Cryptic Crosswords

Each issue of The ENIGMA features a member-written cryptic crossword puzzle. (A general explanation of cryptic crosswords and how to solve them is available from a netnews FAQ list.)FIXME

Here's a sample cryptic crossword puzzle from The ENIGMA; it's also available in PostScript and GIF formats.


This puzzle doesn't have separate Across and Down clues because the rows and the columns in the completed diagram are the same. In other words, the letters in the puzzle are symmetric about the diagonal that runs from the upper left to the lower right. Each row and column of this puzzle consists of a 12-letter mixed-case sequence formed by “interweaving” two six-letter words. These two six-letter words, called long and short, are interwoven according to a pattern specified by a third code word in a manner to be determined by solvers. The letters from the long word are to be entered in all UPPER CASE, and those from the short word in all lower case. As an example, if the long word were cubist and the short word Braque, the corresponding row and column might be bCUraBIqSueT, given the proper code word. Note that the letters do not strictly alternate, but the letters of the two six-letter words appear in their proper sequence. There are four unclued words that name a well-known artist to whom this puzzle is dedicated.

Clue answers include a few words of foreign origin. All answers (as well as the full name of our artist friend) can be found in Webster's New Collegiate Dictionary, 10th edition, but 4 short and 8 long are not very common.

[The Diagram]


  1. code: Strange image appearing around Nile's source, something like the Sphinx (6)
    long: See instructions.
    short: See instructions.
  2. code: Authentic ketchup bottles label (6)
    long: Fantastic verist endeavor
    short: Embarrassment in France: one art supporter left out
  3. code: One starts off from “Fun City” (5)
    long: Incorrectly tagged contraption
    short: Mixed sienna like Van Gogh near the end
  4. code: Cause foul odor coming out of one's mouth (5)
    long: Plaque bearing inscription of pitched battle
    short: Poles placed on either side of privy to smooth fabrics.
  5. code: Mucus coating the back of Rousseau's nose (5)
    long: See instructions.
    short: Reduce oral instruction
  6. code: Leave off sleeping costume (5)
    long: Extremely bad art houses showed a movie
    short: Engine with terminals made a painful condition
  7. code: Large number of pointless excesses in ancient Rome (6)
    long: Note item returned for trade
    short: Apply oil paint with no beginning and no inside
  8. code: Carried on when Degas turned west instead of south (5)
    long: Running through the countryside, a terpsichorean muse
    short: Inter-net mob running amok
  9. code: Long night after 365 days (5)
    long: Dubious yarn used in knotted rug is not so pretty
    short: Men like Goya, Dali, and Rivera: heartless old fellows
  10. code: Crazy but genial (6)
    long: Retreat is reversed after First Lady made uniform
    short: Cafeteria food, reportedly?
  11. code: Seven long and loud (5)
    long: Compounds in three-month periods, missing the initial cut off
    short: They agree with enemy's organization (hyph.)
  12. code: See instructions.
    long: Landlord's bull
    short: Missing seaman delivered

This puzzle is also available in either PostScript or GIF format.

Here is the solution.

Now maybe you'd like to learn how to join us?
…or go back to the puzzles not in verse.

[ Intro | Contents | Verse Puzzles | Non-verse Puzzles | All Solutions | Join us! | Home ]

Copyright © 1893-2003, National Puzzlers' League. All rights reserved.
For permissions, apply to the

mini-1993/artist.txt · Last modified: 2007/10/24 05:25 by kite
Recent changes RSS feed Powered by PHP Valid XHTML 1.0 Valid CSS Driven by DokuWiki

All content is copyright © 1893-2017, National Puzzlers' League. All rights reserved. For permissions, apply to the editor.