2-10+9-3   = 12

Similarly, if -7 to 7 are assigned SROEMUNFIDYHTAW, then SUNDAY to SATURDAY take on ordinal values. See Alignment.

(David Morice, “Kickshaws,” Word Ways 24:2 [May 1991], 105-116.)

A Self-Descriptive Crossword Puzzle

From Lee Sallows:

Can you complete the ‘self-descriptive crossword puzzle’ at left below? As in the solution to a similar puzzle seen at right, each of its 13 entries, 6 horizontal, 7 vertical, consists of an English number name folowed by a space followed by a distinct letter. The number preceding each letter describes the total number of occurrences of the letter in the completed puzzle. Hence, in the example, E occurs thirteen times, G only once, and so on, as readers can check. Note that the self-description is complete; every distinct letter is counted.

Though far from easy, the self-descriptive property of the crossword enables its solution to be inferred from its empty grid using reasoning based on orthography only.

sallows self-descriptive crossword

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