Latest News, Blog and Editorial

Hello September 2019

Have you noticed that we have the word orphan for a child whose parents have died, and widow or widower for a person whose spouse has died, but no word for a parent whose child has died? Author Jen Hutchison would like the word motherling to be used for a mother who has lost [more…]

Hello August 2019

Traitors sometimes pop up in our crossword clues, highlighting the fact that history is full of tales of treason. In some cases, the names of traitors have become words to describe a person who acts treacherously.

The most famous traitor is probably the biblical disciple Judas Iscariot, who indicated Jesus’ identity to the Temple [more…]

The left handed life

All left-handed people are evil, worthless, mysterious and bring bad luck. At least, that’s what they used to think in former days. The Latin word for left is ‘sinister’, which has only come to mean evil or treacherous because of its leftist leanings.The old Saxon word for left was ‘lyft’ which also meant worthless. [more…]

Hello July 2019

Puzzler Cathy Parker asks why we say we ‘fall’ asleep. One theory is that when you nod off in a chair, your head falls forward. If you’re lying down, it feels like falling, as you sink into the bed and go to sleep.

Another theory is that to fall asleep, like falling ill or falling [more…]

Six ways to keep your memory in tip-top condition

If you ever find yourself in the aisles of a supermarket not remembering what you’re there to buy, don’t worry, you’re not alone. We all have days when our memory seems to let us down and we forget not just the finer details, but basic information too.

Fortunately, there are plenty of simple ways to [more…]

Hello June 2019

Beer is one of the world’s oldest prepared drinks and the third most popular drink in the world, after water and tea – certainly the most consumed alcoholic drink.

Beer dates back to at least 5th millennium BC, in Iran. Cereal was first farmed around 10,000 BC, so it’s possible beer was brewed then, as [more…]

Variety Prize Puzzles 101 – Gremlin

GIANT STARBURST, page 9

The clue ‘Horror film, A Nightmare —‘ is missing its left-pointing arrow.

Thanks to Judith Boyd for alerting us to this error.

Hello May 2019

Our English language has a huge vocabulary – possibly larger than any other language.

This is because we have had so many varied sources. The Anglo-Saxons brought their West Germanic languages with them. After the Norman invasion of 1066, French became the language of the courts. The church, universities and legal world used Latin, [more…]

Our inspiring DIY winner Arthur Daniell

Our inspiring DIY winner Arthur Daniell will turn 100 this year! His winning crossword was published in Christine’s BIG Crossword 319.

Arthur Daniell was born on Yorke Peninsula, South Australia in 1919. He was the second youngest of 6 children. His parents settled on a dairy farm at Monteith on the River Murray [more…]