How Do You Answer Cryptic Crosswords?

What does Spooner mean in cryptic crosswords?

If you have ever tackled a cryptic crossword you will have come across the name Spooner or the term spoonerism for a clue where initial letters are swapped e.g.

‘fight the liar’ for ‘light the fire’.

Spooner was an albino and as such, suffered from defective eyesight..

What does reportedly mean in cryptic crossword?

‘Sounds like’ – giving clues to words that sound like the answer, or part of it. Words or phrases to indicate this include ‘we hear’ and ‘reportedly’ ‘Single letter’ – indicates individual letters (not always indicators – could just be the letter itself, particularly in the case of ‘a’).

What is the difference between a spoonerism and a malapropism?

A spoonerism is a verbal mistake in which the initial consonant sounds of two words are transposed, often to comedic effect. … A malapropism is the verbal mistake in which a word is substituted with another word that sounds similar but means something entirely different, often to comedic effect.

What do circles mean in crosswords?

Circle-in-the-square is a type of crossword puzzle in which circles appear in some of the Answer squares. … the letters in squares that contain circles spell out words related to the theme either when read consecutively or when rearranged to form theme-related words.

Why is study con in crosswords?

You’d just be expected to know that ‘con’ is very often associated with ‘study’ in cryptic crosswords. It’s not an idiosyncracy of one single crossword setter, it’s a common convention. Think of it as being part of the rules of the game rather than part of the ‘problem-solving’ procedure.

How do you write a cryptic clue?

The majority of clues in a cryptic crossword adhere to these standards:Every cryptic clue includes a straight definition of the answer, just like in a ‘regular’ crossword. … The definition part of the clue will always be at the start or end of the clue, and never sandwiched in the middle.More items…

How do you get good at crosswords?

6 tips that will help you master crossword puzzles from the national championStart off with easier puzzles. … Try to learn a little of everything. … Google is your friend. … Start with the blanks. … Recognize words that appear over and over. … Stay cool.

What is a cryptic puzzle?

A cryptic crossword is a crossword puzzle in which each clue is a word puzzle in and of itself. … In the United States, cryptics are sometimes known as “British-style” crosswords. Compilers of cryptic crosswords are commonly called “setters” in the UK.

What does say mean in crosswords?

“Say” for EG, used to mean “for example”.

What do numbers mean in cryptic crosswords?

Cryptic clues are followed by a number or numbers in parentheses indicating the length of the answer: (5) means it’s a five-letter word, while (2,3,4) indicates a three-word phrase like “in the know.”

What does Pref mean in crosswords?

Clue 36 across is ‘Modern: pref. ‘ Crosswords tends to have a language of their own, and the most frustrating part is understanding the directions. In this case, the puzzle asks for another word for ‘modern’ that’s a prefix. Because it’s written ‘pref. ‘, the answer will be shortened or abbreviated.

What does we hear mean in cryptic crosswords?

Remained sober, so we hear (6) You should read this as: a word meaning remained which sounds the same as a word meaning sober. The fact that this is a homophone clue is signalled by the indicator so we hear. Other common homophone indicators are: heard, so it’s said, in speech.

What does cryptic mean?

mysterious in meaning; puzzling; ambiguous: a cryptic message. abrupt; terse; short: a cryptic note. secret; occult: a cryptic writing. involving or using cipher, code, etc.

What is a cryptic person?

(adjective) being beyond one’s powers to know, understand, or explain. (adjective) having an often intentionally veiled or uncertain meaning. (adjective) having a secret or hidden meaning.

How do you solve cryptic puzzles?

Beginner’s guide to solving cryptic crosswordsRead the clue. Then read it backwards. … Think about the rest of the clue. The part of the clue that is not the definition is known as the subsidiary indicator. … Harden your heart against the setter’s siren charms. … Repeat step three. … Look at the number of letters. … Solve the damn thing . . .

Which newspaper has the easiest cryptic crossword?

The easiest is the Everyman in the Observer, I’d think, but the Sunday Telegraph is very accessible too. The Independent on Sunday is usually not too difficult, though a little harder than the other two.

Can you learn to do cryptic crosswords?

Learn how to solve cryptic crosswords with this interactive app, starting with the basic ideas and easiest types of clue. “Learn Cryptic Crosswords” consists of six chapters that take you step by step through every aspect of solving cryptic clues.