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Puzzles - Riddles

Generally, a riddle is a sort of puzzle in which one is asked a question and makes attempts to come to an answer. A riddle can be a puzzling question, a hypothetical problem to be solved, or what is often also referred to as a thought experiment. Often, posing riddles can be used for other purposes than puzzlement, like the famous hangman's riddles, as well as for argumentative or political ends, where the answer is not so much a mystery but is presented as though it were. There are many types of riddles depending on their structure, their format, and what methods of thinking they require to solve. Many riddles are tricky, in that they manipulate language or common thought processes to make the answer seem less clear, like garden path riddles. The largest category of riddles are identity riddles, in which a common object or other phenomenon is described, and the solution is to correctly identify what that common object is by naming it. This is often used in educational settings as well as children's learning rhymes.
Below is a collection of identity riddles. Warning: Don't click on the solutions until you have an answer or are sure you cannot come up with the answer on your own; riddles are meant to stretch your brain a little.

Riddle 1[edit]

{{Riddle What year did the swan sing?

Riddle 2[edit]

Little Trotty hetty coat in a long petticoat and a red nose the longer she stands the shorter she grows. What is it?

Answer: A candle.

Riddle 3[edit]

It is in the rock, but not in the stone; It is in the marrow, but not in the bone;

It is in the bolster, but not in the bed; It is not in the living, nor yet in the dead.

What is it?

Answer: The Letter R

Riddle 4[edit]

George walked for thirty minutes in the pouring rain without getting a single hair on his head wet. He didn't have a hat or an umbrella and his coat had no hood.

How did he do that?

Answer: He is bald.

Riddle 5[edit]

At night they come without being fetched,
And by day they are lost without being stolen.

What is it?

Answer: stars or dreams

Riddle 6[edit]

I never was, am always to be,
No one ever saw me, nor ever will
And yet I am the confidence of all
To live and breathe on this terrestrial ball.

What is it?

(Hint: It never comes)

Answer: Tomorrow (future).

Riddle 7[edit]

Runs over fields and woods all day
Under the bed at night sits not alone,
With long tongue hanging out,
A-waiting for a bone."

What am I?

Hint: It's something very close to you.

Answer: A shoe

Riddle 8[edit]

The beginning of eternity
The end of time and space
The beginning of every end,
And surround every place.

What am I?

Answer: The Letter E

Riddle 9[edit]

There was a greenhouse.
Inside the greenhouse there was a white house
Inside the white house there was a red house.
Inside the red house there were lots of babies.

What am I?

Answer: A watermelon

Riddle 10[edit]

My tines are long.
My tines are short.
My tines end ere
My first report.

What am I?

Answer: Lightning

Riddle 11[edit]

Fill my bucket, spill my bucket,
over a plane of snow.
Black the track as I look back,
my footsteps talk but make no sound.

What am I?

A pen

Riddle 12[edit]

A Halloween riddle
My first letter is in the spell, but not the book
My second letter is in the fright and also the shook
My third letter is in the cauldron, but never in pot
My fourth letter is in the net and also in the knot
My fifth letter is in the bat, but never in the vampire
My sixth letter is in the coal, but not found in fire
My seventh letter is in moon, but not in night

Who am I?

Answer: The Phantom

Riddle 13[edit]

A seven letter word
whereby the word 123 is an animal,
456 is a utensil,
2345 is a type of food,
and 567 is something that remains the same every year.

What am I?

Answer: See discussion page about this answer... sorry not to give it to you now

Riddle 14[edit]

Dies, half its life,
Lives the rest.
Dances without music;
Breathes without breath. What is it?

Answer: fire, an octopus, or the wind (take your pick on the answer)

Riddle 15[edit]

What is the one thing that all wise men, regardless
of their religion or politics, agree is between
heaven and earth?
What is it?

Answer: death, air, purgatory, or "and" (take your pick on the answer)

Riddle 16[edit]

There is an ancient invention still used in some parts
of the world today that allows people to see through

What is it?

Answer: A window

Riddle 17[edit]

Guides travelers, never move,
Always turning, never looks,
Always shining, never burns,
Looks on blue fields with each of its turns.

What is it?

Answer: A lighthouse, compass, or a buoy

Riddle 18[edit]

Dead on the field lie ten soldiers in white,
Felled by three eyes, black as night.

What happened?

Answer: A bowling ball knocked down ten pins.

Riddle 19[edit]

I saw an unusual book:
The foreword comes after the epilogue;
The end is in the first half of the book;
The index comes before the introduction.

Name the book.

Answer: A dictionary

Riddle 20[edit]

I am the part of the bird that is not in the sky,
who can drown in the ocean and yet remain dry.

A last vestige of man that refuses to die.
In mourning I am tossed at your feet to lie;
I begin my job early, devouring your ankles and thighs.
I work my way up, eating your legs to your waist.
And though around midday away I am chased,
I return quickly to savor the arm of my taste.
As evening falls I enter your lungs,
spiraling down past your mouth and your tongue.
I feast on your body, your soul, and your mind,
but as darkness falls you shall find
that way I will go, a relief for some;
At least until tomorrow morning comes.

What am I?

Answer: A shadow

Riddle 21[edit]

Pearl white chest
without key or lid.
Inside of which
golden treasure is hid.

What am I?

Answer: An egg

Riddle 22[edit]

I wake you up in the morning.
You touch me all day, but I never complain.
IYou hate it when you can't find me. Whenever you have to talk to your friends, you hold me tight.

I am your....?

Answer: Phone

Riddle 23[edit]

I am, in truth, a yellow fork
From tables in the sky
By inadvertent fingers dropped
The awful cutlery cry.
Of mansions never quite disclosed
And never quite concealed
The apparatus of the dark
To ignorance revealed.

What am I?

Answer: Lightning

Riddle 24[edit]

I will be nice if you see pics thrice.
I bear fruit of trees, sometimes in 3's.
I am but an arm's length in front of you.

What am I?

Answer: A slot machine

Riddle 25[edit]

I am the outstretched fingers

that seize and hold the wind.
Wisdom flows from me in other hands.
Upon me are sweet dreams dreamt.
My the merest touch brings laughter.

What am I?

Answer: A feather

Riddle 26[edit]

I love to move around,
But usually not on the ground.
I'm quite strung out when way up high.
I like to sail, but I need to stay dry.
I need air, but not to breathe.
A a helpful hand is all I need.

What am I?

Answer: A kite

Riddle 27[edit]

Curtail me thrice, I am a youth;
Behead me once, a snake;
Complete, I'm often used, in truth,
When certain steps you'd take.

What am I?

Answer: A ladder

Riddle 28[edit]

I am black of eye and bright of hair
And my feet are firmly on the ground.
I love the sun upon my face
And I follow it around.
When I am dead and gone this said,
That I will droop real low,
That I will keep the birds well fed,
Standing stiffly there in my row.

What am I?

Answer: A sunflower

Riddle 29[edit]

My 1st is a wish or a dream
My 2nd is a trust or belief
My 3rd is a good feeling of the heart
My 4th means the fates be with ya.

What am I?

Answer: The various meanings of hope

Riddle 30[edit]

My first is an ocean but not in sea
My second in milk but not in me
My third in three but not in throw
My fourth in vow but not in crow
My fifth in eight but not in night
My last in wrong and also right
My whole is praise for thoughts or men
Or women, too, or tongue or pen.

What am I?

Answer: Clever (the word)

Riddle 31[edit]

I have three feet, but I can't stand without leaning.
To make matters worse I have no arms to lean with.
Please be good so that I'm not called into use.

What am I?

Answer: A Yardstick (or meter ruler, whichever system you're using)

Riddle 32[edit]

What is inanimate, yet can stand up,
Can start out copper and end up as steel,
So fragile, a child could break one,
But many have the strength to lift a man?

What is it?

Answer: A human hair.

Riddle 33[edit]

They have not flesh nor feathers,
nor scales nor bone;
but they do have fingers and
thumbs of their own.

What are they??

Answer: Gloves

Riddle 34[edit]

When young, I am sweet in the sun.
When middle-aged, I can help to make you healthy.
When old, I am valued more than ever

What am I?

Answer: Grapes, Raisins, and Wine

Riddle 35[edit]

I dig out tiny caves,
and store gold and silver in them.
I build bridges out of silver,
Make crowns out of gold,
But everyone is afraid of me
Even the young and old.

Who am I?

Answer: The dentist

Riddle 36[edit]

We are such little tiny creatures;
all of us have different features.
One of us in the glass is set;
One of us you'll find in jet.
Another you may see in tin,
and the fourth is boxed within.
If the fifth you should pursue,
it can never fly from you.

What are we?

Answer: The vowels (a, e, i, o, u)

Riddle 37[edit]

I was trapped in a jail cell.
All I had was a mirror and a wooden table.

How did I escape? (Hint: The answer only makes sense if you say it aloud.)

Answer: I looked in the mirror and saw what I saw. I took the saw and cut the table in half. Two halves make a whole. I escaped through the hole.

Riddle 38[edit]

30 men and ladies 2,
gathered for a festive do;
dressed quite formal, black and white:
soon movement turned to nasty fight.

What's the event?

Answer: It's a #### of international chess.

Riddle 39[edit]

What do men love more than life,
Fear more than Death or mortal strife;
What poor men have, and rich require,
And what contented men desire.
What the miser spends, yet the spendthrift saves;
And all men carry to their graves?

What am I?

Answer: nothing

Riddle 40[edit]

A dog I am not,
A cat I am neither,
I wear my 'face' backward,
And I'm not much of a breather

Who am I?

Answer: Elton John