Word Power Quiz: Can You Define These Common Crossword Puzzle Answers?
Certain otherwise obscure words show up repeatedly in crossword grids because they’re short, full of vowels or both. Take your solving skills to the next level by studying some crosswordese.
Crossword puzzle answer #1: Aria
A: Plot of land
B: Circle of refracted sky visible to underwater divers
C: Opera song for one accompanied voice
Answer: C—Opera song for one accompanied voice
As in, “On days when she awoke in a cheery mood, Lesley would sing arias from L’elisir d’amore in the shower.”
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Crossword puzzle answer #2: Erne
A: Tall vase on a pedestal
B: Sea eagle
C: White fur made from ermine
Answer: B—Sea eagle
As in, “An erne snatched a fish from just under the water’s surface.”
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Answer: A—Emperor of Russia
As in, “DNA from living relatives was used to authenticate the suspected remains of Tsar Nicholas II.”
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Crossword puzzle answer #4: Nib
A: Small gold nugget
B: Mug handle
C: Point of a pen
Answer: C—Point of a pen
As in, “The secret to Derrick’s elegant handwriting was a fountain pen with a flexible nib.”
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Crossword puzzle answer #5: Ire
As in, “The decision to make Parade Avenue a pedestrian-only street drew a mixture of praise and ire from citizens.”
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Answer: A—Light beige
As in, “Ondrej convinced his landlord to let him add some colour to his apartment’s ecru walls.”
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Crossword puzzle answer #7: Ilia
A: Bacteria capable of causing sickness
B: Large bones in the upper half of the pelvis
C: Ear-shaped seashell
Answer: B—Large bones in the upper half of the pelvis
As in, “Sylvia fractured both her ilia by falling off her motorcycle.”
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Crossword puzzle answer #8: Arid
A: Very dry
B: Void of air
C: Solid as a rock
Answer: A—Very dry
As in, “Having moved to an arid climate, Vikram opted not to waste water on a lawn.”
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Answer: B—Craving to eat substances that aren’t foods
As in, “Young kids aren’t usually diagnosed with pica because it’s normal for them to chew on everything.”
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Crossword puzzle answer #10: Nard
A: Person with an intense interest in a topic
B: Narcotics officer
C: Aromatic Himalayan plant
Answer: C—Aromatic Himalayan plant
As in, “Nard is mentioned in the Bible as an erotic scent.”
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Crossword puzzle answer #11: Stoa
A: Guard who remains immobile so long as there’s no threat
B: Covered walkway supported by evenly spaced columns
C: Unit of 100 soldiers
Answer: B—Covered walkway supported by evenly spaced columns
As in, “The Stoa Poikile (“painted stoa”) of ancient Athens featured illustrations of battles.”
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Answer: C—Make something last by using it frugally
As in, “Lucie eked out her remaining funds until her late paycheque finally arrived.”
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Crossword puzzle answer #13: Etui
A: Accusation of betrayal
B: Musical composition for improving finger dexterity
C: Small ornamental case
Answer: C—Small ornamental case
As in, “Xuejiao kept sewing needles and a thimble in an antique silk etui.”
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Crossword puzzle answer #14: Épée
A: Fencing sword with a bowl-shaped guard
B: French epic
C: Lace on the shoulder of a gown
Answer: A—Fencing sword with a bowl-shaped guard
As in, “Paralympian épée fencers wear metal-lined aprons over their legs and wheelchairs.”
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Ode: A—Lyric poem that addresses its subject in an irregular metre
As in, “Pablo Neruda wrote odes to such commonplace objects as his socks, an onion and a bar of soap.”
Next, check out 20 printable crossword puzzles that’ll give your brain a workout.