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Wordsworth competition winners: New collective noun examples

We received a blizzard of entries for this week’s challenge, which sought examples of collective nouns.

Auckland’s Richard Wolfe suggests an embarrassment of Richards.

Maureen Skinner of Mangawhai foresees a fizzle of election promises.

Auckland’s Barry Preddle writes: If a collection of owls is a parliament, a group of parliamentarians must be a howl.

Levin’s Bronwen Gunn: a naiveté of lottery ticket buyers.

Bay of Plenty’s David Wort: a pharlap of Kiwi icons stolen by rival nations.

Ellie Henderson of Motueka ponders a rictus of real housewives, a cringe of Kardashians and a mishmash of MasterChefs.

From Ros Martin: a spectacle of optometrists, an assortment of confectioners, and an intrigue of crime novelists.

Dunedin’s Warren Jowett proposes a lack of principals and a quiff of crested grebes.

Auckland’s Rex McGregor reflects on a perpetuity of renters and a poorcity of transport solutions.

Waitakere’s M More is perturbed by a gridlock of Auckland mayoral candidates.

Poppy Sinclair of Karori: an obfuscation of spin doctors.

From Palmerston North’s Paul Kelly: a jeremiah of doomsayers.

Philip Lynch of Upper Hutt: a travesty of justices.

Wellington’s Sybil Gregson submits a wobble of weight watchers.

Barry Swindles of Pauanui: a compost of politicians.

Katherine Uren of Meadowbank: a flicker of fantails.

Wellington’s Allan Laidler: an armada of armadillos.

But Motueka’s medically inclined Brian Weatherhead wins with a pile of proctologists, a colony of microbiologists and a flutter of cardiologists.

With Halloween looming, the next contest is to compose a frightening haiku in 5-7-5 syllable format. Entries, for the prize below, close at noon on Thursday, October 20.

Submissions: wordsworth@listener.co.nz or send your entry to Wordsworth, NZ Listener, Private Bag 92512, Wellesley St, Auckland 1141. Please include your address.

KeepingRoomDVD-FWin this


In this ruthless tale of survival, directed by Daniel Barber, three women left without men during the Civil War defend their home from rogue soldiers.

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