Browse the Flat Type Pages

Webmaster's note: In order to make better use of the hyperlinking ability of the Internet, the flat types are laid out a little bit differently than they are in the hard-copy version of the Guide.

The acrostical, diastichal and telestichal enigmas, for example, are all very similar in structure, and quite dissimilar from the other flats. To compare them directly, though, you'd have to flip back and forth through the Guide.

This experimental rearrangement of the Guide is an attempt to allow any kind of look-up. You can use the list of alphabetized flat types and flat type modifiers in the navigation bar to the left to find any description by name. Once you click on a link, you'll be taken to that description on the relevant page, and the page will contain a number of flat types that are similar to it. It might be worth comparing to the other types on the page to help you remember the difference between, say, a linkade and a padlock.

For all-encompassing browsing, however, it's a little clumsy.

The links below will allow you to look over all the flat types without bouncing around from page to page.

Arrange letters in a new order to get another word or phrase:
Transposal, metathesis, anagram, antigram, ambigram, mutation.

Change letters in an entry to get another word or phrase:
Letter change, repeated-letter change, sound change, word substitution.

Combine shorter words to make single longer words:
Charade, transade, linkade, padlock, alternade, interlock.

The enigma and the riddle get a page of their own.

Some flat types don't change the words and phrases much at all:
Heteronym, homonym, reversal, mynoreteh, palindrome.

Move letters in an entry to get another word or phrase:
Letter shift, head-to-tail shift, phrase shift, changeover, transpogram.

Couplet-based enigmas are some of the most different flat types we have:
Acrostical enigma, telestichal enigma, diastichal enigma.

The rebus and its cousin, the rebade, are among the most popular types of flat we have.

Remove letters from a longer entry to get another word or phrase:
Deletion, beheadment, curtailment, terminal deletion, word deletion, transdeletion.

Some puzzles don't work with words that share a relationship, but instead with words that sound as though they do:
Homoantonym, homoconcominym, homosynonym.

Splice pieces of two entries together to produce two more words or phrases:
Double-cross, trans-cross, change of heart, heart transplant, dropout.

Certain flat types don't fall into any of these descriptions, but are still quite common:
Consonantcy, false derivative, letter bank, spoonergram.

There are also some flat types that don't fit these categories, and that are more rare:
Backswitch and switchback, literatim, order takeout and redro takeout, and group flats.

Finally, there are some modifiers that change the way the words in a puzzle's solution relate to each other:
Apt, bigram and trigram, overloaded, phonetic, picture, reversed, welded, and flats we never finished reading.

This page was last updated on Thursday, June 18, 2015. /webmaster