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  #1  
Old 02 May 2007, 04:50 AM
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snopes snopes is offline
 
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Posts: 109,644
Ponder Riddle (supposedly from Francis Scott Key)

I made myself, and though no form have I,
Am fairer than the fairest you can spy;
The sun I outshine in his mid-day light;
And yet am darker than the darkest night;
Hotter I am than fire, than ice more cold,
Richer than purest gems of finest gold,
Yet I am never either bought or sold;
The man that wants me, never yet was seen;
The poor alone possess me; yet the mean
And grudging rich oft give me to the poor,
Who yet are not made richer than before;
The blindest see me, and the deafest hear;
Cowards defy me, and the bravest fear;
If you're a fool, you know me; if you grow
In knowledge, me you will soon cease to know.
Get me -- and low and poor thy state will be;
Forget me -- and no equal shalt thou see.
Now catch me if you can -- I'm sometimes caught,
Though never thought worth catching, never sought.
Am I still hid? then let whoever tries
To see me, give it up, and shut his eyes.
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  #2  
Old 02 May 2007, 04:57 AM
Sunny Lea
 
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Nothing?


extra characters for limit
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  #3  
Old 02 May 2007, 04:57 AM
Aimee Evilpixie's Avatar
Aimee Evilpixie Aimee Evilpixie is offline
 
Join Date: 20 January 2002
Location: Seattle, WA
Posts: 12,810
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Answer is (invisotext) nothing. I hadn't heard this particular one before, but I had heard similar ones.

ETA: Spanked! That's what I get to trying not to spoil it.

Last edited by Aimee Evilpixie; 02 May 2007 at 04:58 AM. Reason: Spankings all around.
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  #4  
Old 02 May 2007, 09:17 AM
lazerus the duck
 
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Quote:
Richer than purest gems of finest gold,
Gold gems?
Actually it doesn't make a lot of sense really, even the poor have their own body so they have something and the futures market specialises in buying and selling nothing.
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  #5  
Old 02 May 2007, 05:33 PM
matches
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snopes View Post
I made myself, and though no form have I,
Am fairer than the fairest you can spy;
The sun I outshine in his mid-day light;
And yet am darker than the darkest night;
Hotter I am than fire, than ice more cold,
Richer than purest gems of finest gold,
Yet I am never either bought or sold;
The man that wants me, never yet was seen;
The poor alone possess me; yet the mean
And grudging rich oft give me to the poor,
Who yet are not made richer than before;
The blindest see me, and the deafest hear;
Cowards defy me, and the bravest fear;
If you're a fool, you know me; if you grow
In knowledge, me you will soon cease to know.
Get me -- and low and poor thy state will be;
Forget me -- and no equal shalt thou see.
Now catch me if you can -- I'm sometimes caught,
Though never thought worth catching, never sought.
Am I still hid? then let whoever tries
To see me, give it up, and shut his eyes.
Having not read anyone elses answers, I am going to guess the answer is Hunger.

I base my guess primarily on this line:

"The poor alone possess me; yet the mean
And grudging rich oft give me to the poor,
Who yet are not made richer than before;"

Which suggests that the thing is a negative and a result of greed and opression. Since things like loneliness and sorrow are not the sole prospect of the poor, I lean towards Hunger, primarily since if the answer is poverty, saying the poor alone posess it seems a little to on the nose.
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  #6  
Old 02 May 2007, 05:35 PM
Dr. Dave Dr. Dave is offline
 
Join Date: 28 June 2005
Location: Montgomery County, MD
Posts: 5,279
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lazerus the duck View Post
Gold gems?
Actually it doesn't make a lot of sense really, even the poor have their own body so they have something and the futures market specialises in buying and selling nothing.
Not to mention that most of the other stuff is wrong: Many things are brighter than the sun as seen on earth; the darkest night is brighter than many places, even on earth (e.g. an unlit mineshaft); many things are hotter than fire (say, molten metals), colder than ice (e.g. dry ice, liquid nitrogen), and even the bravest person fears something.

Even if you discount "modern science (say the dry ice and liquid nitrogen), there are others that are universal.
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  #7  
Old 02 May 2007, 05:36 PM
matches
 
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Oh I get it...after reading the other answers...

I am nothing...

because nothign out shines the sun at mid-day light, and nothing is darker than the darkest night.

Cowards defy nothing, the brave fear nothing...

Very cleaver...
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  #8  
Old 03 May 2007, 04:50 PM
Robigus
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lazerus the duck View Post
Gold gems?
Actually it doesn't make a lot of sense really, even the poor have their own body so they have something and the futures market specialises in buying and selling nothing.
I think that was just a typo, supposed to read "Richer than purest gems OR finest gold"
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  #9  
Old 03 May 2007, 07:04 PM
Sunny Lea
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aimee Evilpixie View Post
Answer is (invisotext) nothing. I hadn't heard this particular one before, but I had heard similar ones.

ETA: Spanked! That's what I get to trying not to spoil it.
You know, I suck so monstrously at riddles, and was just so dang excited that I might actually know an answer for once that, in my giddy glee, I didn't even think of that.

That, and I'm not quite sure how to do said "invisotext" thing. I'm guessing it's in the rich text options that I never bother with. Aha, I think I may have it.
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  #10  
Old 03 May 2007, 07:55 PM
Deepfrydegg
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by matches View Post
I base my guess primarily on this line:

"The poor alone possess me; yet the mean
And grudging rich oft give me to the poor,
Who yet are not made richer than before;"

Which suggests that the thing is a negative and a result of greed and opression. Since things like loneliness and sorrow are not the sole prospect of the poor, I lean towards Hunger, primarily since if the answer is poverty, saying the poor alone posess it seems a little to on the nose.
I was thinking that line represented Compassion. The answer seems to fit better, but Compassion isn't too bad.
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