AZED CROSSWORD 1303
1. R. V. Dearden: One heat-oppressed brain could produce this probe thane sees (comp. anag., & lit., ref. Macbeth 2, 1, 39).
2. M. A. Macdonald-Cooper: Plunge knife in, and sew up after surgery’s over? (op (rev.) + drain (rev.)).
3. F. P. N. Lake: Wielded with hate, it may bring pain or death (comp. anag. & lit.).
Ms E. Allen: I’ll drive home sharply, in case rain returns (rain (rev.) in pod).
J. R. Beresford: Do in with a prod (anag. & lit.).
R. M. S. Cork: Death by a calm twisting with this dagger is enough to make Lady Macbeth paranoid (comp. anag.).
E. Dawid: Wound in a prod? (anag. & lit.).
N. C. Dexter: It causes rapid suffering on being stuck in (on in anag. & lit.).
R. R. Greenfield: Solemn-faced, I darn, plying the old bodkin (po + anag.).
C. R. Gumbrell: Do in with a prod? (anag. & lit.).
A. Hall: ‘Stab wound’ on a drip (anag.).
P. F. Henderson: Take one in upward thrust into belly – and it could be fatal! (r a in (all rev.) in pod).
R. Hesketh: Do in with a prod (anag. & lit.).
R. J. Hooper: Half-formed ‘air-drawn’ fancy seen with play’s leading character alone on stage? (p on + air-d (anag.), & lit.; ref ‘Macbeth’ 2, 1 & 3, 4, 62).
Mrs J. Mackie: Dudgeon that could become paranoid, turning out close to dementia (anag. less a).
D. F. Manley: Article projected by paranoid in play (anag. less a, & lit.; ref. ‘Macbeth’).
C. G. Millin: Weapon bringing about Caesar’s end, one at home in a sheath (ra in (all rev.) in pod, & lit.).
C. J. Morse: Put a prod in viciously (anag. & lit.).
M. Sanderson: What could produce pain with ord? (anag. & lit.).
D. J. Short: You may get hurt in a prod with this (anag. & lit.).
K. Trapp: Parking in road when it’s wrong, you’ll get a little sticker (P + anag.).
L. Ward: Have a stab at translating Pindaric ode. No dice! (anag. less dice).
P. O. G. White: Portillo’s gutted – ‘loss must be reversed’ – pink with rage? (Po + drain (rev.)).
B. Ashworth, E. A. Beaulah, Mrs F. A. Blanchard, C. J. Brougham, Rev Canon C. M. Broun, E. J. Burge, B. Burton, Mrs M. J. Cansfield, C. A. Clarke, M. Coates, G. Cumming, G. Cuthbert, V. Dixon, A. J. Dorn, P. S. Elliott, Dr I. S. Fletcher, R. P. C. Forman, B. Grabowski, Mrs E. Greenaway, R. Hope-Jones, C. Hopkins, J. G. Hull, G. Johnstone, R. K. Lumsdon, P. W. Marlow, I. D. McDonald, G. D. Meddings, T. J. Moorey, A. C. Morrison, C. J. Napier, F. R. Palmer, R. J. Palmer, J. Pearce, G. Perry, Mrs E. M. Phair, A. J. Pinel, Dr T. G. Powell, D. Price Jones, D. R. Robinson, J. H. Russell, H. R. Sanders, Mrs I. G. Smith, J. B. Sweeting, Dr I. Torbe, Mrs J. E. Townsend, J. R. Tozer, A. P. Vincent, A. J. Wardrop, M. A. L. Willey, D. Williamson, J. S. Witte, Dr E. Young.
290 entries, no mistakes. My clue to GYMNAST puzzled one or two (‘Strong Olympian will wallop —— in poor little, league’). It’s a composite anagram & lit., GYMNAST IN POOR L (little league) being an anagram of STRONG OLYMPIAN. I inserted ‘little’ at a late proof stage, thinking to make things fairer, but it would have passed muster, and perhaps been clearer, without it.
A good competition, this, with for once unanimous approval of the clue-word. The fact that it can be a verb as well as a noun gave added flexibility to an already friendly word. (One regular, who surfs the Internet, discovered that Poniard is also a computer services company in Estonia!) Macbeth inevitably loomed large, as did anagrams involving PROD. I was most impressed by Mr Dearden’s composite anagram. Even though it pushes this clue form to its limits by using 14 extra letters, its use of the verbatim quote from ‘the Scottish play’ along with ‘probe’ and ‘thane’ was to me brilliantly irresistible, but he was pressed close by some really excellent clues. Congratulations to all those quoted and commiserations to the ‘nearly-made-its’. One of these, involving a bunged-up drain, included ‘plunger’ as the definition word, which I decided sadly was just unacceptable given the range of meanings shown for ‘plunger’ in Chambers.
No time for more this month, except for two apologies. First to Mr P. F. Henderson, whose VHC clue to OXFORD was unaccountably omitted from last month’s slip. It was: ‘Centre of religious movement supporting following of Christ? Good’ (o’ X for D).
Second, I was rightly taken to task by several medical men (whose profession is well represented in the ranks of AZ solvers) for failing to distinguish rickets from Ricketts in my recent clue to the splendid word TSUTSUGAMUSHI. Rickettsial diseases, of which this is one, are (as I’d have seen if I’d taken the trouble to check) nothing to do with rickets and everything to do with the work of the American pathologist Howard Taylor Ricketts. Typhus and similar diseases are rickettsial, it seems. Sorry.