The Long and Short of Cryptic Abbreviations

by Denise Sutherland One of the keys to cracking the cryptic code is learning about abbreviations. We setters use abbreviations in our clues all the time. They are used to ‘clue’ letters individually, or sometimes in pairs or triplets. Here’s an example. Say I am writing a clue for the word CICADA. One of the […]

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The Mysteries of the English Language

by Annie Carlin A great benefit of solving word puzzle games is that you improve your vocabulary.  You often come across words you have never heard or seen before Isn’t it great to learn what they mean and be able to use them correctly in a sentence? The enigma of the English language Here are […]

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The Dementia Driving Dilemma

by Annie Carlin & Catherine Eagleson It’s an issue which will confront us all at some stage.  When should we (or our parents) stop driving because we have become unsafe? The Alzheimer’s Australia Dementia and Driving Guide for Families and Carers profiles a sad but interesting story about Geoff and his gradual decline as a […]

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Anagram Clues

by Denise Sutherland One of the most common types of cryptic crossword clue you’ll come across is anagram clues. In these sorts of clues there is — as is usual with most cryptic clues – a definition, and some wordplay. The definition is a regular definition for the answer word. So, for example, say if […]

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Boost Your IQ Solving Puzzles

Have you ever aspired to be a member of the organisation Mensa? It is the largest, oldest and best known high-IQ society in the world. Mensa is a non-profit organisation open to people who score at the 98th percentile or higher on a standardized, supervised intelligence test.  Mensa is formally composed of national groups and […]

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Stay In Touch By Solving Crossword Puzzles

by Asuquo Udofia One of the most fun and mentally stimulating activities people can do while self-isolating is to stay in touch by solving crossword puzzles. Cosimo Bizzarri, who lives in Italy, one of the country’s worst affected by the coronavirus, testifies of the benefit of having crosswords handy in isolation. Writing in The New […]

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Solving crosswords at a social distance

By Asuquo Udofia Two is company, three is a crowd – and literally so these days in cities across the world because of COVID-19.  Social distancing… self-isolation… lockdown.   These terms have been added to vocabularies with the spread of the coronavirus. In many parts of the world, social distancing has meant a lockdown of […]

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Cryptic Clue Anatomy

by Denise Sutherland So, what makes a cryptic clue? There are some general principles that apply to most types of cryptic clues. We’re all used to regular crossword clues, which are basically definitions for, or possibly examples of, the answer. So you might have: Feline (7) = LEOPARD In a cryptic clue, however, there are […]

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Puzzles The Way To A Healthy Brain

A healthy lifestyle is the key to a healthy brain.  We know that what we eat and drink has a direct impact on the cells of our brain and body.  But it’s also how we spend our days that has a big effect on our health in later life.  As the Brain Foundation points out, […]

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Types of Word Puzzle Games

by Annie Carlin There are a number of different types of word puzzle games that you can solve to keep your brain fit and healthy.  Whatever your favourite, you can solve them leisurely on your own, or with a group of friends.  A morning/afternoon coffee break is ideal. Crosswords Did you know that there are […]

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