Rebus is not the name of a prominent country singer's spouse. It is the use of a pictogram to represent a syllabic sound. This adapts "pictograms" into "phonograms." The writing of correspondence in rebus form became popular in the 18th century and continued into the 19th century. Lewis Carroll wrote children picture-puzzle rebus letters, nonsense letters, and looking-glass letters, which had to be held in front of a mirror to be read. Rebus letters served either as a sort of code or simply as a pastime. They persisted in cheap magazines in dentist offices for a while, but the practice seems to have disappeared along with my deciduous teeth and I find the process just as tedious as a trip there today. Don't waste your time. Shown here?
The Cannibal's Puzzle
Handsome Harry's Problem
I See You Are Easy
Summer is Here (excerpt)
Group of REBUS images, Collection Jim Linderman