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Here is a puzzle made by a friend of mine that I’ve been staring at for a while:

The crossword needs to be filled with the 26 letters of the alphabet, each letter can only only be used once and obviously each row or column has to make a real word as it would do in a crossword.

I believe there are two ways to complete the puzzle. Good luck

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    $\begingroup$ There's a lot of guessing and overall unpredictability involved in this. Can we get a hint for some of the numbers? $\endgroup$ Aug 11, 2018 at 0:07
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    $\begingroup$ @North- agreed. However, part /type of puzzle solving involves brute force/ trial-and-error...which, in a certain limits are amusing. $\endgroup$ Aug 11, 2018 at 3:22
  • $\begingroup$ Was this inspired by a GCHQ puzzle, by any chance? The very last puzzle (14th one) in this post? $\endgroup$
    – Mr Pie
    Sep 19, 2018 at 13:10

2 Answers 2


I think there are much more than 2 solutions. My friend and I came up with this:


  • $\begingroup$ +1 Great answer with no proper nouns necessary. $\endgroup$
    – hexomino
    Aug 18, 2018 at 20:32
  • $\begingroup$ Nice! 'm positive there are more than one ways of solving this. I have a feeling there are more solutions. $\endgroup$ Aug 21, 2018 at 0:10

I have found a solution which can coincide with a valid crossword

enter image description here

Possible clues

2. Zen and chi are confused by small shiny disc.
4. A voice finds its ring between 5 and 10.
5. Insect which does itself?
7. A type of do that may interest deer.
8. Iranian rug is uneasy without Al.

1. Religious people who can find French woman to make ornaments.
3. The first vessels which play music?
6. Sounds like you will follow behind in Azerbaijan.

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    $\begingroup$ Nice! I hadn't considered using proper nouns such as I-Pods .... lol. I like your clues, btw. $\endgroup$ Aug 17, 2018 at 2:28
  • $\begingroup$ @North Good point, it would be an additional challenge to do it without using proper nouns. I'm not sure if that is what the author had in mind $\endgroup$
    – hexomino
    Aug 17, 2018 at 8:49
  • $\begingroup$ (ROT13) Fubhyqa'g gur jbeq (1, qbja) or WRJRYYREL vafgrnq bs WRJEL? $\endgroup$
    – Mr Pie
    Aug 18, 2018 at 11:41
  • $\begingroup$ @user477343 "Wrjel" vf n abha juvpu ersref gb Wrjf pbyyrpgviryl. V unir abqqrq gb gur jbeq wrjryyrel va gur pelcgvp pyhr (gur Serapu jbzna ersreevat gb gur "ryyr" cneg). Ubcr gung znxrf frafr. $\endgroup$
    – hexomino
    Aug 18, 2018 at 20:28

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