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AERST transposals.

My article "Transposing Rates" in the November 1987 Word Ways has examples for 63 of the 120 possible transposals of the letters AERST. Further research has expanded the collection to 85, with many of the original entries being improved as well. Abbreviations like ESRTA (Empire State Restaurant & Tavern Association) are excluded; however, a couple of derivatives (RTase, TSAer) are listed. Names with initials, such as T.S. RAE, are omitted, as are contrived terms and purely foreign words. Due to the nature of the source (Net), some examples may be suspect.

AERST an early form of erst, first [OED]

AERTS a surname listed 163 times in US telephone directories [White Pages]. Egidus Aerts (1822-53) was a Belgian musician and composer [DUB]

AREST an obsolete form of arrest and erst [OED]

ARETS reckons, ascribes, imputes [Web 2]

ARSET backwards, a Scots term [SND]

ARSTE a surname listed 4 times in US telephone directories [White Pages], and 6 times in the 1978/79 Hamburg, West Germany telephone directory [TD]

ARTES plural of arte, a 14-17th century spelling of art [OED]

ARTSE an Ashkenazic male given name [DAGN]

ASERT brand name of the anti-depressant sertraline [Net]

ASRET a male given name [Kabalarians]

ASTER in sponges, a star-shaped spicule [Web 2]

ASTRE a hearth or home [OED]

ATERS plural of ater, an early form of atter, poison, gall [OED]

ATRES genitive singular form of ator, poison, venom [A Concise Anglo-Saxon Dictionary, J.R. Clark Hall, 1960]

ATSER son of Thured, a Somerset landowner in Anglo-Saxon times [Onomasticon Anglo-Saxonicum, W.G. Searle, 1897]

EARST an obsolete variant of erst [OED]

EARTS plural of eart, Shetland Islands form of earth [SND]

EASTR possibly an early variant of the surname Easter. Bridgett Eastr and Margaret Eastr of Atwick, Yorkshire were both married in 1663 [IGI, British Isles]

ERAST 15th century form of erst [OED]

ERATS persons with the surname Erat such as the 221 listed in US telephone directories [White Pages]

ERSAT a Turkish male given name, such as Ersat Hurmuzlu, author of Irak Turkleri, 1991 [Net]

ERSTA a populated place in Sweden [GeoNames]

ERTAS a surname listed 9 times in US telephone directories [White Pages]

ERTSA Finnish diminutive or nickname for the male given name Erik [yhdistykset.etela-karjala. fi], such as Erik "Ertsa" Mandelin and Erik "Ertsa" Tarnaala [Net]

ESART a surname recorded 6 times in the 1930 Federal US Census, including Vincent and Margaret Esart and their children Marguerita and Vincent Jr of Suffolk County, Massachusetts [Net]. Vincent and Arlene Esart are residents of Concord, Massachusetts []. There are 33 entries for Esart in Britain [IGI, British Isles]

ESRAT a Bangladeshi female given name (sometimes rendered Israt or Ishrat), such as lawmaker Esrat Sultana Elen Bhutto and junior tennis player Esrat-Zahan Eti [Net]

ESTAR a surname listed 8 times in US telephone directories [White Pages]

ESTRA variant of the female given name Esther [What to Name the Baby, Evelyn Wells (1946)]

ETARS plural of etar, a 15th century spelling of eater [OED]

ETRAS persons with the surname Etra such as the 79 listed in US telephone directories [White Pages]

E-TSAR someone appointed to lead a campaign to get more businesses and individuals on the Internet. "Will the minister say a little more about the e-envoy or e-tsar?" [The UK Parliament, House of Commons Hansard Debates for 29 Nov 1999 (Net)]. Dorcas Etsar of Surrey, England is recorded in the 1881 British Census, and Anne Etsar, daughter of John Etsar, was christened on 4 Mar 1719 in Leatherhead, Surrey, England [IGI, British Isles]

ETSRA a small town in northern Saudi Arabia [EB, 10th Edition, 1903]

RAEST an early form of the noun rest [OED]

RAETS surname of Willem Raets, a 16th century Flemish mathematician [DUB]

RASET variant of reset, an old Scots form of receipt [DOST, reset, 1556 quot]

RASTE a surname listed 5 times in US telephone directories [White Pages] and 4 times in the 1981 Oslo, Norway telephone directory [TD]

RATES the amount of assessment on property for local purposes [OED]

RATSE an Ashkenazic female given name [DAGN]

REAST variant of reest, to become rancid [OED]

REATS plural of reat, an offence, wrong-doing [DOST]

RESAT past tense of resit, to sit (an exam) again [OED]

RESTA a populated place in Sweden [GeoNames]

RETAS a surname listed 3 times in US telephone directories [White Pages]. People with the surname Reta such as the 219 listed in US telephone directories [white Pages]

RETSA Retsa Agency Inc and Retsa Business Services are based in Jackson Heights, New York [ (Net)]

RSETA surname of Milan Rseta, a resident of St. Petersburg Beach, Florida [White Pages]

RTASE short for reverse transcriptase, an enzyme that transcribes single-stranded RNA into double-stranded DNA [Net], compare RNase [OED]

SAERT a former subdivision of the province of Kurdistan in Turkey [EB, 9th Edition, 1876]

SAETR the name of a farm in Norway [NG, Vol 19]. Saetr is an old Norse word meaning mountain pasture (see etymology of saeter) [OED]

SARET a populated place in Afghanistan [GeoNames]

SARTE a populated place in Ethiopia [GeoNames]

SATER variant of saeter, a meadow associated with a dwelling in the Shetland Islands [OED]

SATRE a surname listed 210 times in US telephone directories [White Pages]

SEART surname of Conrad and Elisabeth Seart of Indiana, recorded in the 1880 US Census [ (Net)]. The surname Seart is listed 6 times in Britain [IGI, British Isles], and 5 times in Noah America [IGI, Noah America]

SERAT a region in Yemen [Times Index-Gazetteer, 1965]

SERTA the modern Syriac cursive script [Web 2]

SETAR variant of sitar, a guitar-like Indian musical instrument [OED]

SETRA a populated place in Indonesia [GeoNames]

SRATE surname of twins Caroline and Friedrich Srate, born 3 Oct 1868 in Ludenhausen, Germany; their father was Heinrich Srate [IGI, Germany]

SREAT surname of a Missouri family of 5 recorded in the 1880 US census [ (Net)]

SRETA a male given name [Kabalarians]

STAER old Scots variant of stair [DOST]

STARE a fixed gaze [OED]

STEAR one of the weasel tribe [EDD]

STERA a populated place in Yemen [GeoNames]

STRAE 16-19th century Scots form of straw [OED]

STREA 17-19th century dialectic form of straw [OED]

TAERS Shetland Islands and Cornish form of tears [EDD]

TARES the cultivated vetch, grown as fodder [OED]

TARSE the tarsus, first part of the foot [OED]

TASER a type of stun-gun [OED]

TASRE surname of Daniell Tasre, son of Potogono Taste, who was christened in London on 21 Sep 1613 [IGI, British Isles]

TEARS drops of any liquid [OED]

TERAS a monster [Web 2]

TERSA a populated place in Russia [GeoNames]

TESAR a surname listed over 300 times in US telephone directories [White Pages]

TESRA surname of Guerino Tesra, a resident of Akron, Ohio [White Pages]; also, a female given name [Kabalarians]

TRAES variant of thraes, suffers from a serious illness [SND]

TRASE an obsolete form of trace [OED]

TREAS a 16th century form of the noun trace [OED]

TRESA a stream in Norway [GeoNames]

TSRAE Tsrae Lee Agency, a company running Trsae Art 'n' Frames, based in Penang, Malaysia [Net]

TSAER an employee of the Transport Security Administration (TSA). "At least you have a fighting chance with the TSAer at first stage security" [ (Net)]. The surname Tsaer was recorded in the Russian village of Rosenheim in the Volga Census of 1798 [, American Historical Society of Germans from Russia, Volga Census Index (Net)]

TSARE given name of French Canadian man Tsare Genits (born 1817, Quebec), recorded in the 1881 Canadian Census [ (Net)]. Skazka o Tsare Saltane (The Tale of Tsar Saltan) is an opera by Russian composer Rimsky-Korsakov [Net]

TSEAR surname of S.Y. Tsear, listed in the 1983 and 1985 Toronto telephone directory [TD]

TSERA a populated place in Burma (now Myanmar) [GeoNames]


DAGN Dictionary of Ashkenazic Given Names, Alexander Beider, 2001

DOST Dictionary of the Older Scottish Tongue, 1937-2002

DUB Dictionary of Universal Biography, Albert Hyamson, 1951

EB Encyclopaedia Britannica

EDD English Dialect Dictionary, Joseph Wright, 1905

GeoNames National Imagery & Mapping Agency placename database []

IGI International Genealogical Index []

Kabalarians, an Internet database of given names

Net the Internet, using Google search program

NG Norske Gaardnavne (A Register of Norwegian Farm Names), Oluf Rygh, 1936

OED Oxford English Dictionary, 2nd Edition, 1989

SND Scottish National Dictionary, 1931-76

TD telephone directory

Web 2 Webster's New International Dictionary, 2nd Edition, 1934

White Pages, an Internet database of names listed in US telephone directories June 2006

A Topical Dictionary of Slang

Republican pizza = pizza with Green peppers, Onions and Pepperoni

BANANA = build Absolutely Nothing Anywhere Near Anything

Assmosis = kissing up to the boss instead of working hard

Wallet biopsy = finding out how much care a paying patient can afford

Red-headed Eskimo = legislation tailored to benefit a tiny minority

Slang (Walker & Company, 2006; $24.95 hardcover) is a new and completely updated version of Paul Dickson's Slang! (Pocket Books, 1990), reviewed in the Aug 1990 Word Ways. More than ten thousand slang words and phrases, twice the number in the earlier work, can be found here.

The unique feature of Dickson's book is its arrangement by categories, enabling the reader to browse among related items. Most of the categories in 2006 are repeats of the ones sixteen years earlier: advertising (renamed The Slang of Spin), Auctions, Automobiles, Aviation, Business, Computers, Crime, Drugs, Fantasy and Si-Fi, Medicine, Mental States, Nautical Affairs, Performing Arts, Politics (renamed Washington-Speak), Real Estate, Sex, Sports, War, and Yuppies. Food is still there, but with a spin-off titled Javaspeak (think Starbucks). Bureaucratese has spawned Cube-speak, and Teen Slang considers University Slang an additional category. Net-Speak, Games, and Hip-Hop are entirely new.

As Paul Dickson says in the introduction, "[Slang] is renegade language that thumbs its nose at the very people who study and write about it. Slang is unruly, irreverent, illogical, and it can be brutally frank and direct, or deceptively kind and euphemistic. Euphemism is the verbal trick that has been termed the deodorant of language, and slang has given us dozens of terms for drunkenness and insanity that are remarkably gentle."


Hastings, New Zealand
COPYRIGHT 2006 Jeremiah Farrell
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Author:Grant, Jeff
Publication:Word Ways
Date:Nov 1, 2006
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