The crossword was invented over 90 years ago (here‘s the very first one, from December 1913), and after the publication of the first collection in 1924 became popular around the world. They’re online in Russian, Arabic, Norwegian, Latin, and doubtless many other languages. And you will want to take a timeless moment to contemplate the Zen crossword. (From Ben Goetter scartol‘s MonkeyFilter post.)


  1. ‘Twas scartol’s post, not mine, sir.
    *returns to scratching his head at the horror crossword*

  2. Right you are (and selfless, too). Don’t know how I managed to make that error, but I’ve fixed it now. Good luck with the puzzle; I can’t stand cryptics, so I’m no help there.

  3. Am I the only lover of words who’s only ever tried to do one crossword puzzle (and that many years ago)? I just don’t see the point of them.
    (Actually, I can’t do them).

  4. They’re online in Russian, Arabic, Norwegian, Latin, and doubtless many other languages.
    Like Greek, at the online edition of Τα Νέα: see the daily σταυρόλεξο here (I wish I could link to Ελευθεροτυπία, my “default” favorite newspaper, but they don’t have that feature online). It looks more like the “Trivial Pursuit” than a wordgame, though, with questions like “Milou en mai [title translated] is one of his movies” (Ταινία του «Ο Μιλού τον Μάη»; the answer is Μαλ, for Louis Malle) or “A city in the state of Nebraska, USA” (Πόλη των ΗΠΑ στην Πολιτεία Νεμπράσκα). Note the precision “with article” for some personal names: “one of the main characters in Euripides’ tragedy Andromakhi” [Ένα από τα κύρια πρόσωπα της τραγωδίας του Ευριπίδη «Ανδρομάχη» (με άρθρο)].
    (I must say that, for some reason, I could never get into any wordplay, even though it is a very “oulipesque” passe-temps.)

  5. Aya, I guess it’s Andromache (and “oulipian”, for that matter, but I’m sure Queneau and Pérec would approve of “oulipesque”).

  6. The Zen crossword is, alas, already complete — nobody can complete it. The farthest I got into Glasperlenspiel was the anti-crossword rant near the beginning; it kinda turned me off to see a favorite pastime of mine described in such a derogatory way. (But now I think about Glasperlenspiel any time I do a crossword — gotta go back sometime and try it out again.)

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