Sacred Manuscripts Boast Secret Ciphers
Thorpe, Susan, Word Ways
In Orthograffiti (WW78217), Richard Lederer showed that a single sound can be demonstrated by many different letters. The sounds which concern us here are the long vowels, specifically the sounds of the 5 major vowels, A,E,I,O and U as they are pronounced in the reading of the alphabet. The sound symbols are those of the Phonetics List of the Oxford English Dictionary, Second Edition. However, I include a further parameter. The long vowel sound must either be preceded, or succeeded, by the short 's' sound. The latter was chosen because it comes in a range of letter combinations. It was not chosen so that plurals could be used. In fact, most s-ending plurals end with the short 'z' sound!
Many of the variant forms in the OED may also qualify as examples of the genres below but have not been included because they are not phoneticized individually. Letters which immediately follow the required sound, and which are obviously silent letters, are not included as part of that sound. Thus the -igh of 'sigh' is deemed not to be a variation of the long I sound.
long 'A' sound followed by short 's' sound.... (phonetic eIs) AC ace, awl, face, glacier AIS waist, dais AS asyllabic, basic, casein, waste AYC Jaycee (US coll.--a member of the junior chamber EC precis\of commerce) EIS obeisance, braaivleis (a barbecue), millreis (coin) EYS greystone, geyser UES roquesite (a sulphide of copper and indium CuIn[S.sub.2]) AIC plaice AISS caisson, bouillabaisse, traiss (trace) ASS bass AYS playsome, Malaysian EES keeshond (a variety of the spitz dog) ES mesa, Keres (a Pueblo Indian people) EYSS Seyssel (the name of 2 villages on the upper Rhone) short 's' sound followed by long 'A' sound.... (seI) CE acequia (a canal for irrigation), fiance SA sacred, dispensation SAI saint, sailor SE Seder (Passover service), Luiseno (a Shoshone Indian people) shimose (a high explosive), seance SI sind (to rinse), Sinaic SSAY essay(ette) SSEH medresseh (a Muslim college) SZAI szaibelyite (a hydrous borate of magnesium) CEE fiancee SAE saeter (a meadow associated with a dwelling) SAY saying, calisaya (a valuable Peruvian bark), soothsay SEI seigniorial, seine (a fishing net), abseil, nisei \sayyid SEY Seychelles, causey (a dam) SSA decussate, glissade, cessation SSE masse (a billiards term), chausse (shod) SSEI nissei (an American born of Japanese parents) ZE piazze (var. 'piazza', an Italian public square) long 'E' sound followed by short 's' sound.... (i:s) AEC aecidial, faeces EAC peace EC ecize (re. plants--to colonize), perithecium, EES eesome (attractive to the eye), teesoo (Dhak flowers) ES Esau, thesis, obese IC ici, police IES gieseckite (variety pinite), Schoenflies (mathematician) IS isblink, artiste, piste, ambergris, kris ISS pelisse (a fur garment), camiss (a Muslim shirt) OES oestrin AES aestivation, quaestor EAS Easter, yeast, grease, increase EEC fleece, Greece EIS eis-blink, leister (a fishing spear) EYS keystone IEC piece IIS iisblink (a luminous appearance on the horizon) caused by the reflection of light from ice) OEC oecist (the founder of an ancient Greek colony), dioecy IX Dix (the lowest trump in Bezique and other card games) short 's' sound followed by long 'E' sound.... (si:) C C--the letter C CE cedar, ceanothus, ibices, panacea, circe CEE ceefax, dicees, proceed, seducee CEY ceylonite (a ferruginous variety of spinel from Ceylon) CIE cieling, abcie CY cypres (in Law, means 'as near as practicable') SAO Saorstat eirann (Irish Free State) SEA season, heartsease, Chelsea SEI seiff (old type of eye-wash), casein, disseisee SI sikh, arsine, Farsi SSAE thalassemia, vibrissae SSEE lesseeship, assessee SSI assize (parallel beds of rock agreeing in their organic remains) SY Sylow (P. …