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...


9 September, 2011

Will Shortz, the New York Times crossword editor, and puzzle master heard on National Public Radio, threw out a cute challenge last week. The gimmick involved two members of the same category who shared two overlapping letters, such as TUBA and BASSOON, VOLVO and VOLKSWAGEN, or CROW and OWL. To warm you up, here are a few more Shortz shorties:

  1. Connecticut
  2. Obama
  3. Peach
  4. Genesis
  5. Matisse
  6. Omega
  7. Othello
  8. National

If we can’t crack them all as a squad, I will post the answers later next week. Though I’m more interested in unearthing treble-plus examples, or maybe a few more sweet doubles that Will could have chosen?

The Dutch beer AMSTEL, say, leads to the Belgian, STELLA ARTOIS, while GRENACHE can overlap with CHENIN BLANC. Feel free to extend the list with 2-3-4 overlaps, by supplying the opener to see if the rest of us can pick up the partner.

comments powered by Disqus

Rewording The Brain

Focus & memory, lateral leaps & logic - every aspect of cognitive health is lit in Rewording The Brain, a book revelling in how puzzles boost your brain. Part 2 equips your brain to conquer any twisty clue, plus the wild crossword finale. Pop science meets neural gameplay, Rewording is rewarding, and out now.


Rewording The Brain

Care to renew your noodle? Rewording The Brain explores the latest neural studies, seeing how puzzles (and twisty clues) boost your neurons. Part 2 helps you crack such clues, and prep the grey matter for the crossword showcase to finish. More here

read more +

101 Weird Words (and 3 Fakes)

From Ambidextrous to Zugwang, this mini-dictionary teems with rare or alluring words, plus bonus riddles, puzzles and fun word-facts. Dictionary detective will also nab the collection's three fakes. Ideal for late primary schoolers, or word-nuts in general.

read more +

Gargantuan Book of Words

Sneeze words. Fake pasta. Viking slang. Gargantuan is a jumbo jumble of puzzles & games, mazes & quizzes, tailor-made for that wordy wonderkid in your life. Or anyone in love with letters, secret codes, puns, rhymes, emoji & all things languagey. More 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