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...

Royal Huh (38)

6 March, 2013

In my madcap Clue Chase I came upon a crossword solved by Princess Margaret, the Queen’s sis, in 1954. (Curiously the same puzzle contained NESCIENCE, a word I haven’t spotted since the master solution in Puzzled.) And another clue, with a royal flavour, that may need your input.

The Princess clue – from Country Life magazine – is the first. The others come from British fare that need elucidating. (And alternative clues, if Operation Ipcress hasn’t depleted your stocks.)

  1. It’s a draw. “Queen Anne’s dead, chum!” = STALEMATE [Proof the Princess was cluey. I don’t see the logic of this name-call.]

  2. Mythical figure telling a lot of liverpudlian’s story = LORELEI [In Times 9505, I can hear ‘lie’ but not the rest.]

  3. Japanese drama accepting sci-fi writer’s help = NOURISH [Dear Anax, since when was Leon a Vulcanite? Or am I missing some of his canon?]

comments powered by Disqus

Gargantuan News

Yep, my Gargantuan Book of Words is big & full of words. Not just English but secret codes, Papuan pidgin, Zulu worms, sound FX, funny goldfish, letter origami. You get the drift? It's big. It's fun. And it's out now


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 +


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 +


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 +

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