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Tricky Matariki

For Matariki I wondered what 5 letter words could be made out of:


Have a go and see what you can come up with.

Some people ignore a quiz style format and scroll to the answers.

But I am hoping you will have a go because it is only looking for 5 letter words.

Imagine you didn't notice the extra letter and it is your first turn.

When you get near the end you will see there is something I didn't notice

There are no legal 7 or 8 letter words possible.

As it happens there is one 6 letter word and it is interesting.

MARARI - The Maori name for the butterfish.

Worth remembering. It would be easy to miss the bingo from:


Anyway, how did you go with 5 letter words? There were 12 of them.

ARIKI - The firstborn child of a notable Maori family.

IMARI - Type of Japanese porcelain decorated in red, green and blue

KARRI - A type of Australian gum tree.

KIRRI - An African club.

MARIA - An alternative name for a female horse. Interesting. I had thought it came from the fact that Black Maria is a slang name for a police van used for transporting prisoners.

MARRA - A slang word in Northern England for your mate.

MARRI - An Australian eucalyptus with coloured flowers.

MIKRA - Plural of Greek unit of length MIKRON (also MICRON).

RAKIA - Balkan fruit brandy. Nice alternative spelling - RAKIJA.

None of the above words are anagrams of each other but there is one combination of letters that made 3 different words:

KARMA - I don't have to include the meaning because you know what this is. But did you know that it came from Sanskrit? It has certainly been adopted into everyday English now, but once upon a time it must have been one of those weird foreign words that only a scrabble player would know!

MAKAR - A Scottish word meaning maker or poet.

MARKA - The unit of currency in Bosnia-Herzegovina.

At this point you might be confused. And it is all Patrick's fault

Please read on and try not to laugh too much

About an hour after posting this I suddenly thought that there were not two R's in MATARIKI but several of the words had two of that letter. After checking I realised I must have accidentally anagrammed MARARIKI I will leave everything above as a monument to my stupidity, but please ignore the words with two R's for the purpose of the quiz.

Now to complete this list there are another 13 words of 5 letters which include that previously missing T. First of all I will mention the four words of 6 letters that are now possible.

AMRITA - Indian beverage that bestows immortality. This has two alternate spellings of AMRIT and AMREETA

KARAIT - Venomous Indian snake - also KRAIT

TAMARI - Concentrated sauce of soya beans and salt

AMTRAK - Military vehicle that is used for moving on both land and water. Can also be spelled as AMTRAC

And then here are all of the extra 5 letter words

AKITA - Large Japanese dog

KIAAT - Tropical African tree

MATAI - Coniferous evergreen NZ tree

AARTI - Indian ceremony lighting candles to various gods - also ARTI

ATRIA - Plural of ATRIUM, a square hall lighted from above

RAITA - Indian dish of chopped vegetables in yoghurt

RIATA - A Spanish word for a lariat - also REATA

TAIRA - Large South American weasel

TIARA - A crown with three tiers

KARAT - Unit of quality for gold - also CARAT and CARRAT

KRAIT - Venomous Indian snake. See KARAIT above

TRAIK - To make one's way in a weary manner

AMRIT - Indian beverage - See AMRITA above

Happy Scrabbling


(it was a very tricky Matariki for some people)


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