Conundrum: 1-D Shakespeare Crossword

Most crossword puzzles are two-dimensional. They have across and down clues.

This puzzle is one-dimensional. It has forward and backward clues. And all of the answers have to do with Shakespeare.

There’s not much space here, but imagine a horizontal row of 39 squares.

There are no black squares. All answers should be run together one after another with no spaces.

Post whatever you come up with. Feel free to use the comments section of this post to collaborate. The final answer will be a string of 39 letters that can be read in both directions.


Forward (Left to Right)

1 – 8: Hamlet’s home

9 – 12: Briefly betrothed to Edward IV

13 – 16: The smallest fairy?

17 – 20: “A Lover’s Complaint”

21 – 26: Speaker of “If music be the food of love, play on”

27 – 32: Does Macbeth see one before him?

33 – 39: Twelfth Night‘s Antonio once wore one (2 words)

Backward (Right to Left)

39 – 38: Scotland setting in Macbeth-like film

37 – 32: He is as constant as the northern star

31 – 29: Lear’s Fool will give you two crowns for one of these

28 – 23: The love of Venus

22 – 18: He loved Rosaline first

17 – 14: Companion to Hal and Falstaff at the Boar’s Head

13 – 11: What a piece of work it is!

10 – 5: He knows a bank where the wild thyme blows

4 – 1: Tempest setting

UPDATE: See comments for a big hint by Duane.

8 Responses to “Conundrum: 1-D Shakespeare Crossword”

  1. Duane Says:


    I got all the answers but I don’t want to spoil it for the next guy :).

    And if I get in trouble at work, I’m blaming you, feeding my addictions. Shame on you.



  2. Bill Says:

    Duane, your answers look good. I guess it takes a Shakespeare Geek…

    Can anyone fill in the blanks?

  3. Brian Says:

    omg, are you serious with this? LOL

  4. Bill Says:

    Actually, it’s not that difficult, if you know your Shakespeare backwards and forwards.

  5. One Dimensional Crosswords &raquo Says:

    […] I recently found a good example of this kind of puzzle on a site dedicated to Shakespeare (and so, it has a Shakespeare theme.)  There’s also a puzzle of this kind on Trip Payne’s site.  There, it’s called Spiral #1.  It’s laid out in the form of a spiral, but the puzzle is the same concept. Tags: crossword puzzles Posted by Josh in Types/Variations (Friday June 1, 2007 at 10:20 am) […]

  6. Bill Says:

    Welcome puzzle fans!

    Visitors from might also enjoy the weekly Conundrum, which often features a new (as far as I know) genre of puzzle called a Venn Diagram puzzle.

    You also might enjoy the Thursday Morning Riddle, another weekly feature on the blog.

    Thanks for visiting. But with all these puzzle fans visiting, can nobody but the Shakespeare Geek solve this puzzle?

  7. Shakespeare Teacher » Blog Archive » Googleplex – 2/7/10 Says:

    […] if you’re looking for some Shakespeare-spelled-backwards fun, check out this still-unsolved puzzle from the archives. And feel free to solve […]

  8. Shakespeare Crossword, Anyone? | Shakespeare Geek, The Original Shakespeare Blog Says:

    […] Shakespeare Teacher’s got a Shakespeare crossword up, with a twist.  Well, in this case without any actual twists (or crosses?), as it is a “one dimensional” puzzle.  You may have seen these before.  The clues are given “left to right” and then “right to left”, so whatever you put in as the answers for one side has to match the answers going in the opposite direction.  Try it out!   […]

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