Nth Degree

Today, we'll deal with all of those juicy consonants. Actually, they're not so juicy when there's hardly any place to play them! You really need to know a handful of vowel-starved words to minimize the penalty points at the end of the game. That 30-point lead you enjoy will be wiped out if you have ten points worth of tiles when your opponent goes out … with an 11-point play!

Power Play

NTH is a useful play. It means being the last in a series of infinitely decreasing or increasing values, amounts, etc. We've all heard of "nth degree," which denotes the utmost in something. Points-wise, it's hardly the utmost of anything but, still.

Strumming Down in the Valley

CRWTH is an ancient, stringed musical instrument.

"Crwth-in-case" by Harry Campbell - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Crwth-in-case.jpg. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

CWM is a bowl-shaped, steep-walled mountain basin carved by glaciation, often containing a small, round lake.

Related words: CIRQUE and CORRIE

Rude Raspberries


Comic books really help us learn words. You've seen the big balloons dripping with saliva to simulate a tongue-rattling raspberry. Turns out, the writers were only exaggerating slightly (especially with the saliva!) You can play PHT or even PHPHT. If you're really into bilabial fricatives, you can also play BRR and BRRR. Apparently, BR isn't cold enough to qualify. It's all a matter of degree.

Keyboard Design

QWERTY rhymes with dirty – which is probably the look you'll get if you play this consonant-rich word. But it's in the Official Scrabble Player's Dictionary. So PHPHT!

ListsThat Make Us Go HMM…

Here are a few web pages that have more "consonant-heavy" words. As always, double-check the agreed upon dictionary with your opponents, unless you're playing online, where the software prevents unacceptable words.

Longest Words Quiz #1

These anagrams are all playable and have only one vowel. How many of them can you unscramble?

Longest words with one vowel