National Puzzle Day

Do you kill it at Wordle, crush your opponents in Scrabble, or just like a good puzzle? National Puzzle Day is January 29th, and we’ve curated a selection of word puzzles and programs below that are sure to tickle the brains of word nerds and puzzle enthusiasts alike.

Be a Word Detective

Lexicon Lane

Get ready for a word-sleuthing adventure and discover mysteries galore in our immersive puzzle room. Reserve a puzzle case and search for clues along Lexicon Lane — great for team bonding or solo sleuthing!

Featured Past Programs

Special Event

Crosswords and the People Who Love Them with Adrienne Raphel

December 17, 2020 | 12:00 p.m.

If you’ve spent the pandemic perfecting your crossword puzzle skills, you’re not alone. Puzzles of all kinds have spiked in popularity this year. But those of us who revel in…

Series

Language & Games

February 15, 2022 | 6:30 p.m.

When Kathryn Hymes and Hakan Seyalıoğlu combined forces to create a game studio, they realized their combined backgrounds (she’s a linguist, he’s a cryptographer) allowed them to explore both the…

From the Advisory Board

Five Obscure(ish) Words for Crossword Puzzlers

Crossword puzzles have changed a lot in the past 25 years. Older puzzles were commonly filled with vocabulary that was almost never encountered outside of crosswords — called “crosswordese” — and you simply had to know them to be good at crosswords. Planet Word advisor and New York Times crossword editor Will Shortz shares five useful obscure words for crosswords.

Crossword Puzzles

Miscellaneous Puzzles

  • Did you know?

    Perhaps ironically, the word “sesquipedalophobia” means “the fear of long words.”
  • Did you know?

    “Contronyms” are words that contain multiple meanings that are complete opposites of each other. For example, “oversight” means both “the action of overseeing something” and “a failure to notice something.”
  • Did you know?

    There are over 7,000 languages worldwide, but more than half the world’s population speaks only 23 of these languages.
  • Did you know?

    The first entirely artificial language was the Lingua Ignota, a private mystical cant recorded in the 12th century by St. Hildegard of Bingen.
  • Did you know?

    The 10 most-used letters in English are E, A, R, I, O, T, N, S, L, and C.
  • Did you know?

    Eels, llamas, and aardvarks, ooh my! In English, there are only four letters that appear as double letters at the beginning of a word: A, E, L, and O.
  • Did you know?

    A “deipnosophist” is a person who’s really good at making conversation at the dinner table.
  • How do you get a dog to stop eating your books?

    Take the words right out of its mouth!
  • What's the difference between a cat and a comma?

    A cat has claws at the end of its paws, but a comma’s a pause at the end of a clause.
  • The past, the present, and the future walk into a bar...

    It was tense.
  • Is there a word that uses all the vowels including y?

    Unquestionably.
  • Riddle me this

    What did the intransitive verb say when told it was pretty? (Answer: Nothing. Intransitive verbs can’t take complements.)
  • Riddle me this

    What does an island and the letter T have in common? (Answer: They’re both in the middle of water.)
  • Riddle me this

    What word becomes shorter when you add two letters to it? (Answer: Short)
  • Riddle me this

    What starts with an e, ends with an e, and contains just one letter? (Answer: An envelope!)
  • Riddle me this

    What begins with a t, ends with a t, and has t in it? (Answer: A teapot!)
  • Riddle me this

    What’s in centuries, hours, and years, but not minutes, days, or seconds? (Answer: The letter R!)
  • Quote them on it

    “Outside of a dog, a book is a man’s best friend. Inside of a dog, it’s too dark to read.” — Groucho Marx
  • Quote them on it

    “The past is always tense, the future perfect.” — Zadie Smith
  • Quote them on it

    “If there is a book that you want to read, but it hasn’t been written yet, you must be the one to write it.” — Toni Morrison
  • Quote them on it

    “A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies...The man who never reads lives only once.” — George R.R. Martin
  • Quote them on it

    “If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart.” — Nelson Mandela