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Shifty numbers.

While probing endless logologico-mathematical esoterica for an article on Extreme Number Names we explored shiftgrams of number names cardinal, ordinal and Roman on Dave's lettershift calculator (described in Alphabet Avenue, p.111). Shiftgrams move all the letters of a word the same number of spaces forward in the alphabet, wrapping as needed so that A = 1 and 27, etc. The best (known) example shifts 'cheer* seven letters forward to 'jolly'.

The best one we found was for THREE, which 4-shifts to XLVII, which Anil punctuated without rearrangement to either (X/L)(V)+I+I or X/(L/V)+I+I, both of which = III.

Here are some other self-referential results: (number of shifts in parentheses)

ONE (13) = bar & NONE (13) = a-bar, its infinitely perfect opposite, (one/none = [infinity])

NONE (10) = xyxo > X/Yx0 = 0 = none, (a common cheat calling 0 O, as in reciting phone nrs.)

TEN (10) = dox > "Do X."--a recipe for generating ten. (by a ten shift)

FIRST (9) = orabc > or ABC--first principles.

TENTH (10) = doxdr > "Do X, Dr."--a "professorial" extension of the ten ten-shift above.

NTH? (11) = Yes! (an inside joke for whoever knows what is nth)

No Arabic number word shifts to a five-letter Web3 word, and only two shift to four-letter words:

NONE (4) = divs (demons); NINE (13) = Avar (a people and language). As well,

FIVE (19) = y box (a Web3 electricity phrase) and SEVEN (10) = co-fox, a possible nonce word.

Far more Roman than Arabic numbers gave words, but only three yielded (forced) cognates:

XII (3) = all > a L=L--ie, all L's are the same and = 12 alphanumerically. (groan) Or all > al. L--an other way of saying XII. (Therefore 12 = 50?--a $38 mark-up!)

CI (21) = XD. Doubling it > (X)(D)(X/D) = C/I, a punc lib charade of CI. (10x500x1/50=100/1)

XXI (15) = MMX. Although 21 [not equal to] 2010, they have the same digit sum, 3. 2010 also resembles 21 and becomes 21 if the zeroes are removed, being mere nothings. Similarly, XXII = MMXX (22=2020) and XXIII = MMXXX (23=2030).

Of the many non-cognate words from Romans, these four-letter W3 words were found:

XLII (22) = Thee! (Thee art 42, the meaning of life, the universe & everything, because ...)

XVII (22) = Tree (the root of it all).

LXXI, CXXI, DXXI (7) = seep, jeep, keep.

MXXI + XX (7) = teepee, (a teepee-made-for-two Romans)

LMXXI (7) = steep--although 971 is more properly CMLXXI.

XCVI (22) = tyre. This is the only Roman example without double letters, four different letters, one for each corner of the vehicle.

CXII, DXII, MXII (3) = fall, gall, pall.

DCCX (1) = eddy.

MDCC (23)= jazz.

Again, no legitimate single number gave a five letter word or longer.

Allowing letter rearrangement after a shift gave some longer words, selfies and other fun results.

ZERO (9) = inax> a nix (a zero).

THREE (10) = drboo> Dr. Boo brood; (7) = aoyll> alloy; (22) = pdnaa> panda, (three fivers)

FOUR (12) = ragd> Drag darg, Gard grad.--four anagrams in a polyanagram sentence. (Gard is a place in France but not in Web3, where it wouldn't fit.)

FIVE (13) = svir> V. sir. (Five, Mister.)

EIGHT (22) = aecdp> caped paced. (Superman?)

EIGHT (7)-lpnoa> plano.

NINE (10) = xsxo > (X-X0)'s = nine's: (10-1)'s.

TWELVE (4) = xaipzi> XII--zap! (Twelve--take that!)

TWELVE (22) = psahra> A-sharp harpas (off-key molluscs).

FORTY (18) = xgjlq> XL gjq. (Forty gjq might be dangerous if only we knew what a gjq was!)

FIFTY-FIVE (9) = orochoren> re Orochon (a people, W3; or Orochi). Is one called an Orochoner? If so this is by far the largest single word shiftgram-anagram result found for any number word, possibly for any w'ord (?). And it's a 9-shift of a nine letter word.

HUNDRED (11) = sfyocpo> posy of C (a hundred flowers).

THREE THOUSAND lzjuu lzGMKsfy: while no anagram is possible this one is notable for having G. M and K together, the three different one letter equivalents of thousand: Grand ($), Roman M and Kilo-, totaling three thousand. (3000 metric Roman dollars?)

FIRST (21) = admno> monad (= one).

SECOND (16) = iusedt> Used, it. (second hand).

FOURTH (14) = tcifhv> cf. IVth (see fourth).

FIFTH (19) = ybyma> By May! (Pay by the fifth month or else!) (For a fifth of whiskey?)

SIXTH (11) = dties> Ed set diets, sited ID-set edit's tides, (six anagram sentence)

SEVENTH (19) = lxoxgma. Doubling > Go! Am LXX/X, log max. (LXX/X=seven.) Anil couldn't resist cheating here by zipping two numbers together in a polyanagram.

TENTH (11) = epyes> Spy E+E. (Letters five + five = ten. But no, that's upside down. It's two tenths make a fifth! Yet two fives make a ten. Isn't life strange.)

TENTH (4) = xirxl, a near miss: xirxl, by replacing r with m, rearranges to MLXXI, which 22-shifts to ihtte > tithe (a tenth). Tithe also trans-substitutes to tenth by replacing i with n.

MDCLXVI (18) = evudpna> unpaved dupe van. (Pun, Dave!)-- pun on 666, rough road/ride to hell.

For good measure, we throw in three apt non-number shiftgrams. The first two are direct hits, no rearrangements. The third use a half reversal for a > < implosion structure.

DOXY (3+23+6) = Grab a luv, Jude, (loose woman)

USA (12) = Gem. (Columbia, the Gem of the Ocean)

Eckler (16) = usabuh> USA hub! (logology hub)


Iowa City, IA


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Author:Morice, Dave; Anil
Publication:Word Ways
Article Type:List
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:May 1, 2014
Previous Article:Swinburne's "Nephelidia".
Next Article:Wordplay/slipperiness of language/N-tendres.

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