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A direct count (Posted on 2016-05-19) Difficulty: 3 of 5
From Don Lemon, Everybody’s Illustrated Book of Puzzles, 1890:

Twice six are eight of us,
Six are but three of us,
Nine are but four of us,
What can we possibly be?

Would you know more of us?
I’ll tell you more of us.
Twelve are but six of us,
Five are but four of us, now do you see?

No Solution Yet Submitted by Ady TZIDON    
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How it's done (spoiler) Comment 4 of 4 |
OK, OK, after all the titillating hints, now I do see: "we" are letters of the alphabet.
  Posted by JayDeeKay on 2016-05-19 22:47:59
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