Culture

25 Riddles Miss Lou Would Love That Will Stump Your Friends

Miss Lou Louise Bennett CoverleyJamaican Cultural Icon

Louise Bennett-Coverley, better known as Miss Lou, has been a standing force in Jamaican culture for years. Ms. Lou was an educator, folklorist, writer and poet, popularizing Jamaican Patois internationally and paving the way for other entertainers to use Patois in their art. Miss Lou had a very vibrant spirit and a captivating laughter. Her legacy is always celebrated and lives particularly through all the poems and books that she published over the years.

Miss Lou has received quite a number of honorary awards both locally and internationally for her contribution to the Arts, including being appointed Cultural Ambassador at Large for Jamaica and an Order of Merit. There is also a school named after her – Louise Bennett Coverley All Age School – in her hometown community of Gordon Town, St. Andrew on the island.

In the 1960s Miss Lou hosted a TV show called “Ring Ding” at the JBC studio. Jamaicans would come alive when they hear her cheery voice saying “Riggle mi dis, riggle mi dat, guess mi dis riggle an paraps not.” – followed by a pause with a smirk on the face! Miss Lou comes alive when she is in her elements. She would dance, sing and engage her usually young audience with ring games, folk songs and stories and riddles.

According to the Oxford dictionary, a riddle is a question that is difficult to understand, and that has a surprising answer, that you ask somebody as a game.

Here are some popular riddles, often shared in the Jamaican community. Let us know in the comments how many of them you know, or if we have missed any popular ones!

  1. Riggle mi dis, riggle mi dat: Mi guh inna de wata black and come outta de wata red. What am I?
    Answer: Lobster
  2. Riggle mi dis, riggle mi dat:I can travel from there to here by disappearing and here to there by reappearing. What is it?
    Answer: T
  3. Riggle mi dis, riggle mi dat: Dirt drop inna well, well full up…
    Answer: Yuh eye
  4. Riggle mi dis, riggle mi dat: What happens 1 time in a minute, 2 time in a week and 1 time in a year.
    Answer: The letter ‘e’
  5. Riggle mi dis, riggle mi dat: Four foot sidung undah four foot a wait pon four foot…(This is a very easy one)
    Answer: Puss sitting under table a wait for rat
  6. Riggle mi dis, riggle mi dat: Prime Minister, Doctor, Governor General… which one wear di biggest hat?
    Answer: Di one with di biggest head
  7. Riggle mi dis, riggle mi dat: What deh front a woman and backa cow?
    Answer: The letter ‘W’
  8. Riggle mi dis, riggle mi dat: Four foot siddung under four foot a wait fi four foot.
    Answer: Puss sitting under table a wait for rat
  9. Riggle mi dis, riggle mi dat: A cow and a donkey are coming round the corner.They crash. Which one is wrong?
    Answer: The cow, because he should have blown his horn
  10. Riggle mi dis, riggle mi dat: Di longer it tan (stay) di shorter it get.
    Answer: Candle
  11. Riggle mi dis, riggle mi dat: If tree seven is twenty one, how much is seven trees?
    Answer: A small woodland
  12. Riggle mi dis, riggle mi dat: Why is every river rich?
    Answer: Because every river has two banks
  13. Riggle mi dis, riggle mi dat: Sweet water stand up.
    Answer: Sugar cane
  14. Riggle mi dis, riggle mi dat: One slice a yam serve di whole world.
    Answer: The moon
  15. Riggle mi dis, riggle mi dat: Missis Queen dress tear, but no needle kyaan sew it.
    Answer: Banana or plantain leaf
  16. Riggle mi dis, riggle mi dat: Mi father have a bull cow and him milk him anytime. When him don’t milk him?
    Answer: Yuh kyaan milk a bull
  17. Riggle mi dis, riggle mi dat: Green as grass, but nuff macka. what am I
    Answer: Soursop (macca is the Jamaican equivalent to prickle/thorn)
  18. Riggle mi dis, riggle mi dat: Yuh ever see cow head wid two yie (eyes)?
    Answer: Yes, wid mi own two eyes
  19. Riggle mi dis, riggle mi dat: How much different corner from Morant Point to Negril Point?
    Answer: Two : left corner and right corner
  20. Riggle mi dis, riggle mi datt: Whoofa (whose) bed always wet?
    Answer: River
  21. Riggle mi dis, riggle mi dat: Walking down di road mi see one green house, inside it was one white house and inside that one red house with plenty lickle brown window. What is that?
    Answer: Watermelon
  22. Riggle mi dis, riggle mi dat: Gravel a top, gravel a bottom, tell di devil say mi a come.
    Answer: River
  23. Riggle mi dis, riggle mi dat: Why dawg kyaan stay eena one yard?
    Answer: Because three feet make one yard and a dawg has four feet
  24. Riggle mi dis, riggle mi dat: Why trains an clothes related?
    Answer: They both spend a lot of time on lines
  25. Riggle mi dis, riggle mi dat: Four brothers went on a trip, two before and two behind. Try as them might, the two behind could never catch up the two in front.
    Answer: The wheels on the car

25 Riddles Miss Lou Would Love That Will Stump Your Friends - PIN

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Annieca Edwards