The trick is to create a "square" of words where the same words read
vertically and horizontally. Heck, it's probably easier to just show
you. Read on.
I looked for 8-letter word squares; there were too many
7-letter squares to make the hunt very exciting. The going was very
slow. Sometimes I could harness two machines here at the school, one
of which plodded along starting from the "M"s, and the other of which
started at the "A"s (at the beginning). The solutions below reflect
findings of various kinds; both 8-square and perhaps others.
I've started looking for "niners" on a 350Mhz linux machine at
I've also been working backwards from the highest-count word
groupings, eliminating these "demon" word ranges in which we will
almost certainly find no squares. If you look at the at the word counts for my word list, you can
see where I got the word lengths I submitted to this program:
So far, I've gotten down to 12; haven't found anything yet.
I've written another, more general-purpose algorithm that hunts down
squares where the horizontal words don't have to match the vertical
ones. I'll be running that on the machine at home and post results
here when they turn up.
You can click on a word to find its definition. Note the occasional
word of dubious provenance...:
- Of or belonging to Aaron, Levitical. (OED)
- A salt of aceric acid. (OED)
- A name given by Owen to lizards whose teeth are firmly soldered to the ridge of the jaw-bones. (OED)
- The annual report for 1892 issued by Merck, of Darmstadt, contains a description of a crystalline pentahydric alcohol obtained from Adonis vernalis, and named adonitol. (OED)
- One who abjures or forsakes his religious faith, or abandons his moral allegiance; a pervert. (OED)
- Perfect peace of mind, or calmness. (Dictionary.com)
- Present Participle of "to attire".
- One who banters (makes light conversation).
- A strait or narrow sea between two seas, or a lake and a seas; as, the Bosporus (formerly the Thracian Bosporus) or Strait of Constantinople, between the Black Sea and Sea of Marmora; the Cimmerian Bosporus, between the Black Sea and Sea of Azof. (Dictionary.com)
- Plural, name of a light bright clear red, resembling that of some cherries (from the French for "cherry") (OED)
- A kind of crimson cloth.
- A minor tranquillizer of the benzodiazepine group with sedative, anticonvulsant, and amnesic properties, given orally and by injection to treat anxiety, muscle spasm, status epilepticus, etc., and sometimes giving rise to withdrawal symptoms when it is discontinued. (OED)
- The training of a horse in obedience and deportment; the execution by a horse of precise movements in response to its rider. (OED)
- The elastic layer in the wall of an artery (The On-line Medical Dictionary [http://cancerweb.ncl.ac.uk/omd/])
- To give energy to; typically where the receiver stores this energy.
- To fortify, to establish in place, make snug, conceal.
- Past Participle of erotize; To transform (an emotion, etc.) into sexual feeling. (OED)
- French for "snail"; specifically; snails prepared for eating.
- An enzyme which brings about the hydrolysis of an ester into the corresponding acid and alcohol. (OED)
- Alternate (chiefly British) spelling of "eternize." (Ultralingua.net). Eternize: To make eternal, prolong indefinitely, make lasting, perpetuate (OED)
- One who exports (arranges for the shipping abroad of local goods).
- A secured site from which field artillery can lay down interdicting fire (Merriam-Webster).
- Plural of igniter; something which ignites (establishes self-sustained rapid oxidation (fire)).
- Plural of inciter; one who incites.
- Plural of inviter; one who invites.
- 3rd person, singular, simple present of "isolate"; to set apart.
- To specify, characterize, in a list.
- plural of macrame; objets d'art from woven cord.
- 3rd person, singular, simple present of "moisten"; to make moist (wet).
- Not found. However, did find "Novalis", pseudonym of Friederich von Hardenberg, 1772-1801, German poet. (Encyclopiedia.com)
- 1656 BLOUNT Glossogr., Nereides are also taken for Nymphs, or Fairies of the Water. (OED)
- Japanese art of sculpting with folding paper.
- Plural, a gardener. Obs. rare. A small bird, a species of bunting (Emberiza hortulana), found in most European countries, as well as in northern Africa and western Asia, and highly esteemed for its delicate flavour; the garden-bunting. Also called ortolan bunting. (OED)
- To move (v.i; oneself, v.t.; something) to another locale.
- Remodel and thus renew a living space.
- To modulate a vibrating system so as to establish a sympathetic, typically sonorous, standing wave in another physical system. Also used to characterize philosophical or affective agreement or sympathy.
- Present Participle of "retune"; To tune (a musical instrument) again, to rephrase or remelodize the words of a song. (OED)
- One who revives, a stimulating drink, a preparation for restoring a faded color, etc. (OED)
- Off-spelled name of a language, of Latin origin, spoken in the Grisons or eastern district of Switzerland.
- Related to a certain European speculative sensibility; related to loving feelings.
- The plank to cover up the port-hole. Obs. With prepositions a, at, on, to seaboard, on or to the seaward side (of a ship, etc.). Obs. (OED)
- Plural of seedsman; a sower of or dealer in seed. (OED)
- The 17th century; specifically : the 17th century period in Italian literature and art. (Merriam-Webster)
- Not Found in online OED, or via onelook.com, alltheweb.com, altavista.com, or yahoo.com.
- A tea-tray, esp. a wooden one. (OED)
Click HERE to see the tcl program.
The output is pretty boring, so I'm not going to show you here. You
just run the thing and see what you get....