This paper describes a method for definition question answering based on the use of surface text patterns. The method is specially suited to answer questions about person’s positions and acronym’s descriptions. It considers two main steps. First, it applies a sequence-mining algorithm to discover a set of definition-related text patterns from the Web. Then, using these patterns, it extracts a collection of concept-description pairs from a target document database, and applies the sequence-mining algorithm to determine the most adequate answer to a given question. Experimental results on the Spanish CLEF 2005 data set indicate that this method can be a practical solution for answering this kind of definition questions, reaching a precision as high as 84%.