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Some superior ten-squares.

The following squares are, in my view, the approximate equal, or superior of, the square published as My First Ten-Square (Word Ways August 2002). I invite readers to form their own views as to the relative merits of the three squares below and the August one. I give my own views inverted at the end of the article.

Notice that, for the first time, we have non-tautonymic ten-squares with no phrases, and one with all words solid. They are a mere whisker or two from the perfect ten-square, which I know I cannot find without using proper nouns, given a mere two million dictionary words of all lengths. These squares need a much larger vocabulary, perforce incorporating proper nouns.
E C H E N E I D A E Echeneidae, Webster 2 (genus)
S H O R T C O A T S shortcoats, see OED short-coat, 1649 quote
C E R B E R U L U S ITIS animal: Camponotus cerberulus venturensis
E N T E R O M E R E enteromere, see Webster2entero-,
N E C R O L A T E R necrolater, Chambers, see necro-
D I O U M A B A N A Dioumabana, Guinea, 11[degrees] 116' N, 9
 [degrees] 08' W, NIMA
A D A L E T A B A T Adaletabat, Turkey, 38[degrees] 58 N, 42[degrees]
 42' W, NIMA
N A T U R E N A M E nature-name, see OED nature V.15.
T E S S E R A T E D tesserated, see OED tesserate

D E S S E M B L E D see below
E L T A M A R A N I Wadi el-Tamarani, Egypt, 29[degrees] 52' N, 34
 [degrees] 32' E, NIMA
S T I T C H I N G S stitching, OED verbal noun, or plural in 3 quotes
S A T I R E T T E S satirette, OED, plural in quote
E M C R I S T E N E OED wosith, first quote (and 6 others elsewhere)
M A H E S W A R D I Nagar Maheswardi, Bangladesh, 24[degrees] 04' N,
 90[degrees] 42' E, NIMA
B R I T T A I N E S Britains or British, see OED symbolize, 1590
 quote etc.
L A N T E R N A R O Lanternaro, OED lantern 8, 1598 quote
E N G E N D E R E R engenderer, OED
D I S S E I S O R S disseisor, OED, plural in various quotes

The English word DISSEMBLE and its derivatives come from the Old French verb DESSEMBLER. There is one instance where the original spelling occurs in English, that of DESSEMBLINGE, in a 1621 quote under both crocodile and viperous in the OED. The implied English verb is DESSEMBLE and its past participle DISSEMBLED.

An alternative square uses emcrystene (OED unkind, 1250 quote).
D I S S A V A G E D dissavage, verb, OED
I K H A T A R E N E Ikhatarene, Morocco, 33[degrees] 17' N,
 4[degrees] 44' W, NIMA
S H O R T L I N G S shortlings, OED morling, 1833 quote
S A R A R E S T I I Sararestii, Romania, 44[degrees] 56' N,
 24[degrees] 52' E, NIMA
A T T R I S T I N G attristing, OED attrist, verb
V A L E S T O L E N Valestolen, Norway, 60[degrees] 49' N,
 5[degrees] 32' E, NIMA
A R I S T O T I L L aristotill, OED advertise, 1477 quote
G E N T I L I T E E OED gentility, 1546 quote
E N G I N E L E S S engineless, Webster2
D E S I G N L E S S designless, OED

Only one location or source is given for a name. NIMA = National Imagery and Mapping Agency's database ITIS = Integrated Taxonomic Information System, US Department of Agriculture

The squares were found on various machines of mine with either my program or one helpfully given by Chris Long.

The deficiencies of the squares are as follow:

ABAPTISTUM: 5 placenames (including one of two words), and a Latin word from which a familiar English word is obviously derived.

DESCENDANT: 2 placenames, and a hyphenated word.

DESSEMBLED: 2 placenames, 2 proper nouns, 2 words from citations (not headwords), and dessembled, which is inferred.

DISSAVAGED: 3 placenames, and 3 words appearing only in citations.

I pay little attention to hyphens, as dictionaries often differ, and I feel their existence is rather quixotic. Likewise, I am happy with the Latin word so closely related to a common English word. I deduct marks for the other inadequacies mentioned, so my order of preference is: DESCENDANT clearly first, followed by ABAPTISTUM and DISSAVAGED together, followed by DESSEMBLED. I am aware that hyphenophobes will downgrade DESCENDANT, but to choose DISSAVAGED means ignoring a number of other faults.
Letchworth, Herts, England
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Title Annotation:word games
Author:Gooch, Rex
Publication:Word Ways
Date:Nov 1, 2002
Previous Article:New record pangrammatic windows.
Next Article:The Tebahpla.

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