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Cunard's crossword cruise salutes the New York Times puzzle's 75th year

Cunard's crossword cruise salutes the New York Times puzzle's 75th year
The crossword-centric cruise sails from New York City on Dec. 7 aboard the Queen Mary 2. (Cunard Line)

Want more than a little wordplay on your next cruise? Consider the New York Times Crossword Crossing, a transatlantic sailing on the Queen Mary 2 that marks the 75th anniversary of the beloved puzzle.

Expect daily crossword games, tutorials on how to create puzzles, tournaments, word-laced cocktail parties and on-board lectures by pros, but first a little history.

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The crossword debuted in the New York World newspaper on Dec. 21, 1913. Credit goes to the paper's editor, British immigrant Arthur Wynne, whom the Guardian newspaper describes as an onion farmer turned journalist.

The New York Times ran its first puzzle in 1942 after the bombing of Pearl Harbor. The idea was to offer readers a respite from the deadly attack, a news release says. It became a daily feature in 1950.

Back to those crossword experts. Deb Amien, editor of the New York Times' "Wordplay" crossword column; the paper's digital puzzles editor Joel Fagliano; and Wall Street Journal language columnist Ben Zimmer will be featured guests.

The cruise leaves New York City on Dec. 7 and arrives in Southampton, England, on Dec. 15. Prices start at $799 a night, plus $77.25 in fees and port tax.

Info: Cunard's Crossword Crossing, (800) 728-6273 or contact a travel agent

You can also book a Times Journeys package that adds brunch with New York Times puzzle editor Will Shortz before the cruise (he will not be on sailing). Cabins start at $2,895; call (855) 698-7979.

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Twitter: @latimestravel

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