Puzzles, posts, news and general word-chat.

Diabolically Arcane

Bingo. You’ve reached David Astle dot com, a carnival of words, puzzles and more words. Welcome aboard, and have fun.

Loading tweet...

Oooh, We're Looking For Clues

18 October, 2012

The things you find in the Library of Congress. As you know, I’ve been neck-deep in research these last few months, assembling a new book about crosswords through the century. A long slog, but then you find a morsel like Frank Crumit’s novelty tune of 1925, Cross-word mamma, you puzzle me (but papa’s gonna figure you out).

Note the hyphen too. Back in the 1920s, crosswords were cross-words, having changed already from a word-cross (in 1913). But visit the library’s vault and savour a grab of chequered history.

And last, to keep In The Mood, let’s see if we can compile a Top Ten of crossword songs, offering or modifying existing hits (or bands) to suit the cruciverbal art. Some suggestions:

Bittersweet Homophony
Unfinished Symphony
Seven-Lettered Army
Where Is My Mind?
Checks on Speed
Moody Clues
Oobla-Dee-Oobla-DA

Together, let’s make some beautiful B&W music…

Welcome to the new forum. Looks scary? It’s not. Feels iffy? It ain’t. The DisQus platform is here to block spam and lend us more chat options. That’s all. Please note, you don’t have to create a DisQus account to make a comment. If you do, however, it will speed your future visits. Be assured no details are abused, misused or reused. Let’s fight spam as one, and get back to the grand conversation. Thanks, DA

comments powered by Disqus

Wordburger Awaits!

Welcome all puzzle-lovers, including any chompers of the Wordburger book or app. (Check them out if you enjoy words & trickery.) And if you still crave more alphabet mischief, click on the burger icon above for a fresh serve.

Medal

Wordburger

Packed with games, pickles, codes and cheesy puns, Wordburger is your chance to be a champion puzzler in 20 quick bites. Ideal for wordy kids keen to open a new language door, or grown-ups who want to cut their cryptic teeth. Click here. 

read more +

Riddledom

Riddles in song, in code, in pictures. From Ireland & Wonderland, Einstein & Pompeii. Riddledom reveals 101 wry questions from 50+ languages & shares their secrets. A book to unlock culture via conundrum. Order here.

read more +

Cluetopia

Cluetopia roams the planet – and century – to find fresh crossword stories in 30+ languages. From shipwrecks to hoaxes, Cluetopia is a holiday for the head. Buy here.

read more +

Recent Comments

Riddledom Rave

If you missed my riddle chat with Richard Fidler, then feel free to slurp the podcast at http://ab.co/1I9t1x5

Text-speak is creeping into Scrabble. Where do you sit?
OBVS I'm fine with it
Entrenched stuff - like LOL and OMG - but no more.
Words With Friends, maybe. Scrabble, no
Let the 'real' dictionaries decide first
Just the handy stuff, like FAQ and EUW
I mean, WTF?! No way
See Results