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English Language and History .com is a collection of two-minute tales drawn from history, myth and fiction. Each tale is accompanied by word games testing grammar and expression, based on textbooks used in British schools from the 1920s to the 1960s.

The Suez Crisis
Music: John Field
An Egypt independent of British rule humiliated her old colonial mistress, but began to slide into despotism.

IN 1956, Britain and America withdrew an offer to fund the building of the Aswan Dam on the River Nile, as a warning to Egypt over the country’s drift towards communist Russia and China. Egypt’s President, Gamal Abdel Nasser, announced in response that he would nationalise the Suez Canal, hitherto an international partnership.

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AZ Index

See a complete A-Z List of all the stories on this website.

Featured Topic
Tagged ‘George Stephenson’ (10 posts)
page 1
1 A Monument to Liberty
By Samuel Smiles
Samuel Smiles explains why the London and Birmingham Railway was an achievement superior to the Great Pyramid of Giza.
2 The Rainhill Trials
To prove that steam power was the future of railways, George Stephenson held a truly historic competition.
3 The London and Birmingham Railway
The textile moguls of Manchester and Liverpool engaged the Stephensons to complete their link to the capital.
4 Burning Daylight
By Samuel Smiles
George Stephenson argued that his steam engines were solar-powered.
5 The Hetton Railway
The railway earned a special place in history as the first to be designed for steam locomotives only.
6 The Stockton and Darlington Railway
George Stephenson and his son Robert created the world’s first passenger railway.
page 2
7 The Gift of the Gab
There was one form of power that self-taught engineering genius George Stephenson never harnessed.
8 The Bully and the Brakesman
A young George Stephenson takes responsibility for the team spirit at Black Callerton mine.
9 The Geordie Lamp
Based on an account by Samuel Smiles
The engineer put his own life on the line for the safety of his fellow-workers in the coal industry.
10 The Character of George Stephenson
By Samuel Smiles
A self-made man who never forgot his humble beginnings.

Word Play: Verb or Noun?

Use each of the words below once as a noun and once as a verb:

Study. Craft. Mind.

New Stories
By John Stuart Mill
John Stuart Mill reminds us that governments and the courts must never be allowed to criminalise matters of belief or opinion.
By Charles Dickens
Charles Dickens sketches for us the shyly ingratiating youth who gets himself in a tangle in the presence of Beauty.
The only truly global conflict in history began when German troops crossed into Poland in September 1939.
By Richard Cobden
Richard Cobden questioned both the wisdom and the motives of politicians who intervene on foreign soil.
New Puzzles
Make as many words as you can from the letters of a nine-letter word.
Make as many words as you can from the letters of a nine-letter word.
Try writing complete sentences using these nouns as either the subject or the object of a verb.
Try writing complete sentences using these verbs in either the active or the passive voice.
Polyword ‘Sycamore’
Make as many words as you can with the letters below. All your words must be at least four letters long, and must also include the highlighted letter. What’s the nine-letter word?

SEE how many words you can make using the letters below. All your words must be at least 4 letters long, and must include the letter (change).

We found commonly used words, plus one 9-letter word. Can you do better?

Use each letter only once. But if there are e.g. two As, you can used them both.

Don’t count proper nouns such as April, Zeus, or Newcastle (pretty much anything that has to be spelled with a capital letter at the start), or acronyms like HMRC.

Don’t just add -S for plurals or third person singular verbs, e.g. CAT → CATS or SPEAK → SPEAKS.

Note: You can find more Polywords and other games on our Nine Lives puzzle page, and most of our stories are accompanied by games with words, grammar and numbers.

More Puzzles
Do you know ‘a brilliant solo passage in a concerto’ (7 letters), and ‘e.g. lion, tiger’ (3,3 letters)?
Do you know ‘pull along behind one’ (3 letters), and ‘self-evident or accepted proposition’ (5 letters)?
Do you know ‘stout’ (6 letters), and ‘gloat’ (4 letters)?
Changing one letter at a time, see if you can start with SWORD and finish with PEACE.
Do you know ‘cunning’ (3 letters), and ‘Phobos’s primary’ (4 letters)?
See if you can guess these words letter-by-letter.
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History (360)
Fiction (78)

letters game

Make words from two or more of the tiles below. What is the highest-scoring word you can make?

Press enter or type a space to see feedback on your word.

More like this: ‘Scrabble’ letters game Games with Words

numbers game

Make the total shown using two or more of the numbers underneath it. You can add, subtract, divide and multiply. Use any number once only.

More like this: Maths Gym Mental arithmetic