1590s, pusle "bewilder, confound, perplex with difficult problems or questions," possibly frequentative of pose (v.) in obsolete sense of "perplex" (compare nuzzle from nose). To puzzle (something) out "resolve or discover by long cogitation or careful investigation" is by 1781. Related: Puzzled; puzzling.
c. 1600, "state of being puzzled," from puzzle (v.); meaning "perplexing question, difficult problem" is from 1650s; that of "a toy contrived to test one's ingenuity" is from 1814. Puzzle-ring "number of small rings intertwined inseparably with one another that can be arranged as a single ring" is by 1877.
"bewildering, perplexing," 1660s, present-participle adjective from puzzle (v.). Related: Puzzlingly.
also jig-saw, vertical reciprocating saw, 1855, American English, from jig with its notion of "rapid up-and-down motion" + saw (n.1). It was largely displaced by the later band-saws. Jigsaw puzzle first recorded 1906; originally one with pieces cut by a jigsaw. Earlier was dissected map (or picture), 1807, "map or picture mounted on board and divided into more or less irregular parts, to be joined together as a puzzle."
1570s, "to pose as a riddle, speak in riddles," from riddle (n.1). Earlier it meant "to puzzle" (over something), early 15c. Transitive sense of "to interpret or solve a riddle" is from 1580s (as in riddle me this). Related: Riddled; riddler; riddling.