The toughest word game on the web.

In this etymology game you’ll be presented with 10 randomly selected etymology (word origin) or word definition puzzles to solve; in each case the word or phrase is highlighted in bold, and a number of possible answers will be presented. You need to choose the correct answer to score a point for that question. Beware! The false answers will often also seem quite plausible, and some of the true answers are hard to believe, but we have documentation!

(via Backwards City)


  1. 2/10, slightly worse than average, and one of them was a gift as it a definition rather than an etymology. I think they were being kind when they called my score ‘miserable’.

    I love etymology too, I can’t count the number of people I’ve beaten around the head with a stick for trying to tell me that posh “stands for Port Out Starboard Home”…

  2. I thought “mind your p’s and q’s” was an expression from printers of the olden days. When you do letterpress, all the letters are backwards so the letter p looks like a q and vice versa. I think the expression makes more sense in that context than in the “teach kids the letters of the alphabet” context.

  3. 9 out of 10, but that was mostly just dumb luck — I only felt completely confident in two or three answers… In fact, by the end, I started feeling paranoid and suspected that the damn quiz just tells you you’re right no matter what, just to try draw you in, hehehe.

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