In a rebuss, the player answers a series of questions. Each answer is a word or a part of a word. When the player has all of the individual answers, the initial letter of each word spells the answer to the final question.
Many rebusses would be too difficult for us today, being closely tied to 19thC culture, but some--like the ones I've chosen--aren't impossible.
Here's an example of a typical rebuss, taken from a 19thC book of puzzles:
A creature that's known of amphibious nature;
A beast that's remarkably bulky in stature;
A bird that's rapacious and others does scare;
A beast for its strength used often in war;
A bird that for singing excels in the night;
A beast that returns from its prey ere 'tis light;
A bird that the prophet Elijah did feed;
A tree used by archers in history we read:
By their letters initial there plainly is shown
The name of a city in England well known.
But if you need something a little less ... robust ... here are some simple rebusses on the names of birds. Here you often need to find only single words or in some cases, combine parts of several words (#4, 7, and 10).
1. A child's plaything
2. What we all do at every meal.
3. A disorder common to people and horses
4. An animal which a Jew must not eat, a vowel, and a preposition
5. To cut off, and a vowel
6. A distant country
7. Three-eights of a monthly periodical and a baked dish
8. A lever
9. An instrument for raising weights
Share your answers at my Goodreads blog!