How to SOLVE Cryptic Crosswords for BEGINNERS Part 1 | Basics Explained

Doctor Azmain
26 Jun 202106:35
32 Likes 10 Comments

TLDRIn this informative video, junior doctor Azmain from London introduces viewers to the world of cryptic crosswords, offering guidance for beginners. He explains the basic rules, including the importance of recognizing definitions within clues and the various types of cryptic wordplay. Azmain covers anagrams, charades, and hidden words, providing examples and tips for parsing clues. His enthusiastic teaching style encourages viewers to embrace the challenge and enjoy the intellectual exercise.

  • 📰 Cryptic crosswords are puzzles that involve intellectual wordplay, including anagrams, charades, puns, and double definitions.
  • 🎯 The standard crossword grid is typically 15 by 15 squares, maintaining rotational symmetry for an aesthetically pleasing pattern.
  • 🔍 Cryptic clues are codes, not sentences, and should not be read too literally; the definition is usually at the beginning or end of the clue.
  • 🧩 Anagrams involve rearranging letters from a word or phrase in the clue to find the answer, with indicator words suggesting change or movement.
  • 🤹 Charades clues join individually clued words to form the answer or part of it, often with grammatical ambiguity.
  • 💰 In the example 'Outlaw leader managing money', 'outlaw' as a verb (BAN) and 'leader' (KING) combine to form 'BANKING'.
  • 🔖 Hidden words clues have the answer within the words of the clue, using indicators like 'in part', 'partially', or 'within'.
  • 📌 Initialisms are a type of hidden words clue where the first letters of parts of the clue form the answer.
  • 🔢 Odd or even letters clues require combining a specific sequence of letters from the clue to reveal the hidden answer.
  • 🎉 The video aims to demystify cryptic crosswords and encourage solvers to approach the puzzles with confidence.
  • 👋 Stay tuned for part two, which will cover additional common types of cryptic crossword clues.
Q & A
  • What is the main topic of the video?

    -The main topic of the video is to provide an introduction and guidance on solving cryptic crosswords.

  • What are some of the wordplay techniques used in cryptic crosswords?

    -Some of the wordplay techniques used in cryptic crosswords include anagrams, charades, puns, and double definitions.

  • How does the speaker describe the attitude one should have towards solving cryptic crosswords?

    -The speaker encourages a positive and confident attitude, discouraging the belief that one cannot solve cryptic crosswords.

  • What is the standard size of the crossword grid mentioned in the video?

    -The standard size of the crossword grid mentioned is 15 by 15 squares.

  • What is the significance of the 180-degree rotational symmetry in the crossword grid?

    -The 180-degree rotational symmetry means that if you rotate the grid 180 degrees, it will look exactly the same.

  • How do cryptic clues differ from standard crossword clues?

    -Cryptic clues are codes, not sentences. They often contain the definition at the beginning or end, and the remainder of the clue is cryptic wordplay.

  • What is an example of an anagram indicator in a cryptic clue?

    -An example of an anagram indicator includes words like 'strange', 'muddled', 'wild', 'drunk', 'upset', and 'chaotic'.

  • How does the speaker define 'charades' in the context of cryptic crosswords?

    -Charades are clues where individually clued words are joined together to form the answer or part of the answer, without necessarily needing indicator words.

  • What is a hidden word clue in cryptic crosswords?

    -A hidden word clue is where the answer appears within the clue itself, contained within one or more words.

  • How does the video suggest one can enhance their understanding of cryptic crosswords?

    -The video suggests that understanding the basic rules and major clue types, such as anagrams, charades, and hidden words, can help one enhance their ability to solve cryptic crosswords.

  • What advice does the speaker give to viewers who find cryptic crosswords challenging?

    -The speaker advises viewers to maintain a positive attitude, learn the basic rules and clue types, and to not be fooled by the sentence-like structure of the clues.

🧩 Introduction to Cryptic Crosswords

This paragraph introduces the video's purpose, which is to help viewers understand and solve cryptic crosswords. The speaker, Azmain, a junior doctor from London, addresses the common confusion and frustration with cryptic crosswords and offers guidance. He explains the basics of crossword grids, including their symmetry, and then delves into the unique rules of cryptic crosswords. The paragraph emphasizes that cryptic clues are codes rather than sentences and introduces the concept of parsing clues to separate the definition from the cryptic wordplay. The video promises to cover major clue types such as anagrams, charades, and hidden words, providing examples for each to illustrate the solving process.

🔍 Solving Techniques for Cryptic Crosswords

The second paragraph focuses on specific techniques for solving cryptic crosswords, emphasizing the importance of understanding the different types of clues. It discusses hidden words, where the answer is embedded within the clue, and provides examples of indicator words that suggest this type of clue. The paragraph also explains initialisms and odd or even letter clues as methods to extract the hidden answer. An example clue is dissected to demonstrate how to identify the hidden word within the given text, reinforcing the video's educational goal of teaching viewers how to tackle cryptic crosswords effectively.

💡Cryptic Crosswords
Cryptic crosswords are a type of word puzzle that requires the solver to use a combination of logic and wordplay to fill in the grid. Unlike standard crosswords, cryptic clues often involve anagrams, charades, puns, and hidden words, making them more challenging and intellectually stimulating. In the video, the presenter aims to demystify these puzzles by explaining the basic rules and common clue types, such as anagrams and charades, to help viewers understand and enjoy solving cryptic crosswords.
An anagram is a word or phrase formed by rearranging the letters of a different word or phrase, typically using all the original letters exactly once. In the context of cryptic crosswords, anagrams are a common type of clue where solvers must identify a word or phrase in the clue that can be rearranged to form the answer. Indicator words in the clues, such as 'shredded' or 'dancing', signal that an anagram is required.
Charades in cryptic crosswords refer to clues where individually clued words are combined to form the answer or part of the answer. Unlike anagrams, charades do not require specific indicator words but may include them to suggest position or direction. These clues often involve grammatical ambiguity and require solvers to interpret the clues creatively to find the correct combination of words.
💡Hidden Words
Hidden words are a type of cryptic crossword clue where the answer is concealed within the words of the clue itself. This can be done through initialisms, where the first letters of certain words are taken to form the answer, or by using words that contain the answer within them. Indicator words like 'in part', 'partially', 'within', or 'hides' often signal the presence of hidden words.
💡Indicator Words
Indicator words in cryptic crosswords are specific words that signal the type of wordplay involved in a clue. They guide the solver on how to manipulate the words or letters to find the solution. For anagrams, indicators might suggest change or movement, while for hidden words, they might suggest inclusion or concealment within other words.
💡Clue Types
Clue types in cryptic crosswords refer to the different methods or techniques used to construct the clues. These types include anagrams, charades, hidden words, and others that involve wordplay and require the solver to interpret the clues in a non-literal way. Understanding the different clue types is essential for solving cryptic crosswords effectively.
Wordplay is a form of literary or verbal humor in which words are used in ways that deviate from their standard definitions or meanings to create a joke or puzzle. In cryptic crosswords, wordplay is central to the clues, often involving puns, homophones, anagrams, and other linguistic tricks to mislead the solver and provide a challenge.
In the context of cryptic crosswords, a definition is the part of the clue that provides the actual meaning or description of the answer word. It is typically found at the beginning or end of the clue and is crucial for the solver to identify in order to understand what word they are looking for.
Symmetry in a crossword grid refers to the pattern in which the squares are arranged to maintain a balanced and aesthetically pleasing design. In standard crosswords, this often means the grid has a 180-degree rotational symmetry, meaning it looks the same when rotated halfway. Some grids may also have 90-degree rotational symmetry. This aspect is important for the visual appeal of the puzzle and does not directly affect the solving process.
Parsing in the context of cryptic crosswords involves the process of analyzing a clue to determine its components. Solvers must discern which part of the clue provides the definition and which part contains the cryptic wordplay. This skill is essential for solving the puzzle, as it helps to identify the structure of the clue and how to approach finding the answer.

Azmain introduces himself as a junior doctor from London.

The video aims to help people understand cryptic crosswords.

Cryptic crosswords involve anagrams, charades, puns, and double definitions.

The standard crossword grid is 15 by 15 squares with rotational symmetry.

Cryptic clues are codes, not sentences, and often contain a definition at the beginning or end.

Anagrams in cryptic crosswords involve rearranging letters of a word or phrase in the clue.

Indicator words for anagrams may reference change, doubt, confusion, or movement.

The word 'ESCORT' is an example of an anagram answer derived from 'chaperone shredded corset'.

Charades clues involve individually clued words that combine to form the answer.

The example 'Outlaw leader managing money' leads to the charade answer 'BANKING'.

Hidden words clues include the answer within the clue, sometimes using initialisms or specific letters.

The word 'UNDERMINED' is an example of a hidden word answer found within 'Found ermine, deer hides damaged'.

The video provides a basic introduction to cryptic crosswords and their rules.

Azmain encourages viewers to approach cryptic crosswords with a positive attitude.

The video features animations and jazz music to enhance the learning experience.

The video is part of a series, with part two promising to discuss other common clue types.

Azmain uses humor and pop culture references, such as quotes from Shia LaBeouf and Keanu Reeves, to engage viewers.

Rate This

5.0 / 5 (0 votes)

Thanks for rating: