◀  No. 249 Clue list 27 Sep 1953 Slip image No. 253  ▶



1.  Cdr H. H. L. Dickson: All over the place, though not like a doctor doing the rounds (tho’ in unmedical, & lit.).

2.  D. P. M. Michael: Making the lucid moan! (anag. & lit.).

3.  A. Rivlin: On detail, much at fault (anag. & lit.).


C. Allen Baker: Much led into a muddle (anag. & lit.).

M. L. Booker: Munich led to a realignment here regardless of law and order (anag.; ref. M. Agreement, 1939).

R. M. S. Cork: Having no plan of the mould, I can do nothing but redesign it (anag.).

Mrs W. Fearon: Like the Foolish Virgins—lacking care and oil—unmatched confusion! (anag.; ref. Matt. 25:1-13).

Mrs N. Fisher: Do lunch with me at one. We’ll make it quite informal (anag. incl. I; one = I).

Rev B. Foley: Haphazard setting of clue! Oh, damn it! (anag.).

Maj A. H. Giles: I am unclothed—highly improper! It should certainly be against all rules (anag.).

R. M. Grace: No detail—much confused (anag. & lit.).

Miss V. Grant: I can mould the jigsaw pieces together, with no system whatsoever (anag.).

C. R. Haigh: Being untidy about the house culminated in confusion (ho in anag. of culminated).

T. Heaney: No detail! Much confusion! Unsystematic! (anag.).

C. J. Morse: Irregular and varying much on detail (anag.).

Mrs M. G. Porter: Haphazard variety of clue: oh, damn it! (anag.).

J. E. Povey: Planless muddle led to a Munich (anag.; ref. M. Agreement, 1939).

E. J. Rackham: I am unclothed, running amok, and liable to a charge of disorderly conduct! (anag.).

D. Russom: From jumbled letters I can mould the key-word, without any system (anag.; ref. Playfair).

T. E. Sanders: Cloud in the morning with winds irregular (anag. incl. a.m.).

W. I. D. Scott: I am unclothed, mad, but not as Hamlet (anag.; ref. Hamlet II.2, “madness, yet there is method in’t”).

R. E. Stumbles: I am unclothed, drunk and disorderly (anag.).

J. Thompson: You can have the clue! I’m hot and bothered—inclined to leave things to chance (anag.).

D. H. Tompsett: Careless on much detail (anag. & lit.).

J. F. N. Wedge: The man I could vivisect for being very unjustly disposed! (anag.; ‘vivisector’ encoded solution in puzzle).

A. H. Wright: An old tie, much creased and lacking pattern (anag.).

Flt Lt N. D. Young: Not what the doctor ordered—swallowing a hot pickle! It’s bad for the system! (anag. in unmedical).


E. S. Ainley, Miss H. M. Barkas, A. J. Barnard, H. Bernard, J. A. Blair, J. C. R. Clapham, J. Coleby, F. L. Constable, D. A. Dodds, W. J. Duffin, L. E. Eyres, Dr J. N. Fell, J. A. Fincken, J. A. Flood, Rev D. Ford, E. M. Fowler, Dr H. D. Friedberg, A. B. Gardner, C. E. Gates, E. Gomersall, C. P. Grant, S. B. Green, W. E. Green, H. Heath, P. T. Heath, E. L. Hillman, H. T. E. Hone, Miss B. J. Hutt, B. J. Iliffe, F. G. Illingworth, D. E. G. Irvine, Mrs L. Jarman, G. G. Lawrance, B. M. Legg, R. H. Lemon, Dr W. A. Maclure, A. W. Maddocks, T. W. Melluish, G. M. Mercer, P. H. Morgan, R. J. Munnings, I. Munro, F. E. Newlove, D. A. Nicholls, F. R. Palmer, R. Postill, E. R. Prentice, K. Reed, J. Riley, H. Rotter, Mrs E. M. Simmonds, P. P. Simpson, W. K. M. Slimmings, 2 Lt J. P. Smith, O. Carlton Smith, J. A. Stafford, F. B. Stubbs, Miss D. W. Taylor, P. H. Taylor, H. S. Tribe, M. A. Vernon, B. J. Wain, J. B. Welman, M. Winterbottom, L. C. Wright, J. S. Young.

COMMENTS—402 Correct and very few mistakes. Many competitors got the key-word from REPULPITED alone, VIVISECTOR being none too easy to solve from scratch. I had this possibility in mind when writing the clues: if the straight clues are hard, and the “code” clues easy, readily yielding a large number of equations, the whole thing is far too like a “Plain.” I therefore made the straight clues easier than usual and the “code” clues fair (I hope) but not particularly easy, with the idea of making the “Playfair” part the bigger part of the problem rather than an easy appendage. This is, I am sure, the right policy, for we don’t have “Playfairs” very often; when we do, the “Playfair” fans, who are evidently growing in number, should have their fill. Many thanks for appreciative comments. Mr. Mercer tells me that he had over 300 applications: his duplicating machine gave trouble, and he asks me to apologise to some applicants for the somewhat smudgy copies they received. He is, I think, a great benefactor to the uninitiated.
There were few dull clues this time, the word offering a great of variety of profitable anagrams: my task of choosing was not easy. But I have noticed before that an adjective often leads to loose or unsound definitions, and this one was no exception. I will quote the definition parts of five clues, taken at random from those rejected on this ground:—“Lack of organisation will be evident.”—“That shows poor organisation.”—“Shows a lack of system.”—“One is left with a picture of pottering incompetence.”—“I haven’t got a programme.” None of these can possibly define an adjective. I should think there must have been fifty or sixty others like this. Newcomers are very inclined to fail to indicate their anagrams properly by sound wording, and also to introduce irrelevant words into their clues to help the misleading sense. But, in spite of these strictures, the general standard of soundness continues, I think, to rise.

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