< Slip No. 753 View the clue list Slip No. 762 >



1.  C. G. Millin: A race on the M1 is ridiculous – one is sure to get booked (hooked; anag.).

2.  A. H. Jones: What you want is a hunky type, i.e. Rent-a-Macho’s special (junky; anag.).

3.  V. G. Henderson: Doctor come into Hare: ‘I must have another stiff’ (sniff; anag.; ref. Burke and H.).


W. Anderson: Queer romance I hate; I revel in the other (ether; anag.).

E. J. Burge: I take skiff for a trip, working oar in the Cam with energy (sniff; anag. incl. E).

Dr J. Burscough: Gas field might yield carbon monoxide, air – and methane (fiend; anag. incl. CO).

M. Coates: The nice aroma in a stew somebody cooked on gas (hooked; anag.).

D. A. Crossland: A creation with hem tailor-made for one who’s into drag (drug; anag.).

N. C. Dexter: Junks trafficking in more China tea (junky; anag.).

S. Gaskell: Solvents wreak havoc with mohair and acetone, giving off oxygen (freak; anag. less O).

R. R. Greenfield: A persistent inspirer of hope in America on the run (dope; anag.).

B. Greer: A sort of sound broadcast came on the air (hound; anag.; hound = addict).

J. F. Grimshaw: First Among Equals, a certain novel by one that’s a Conservative (one whom hooker could describe!) (hooked; E the roman I a C.; ref. Jeffrey Archer, novel and scandal).

G. Johnstone: Trifle with cream on I hate: the other I’m mad about (ether; anag.).

A. Lawrie: One who’s looked at a nicer home moves (hooked; anag.).

C. W. Laxton: He’s hooked on a gay romance – I hate being involved in it (gas; anag.).

D. F. Manley: Being desperate for stiffs could activate Hare in company with mate (sniffs; anag. incl. co.; ref. Burke and H.).

H. W. Massingham: I need certain fuses, the type I found in every short (fumes; the roman I in eac(h)).

T. J. Moorey: Guy ruined by a gal? I’m at one with Archer exercising right to resign (gas; anag. less r; ref. Jeffrey A.).

C. J. Morse: This one’s badly cooked – the nice aroma disguises it (hooked; anag.).

A. J. Redstone: A fiery, volatile class tyrannizes me: I am no teacher, unfortunately (glass; anag.).

L. G. D. Sanders: One who’s cooked the macaroni badly after a bit of effort (hooked; e + anag.).

T. E. Sanders: I can’t resist indulging in a sensational number in sixes – one hit camera accidentally (fixes; anag.; numb-er).

D. P. Shenkin: Latin in intricate act, i.e. he has lover (gas; Roman in anag.).

D. M. Stanford: A he-man erotic? Possibly for one into gay love (gas; anag.).

J. F. N. Wedge: Broken romance – I hate other lover (ether; anag.).

W. Woodruff: He inspires valour – a brave man seen inside at cinema in disguise (vapour; hero in anag.).

Dr E. Young: One inspired pope put the State within the City environs! (dope; the Romania in EC; London postcode).


D. W. Arthur, F. D. H. Atkinson, E. A. Beaulah, Mrs A. R. Bradford, J. Campbell, B. E. Chamberlain, C. A. Clarke, W. H. C. Cobb, A. J. Crow, J. Dromey, M. Earle, Dr I. S. Fletcher, H. Freeman, N. C. Goddard, S. Goldie, T. Green, D. V. Harry, P. F. Henderson, A. W. Hill, R. J. Hooper, E. M. Hornby, J. I. & B. C. James, N. Kemmer, R. E. Kimmons, F. P. N. Lake, A. Logan, M. A. Macdonald-Cooper, A. N. Macdougall, L. K. Maltby, L. May, W. L. Miron, R. S. Morse, A. J. Odber, F. R. Palmer, D. Price Jones, D. Riley, A. Rivlin, H. R. Sanders, C. I. Semeonoff, W. K. M. Slimmings, Mrs I. G. Smith, P. D. Stonier, F. B. Stubbs, A. J. Wardrop, Mrs M. P. Webber, Mrs B. Wharf, J. R. Widdowson.

About 260 entries, with a few mistakes, mostly the result of failure to count the misprints. The fact that in the finished puzzle, counting the clue-word as a misprinted clue, half the across and half the down clues will he seen to have misprints in them, and likewise half the across and half the down answers, should ensure a unique solution. Perhaps one or two were inadvertently thrown by the fact that there were only 16 down words in the diagram instead of the more normal 18. ‘Misprints’ as a type of puzzle tends to be more difficult than average – among other things the setter is helping himself to a number of extra unches – but it was a disappointingly low entry. Perhaps I’m just getting harder – many commented that they’d found it tough going.
A couple of queries need answering. I was asked if the misprint in a clue could be a punctuation sign instead of a letter (e.g. U-turn for Upturn, Tim’s for Times, Bar? for Bare). I’m not keen on this and could imagine it getting out of hand. The preamble is explicit about misprints being ‘of one letter’ and I interpret that as one letter being replaced by another (and not a lower-case one by a capital, or vice versa, either). Then there’s the question that has come up before about whether an ‘& lit.’ Misprints clue is acceptable, the whole thing working cryptically but containing a misprint when read as a definition. I can’t on the face of it see anything against this though I believe X found it unacceptable for some reason. Possibly he felt that it overcomplicated a device that is already quite tricky for the solver – a charge I could make against the only ‘& lit.’ clue submitted this month. The sort of misprints clue that definitely won’t work is the one in which the misprinted word reads equally well as a definition of the required answer before and after the change – where either, in other words, could do as a normal clue to the answer.
ETHEROMANIAC certainly offered a huge range of possibilities. It is a gift to the anagrammatist (just look at all those anags. above!) and would not have been out of place in a P.D. puzzle either. It’s an odd word for Chambers to have included (or not subsequently to have omitted) since it only appears in the original supplement to the O.E.D., with three quotes, between 1889 and 1909 (and two of those for ETHEROMANIA). Dr Young, a consultant anaesthetist, comments interestingly that ether was not used in anaesthesia before 1846 but before then had been popular as an intoxicant at parties known as ‘Ether frolics.’ Solvent abuse is clearly not just a modern phenomenon.


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