Word-Cross creator, 1938.
Word-Cross creator, 1938. Bettmann/Corbis
Created by a British-American wordsmith, the very first Word-Cross appeared in the New York World on Dec. 21, 1913. And the crossword puzzle — as we know it — was born.
To observe the centennial anniversary, NPR serves up the original grid of FUN's Word-Cross Puzzle with new, updated clues and words. There are other parallels with that proto puzzle. For instance:
— The word FUN is a given in both. Across and Down are not noted.
— The first crossword repeated the word "dove." This offering repeats a word as well.
— A couple of the clues (and their solutions) in this puzzle were in that very first one; those appear in bold.
Download and solve an anniversary crossword puzzle created by Ask Me Another.
— Some of the words are obscure — because they are a century old and because that first puzzler was from England.
— Many clues have links, and some tell you more about the first crossword and 1913.
So without further ado ...
100 Years Of Solvitude: A Reported Crossword Puzzle
To quote the original instructions: "Fill in the small squares with words which agree with the following definitions." (A link to this puzzle's solution is below.)
2-3. Peg O' My Heart and You Made Me Love You. Popular in 1913.
4-5. Opening line of Say It Loud: I'm Black and I'm Proud: "Uh, with your _ _."
6-7. What certain letters form.
10-11. What you might find in a car's boot.
22-23. Centuries and centuries.
26-27. Teddy Roosevelt battled this disease in 1913.
28-29. "_ _ is an island — John Donne.
30-31. The tool of confident crossworders.
8-9. Baby powder.
12-13. True that.
16-17. A _ With a View by E.M. Forster.
20-21. Star of 1913 silent movie The Battle of Elderbush Gulch.
24-25. Crosswords became one of these in the 1920s.
10-18. 19th letter of Greek alphabet.
6-22. First crossword creator Arthur _.
4-26. What drives some crossworders.
2-11. A vetch.
19-28. Second son of Judah in Bible.
F-7. Wabbit hunter Elmer _.
23-30. Feed the pig.
1-32. Highest forms of humor, to some of us.
33-34. The end of a prayer.
N-8. Brit acronym for: Not in Education, Employment or Training.
24-31. Kukla and Ollie's friend.
3-12. Cole _.
20-29. No pain; no _.
5-27. Where Arthur Wynne died in 1945.
9-25. _ word puzzle.
13-21. The fibre of the gomuti palm and what Homer Simpson might say about this puzzle.
Click here for the solution.
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