◀  No. 194 Clue list 15 Jun 1952 Slip image No. 196  ▶



1.  Cdr H. H. L. Dickson (Fareham): By degrees the feller gets us down (walla, BAs, & lit.).

2.  Rev E. B. Peel (Fleetwood): Bombay agent wants Paris stockings—they’ve a nice shade for S.A. (walla, bas (Fr.)).

3.  C. J. Lowe (Manchester): Indian workers have absorbed a certain degree of learning: they put the South Americans in the shade! (BA in wallas).


T. E. Bell (Gainsborough): To get these, British America requires all-round fellers. Very high standards essential (B, A in wallas; standard = standing growth).

W. C. Cartner (Middlesbrough): Palisade down at Devil’s Island? Build it up with these! (wall, à bas, & lit.; D.I. in French Guiana).

F. A. Clark (Croydon): Fan-palms sway from right to left: They’re trees with a Red streak, you see (sabal + law (all rev.); sway (n) = rule [see comments]).

C. E. Gates (Kettering): We have an agent down in Cayenne, and branches all over the Guianas (walla + bas (Fr.)).

S. Goldie (S. Shields): Indian feller, him clever, has degrees: him go chop-chop with us in Guiana (walla BAs).

A. R. M. Hooper (SW10): They’ve got branches in Guiana and agents around British America (B, A in wallas).

F. G. Illingworth (Worcester): They will give Lana Turner tough parts! (cryptic def.; lana = tough wood of the Guiana tree; turner = wood turner; ref. film actress [see comments]).

L. W. Jenkinson (Stoke-on-Trent): They are liable to kill you if they fall on you—a vice that is found in Rugby tourists (a for i.e. in Wallabies; vice3).

G. G. Lawrance (Harrow): We could provide lining for camel hair jackets, or at least a pair of trunks! (wall, abas; wall = lining of organ [see comments]).

R. Postill (Jersey): It’s possible—if unusual—to get us down by letting a feller have one short bash! (walla, bas(h)).

E. R. Prentice (Clifton): Fellow bathes without the trunks—and leaves! (walla ba(the)s [see comments]).

Mrs E. M. Simmonds (Cookham Dean): We have reddish colouring and abound in S.A.—just what all the nice girls love in fellows (AB in wallas; “all the nice girls love a sailor”).

T. G. Wellman (Poole): Fence down in Cayenne! Get trees from local Forest (wall, à bas (Fr.)).


C. Allen Baker, Miss M. Behrendt, Rev H.D. Owen Brown, B. G. H. Clegg, F. E. Dixon, W. M. Easther, Mrs E. M. Fearon, Mrs N. Fisher, S. B. Green, Mrs L. Jarman [see comments], H. W. Jenkins [see comments], C. Koop, J. W. Lawton, J. P. Lloyd, T. W. Melluish, C. J. Morse, E. G. Phillips, C. P. Rea, Miss D. W. Taylor [see comments], J. Thompson, W. E. Tucker, J. Vallely, G. H. Willet [see comments].

COMMENTS—187 correct and many disasters caused by TALPA. Solvers evidently thought “a plot” reversed must be right and didn’t verify the existence of “tolpa.” It was perhaps natural not to think of “plat” = “a bit of ground ,” and I sympathise: very often it is safe enough to trust the subsidiary clue alone for an unfamiliar word, but it is better to verify when an unchecked letter offers more than one possibility. There were other mistakes, though no other common ones, in what I thought was a difficult puzzle with a tough N.W. corner: but there were those who said it was easier than No. 194, which I thought was a rather easy one, and the entries didn’t differ much in numbers.
The word set, being, for once, an unfamiliar technical name, clearly required a fairly easy and definitive clue and certainly one that indicates that a plural word is wanted. Many competitors were eliminated for not complying with either or both of these requirements, so the lists are short. There were some technically excellent clues among those regretfully ruled out: here is one which was too hard to be more than a runner-up:—“They will give Lana Turner tough parts!” “Lana” is the tough wood of the Guiana tree, a “turner” works with this, and L. T. is, I believe, a film actress: the whole thing is beautifully neat, but would it have helped the solver? Where would he begin to get anything out of it? There must be useful subsidiary help in a clue to an unusual word: straight clues are out. I don’t often set these words for the competition, but I think solvers should be given all sorts at one time or another.
P.S. Further reflection suggests that my TALPA clue is not entirely innocent of the very crime I have been stigmatising! “Plat” isn’t any too helpful! No, I think I’m guilty: I might plead that I did not know that “talpa” was a mole and not that “wallaba” was a tree: this is genuinely true, but I doubt if it’s cogent! . . .
(Later).—I’ve looked again through the runners-up and decided, in fairness, to promote four of them to H.C.s, the best of those rejected as too difficult: they are the one quoted above by F. G. Illingworth (Worcester) and:—F. A. Clark (Croydon): Fan-palms sway from right to left: They’re trees with a Red streak, you see (sabal-law). G. G. Lawrence (Harrow): We could provide lining for camel hair jackets, or at least a pair of trunks! (wall-abas). E. R. Prentice (Clifton): Fellow bathes without the trunks—and leaves! (ba-the-s). Additional runners-up:—Mrs L. Jarman, H.W. Jenkins, Miss D.W. Taylor, G. H. Willet. There! Honour is satisfied—will there still be a storm? I wonder!


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