XIMENES CROSSWORD No. 267
1. E. J. Rackham: Would Mr. Butler agree that extra determination must produce it, if destruction is to be avoided? (ex(tra de)termination, & lit.; ref. Rab B., Chancellor).
2. D. P. M. Michael: Mystery of the Headless Detective—Holmes would spot it immediately ((Les)trade; H.’s skill in spotting a person’s trade).
3. R. W. Hawes: Holding several tricks, I’m calling; some firm bidding may secure this contract (3 mngs.; tricks of the trade).
B. D. Corbett: Deal or ply board of chief interest to cabinet-makers (3 defs.; Board of Trade).
F. E. Dixon: One of the winds, and one way of raising it (2 mngs.; trade w., raise the w. = raise funds).
Surg Lt A. J. Entwistle: Traffic coming to a light at red is also involved in extra delay (anag., hidden; light = giddy).
J. B. Filburn: Exchange and Mart—Traditional English miniatures. Apply now—only five left—advert (trad. + E., anag. less V, 2 defs.).
S. Goldie: Traffic halting at red—change gear (anag. (halt2), 2 defs.).
Mrs M. H. Gray: If I was stuck in this traffic, there would be some swearing (t(I)rade).
T. J. Guffick: It’s a singularly hard blow for men in the same job to be rated differently (anag., 2 defs.; trade wind).
J. G. Hull: Sort of Union that betrays itself in those extra demands (hidden & lit.; T. Union).
F. J. Irons: I’ll take no part in the slanging match: craft is needed (tirade less I).
Sir P. Laird: If I got into this business, there would be some strong language (t(I)rade).
G. G. Lawrance: Association with this business would turn a Unionist into a Labour supporter (i.e. T. Unionist).
F. E. Newlove: Traditional English custom (selon Napoléon?) (trad. + E; selon = according to (Fr.); “Nation of shop keepers”).
W. Rennie: Medicine men like Guinness and Worthington! (2 defs.; Trade = people engaged in the liquor trade).
A. Robins: If I were in this business, you’d have a special issue of cross words! (t(I)rade).
F. L. Smith: Before this deal the bears join for protection against a sudden fall ((balus)trade).
E. B. Stevens: You could call the bizarre art of Picasso’s rubbish (anag. + de (Sp.); trade = rubbish (dialect)).
Miss D. W. Taylor: Truck for goods traffic (2 mngs; truck2).
T. G. Wellman: Traffic light at red means a deal of extra delay (anag., hidden; light = giddy).
G. H. Willett: Mystery count unscrupulously buying and selling. Exchange to take steps (5 mngs.; mystery2).
C. E. Williams: Traffic light at red (anag.).
R. Woodhouse: I dropped off during the sermon. Is that your business? (tirade less I).
E. S. Ainley, F. D. H. Atkinson, Lt Col P. S. Baines, J. W. Bates, Miss M. Behrendt, T. E. Bell, A. F. Brazier, C. M. Brown, A. Campbell, J. Campion, D. L. L. Clarke, R. M. S. Cork, Mrs C. Crawford, Cdr H. H. L. Dickson, W. J. Duffin, Mrs D. M. D’Eath, T. H. East, Jill E. Fisher, Mrs N. Fisher, Mrs D. Fuller, A. B. Gardner, C. C. M. Giffin, R. McD. Graham, S. B. Green, C. R. Haigh, F. H. W. Hawes, D. E. Hodgson, F. G. Illingworth, J. W. Jenkins, L. Johnson, J. Hardie Keir, Lt Martin, A. D. Mitchner, A. Morris, C. J. Morse, G. Perry, R. Postill, C. Rosebourne, S. Salt, T. E. Sanders, A. J. C. Saunders, Mrs A. L. Stevenson, J. A. L. Sturrock, J. B. Sykes, H. G. Tattersall, J. Thompson, H. L. Tinkler, C. T. Tulloch, Capt C. Tyers, Lt Col C. E. White, S. E. Wilson, M. Winterbottom, A. J. Young.
COMMENTS—An easier puzzle, evidently: 488 entries, 432 correct—easily the most since the change of dictionaries. Two excellent clues—against such strong opposition—had to be runners-up, to my regret, because they were only appropriate to an “across” word. “Turpin struck out East of the capital and rode up North, meaning business.” (T-rade). “East” would have to be “South” for a “down” word, alas! “This wind makes the arrow point to the West.” (dart rev., E., & lit.). Similarly here “West” would become “North,” ruining the “& lit.” Otherwise I like both of these very much; the second especially would have threatened the prizewinners.
I am sometimes asked what I mean by “a clue to a clue,” a designation I use to describe a kind of clue which I regard as unsound. A perfect example is given by those who defined “trade” as “Iris’s follower,” referring to the dictum “Trade follows the flag.” A flag is an iris, but not in the right sense: it is definitely untrue to say that trade follows the iris. The solver has first to solve the equation “iris = flag”: hence the expression “a clue to a clue.” I dislike it because it is an untrue statement: we must say what we mean.
For the sake of very many new competitors, I must again repeat that “I am” or “I do” won’t do when I = the letter I. The letter I “is” or “does.” “Me” for the letter I is even worse. I know these practices are common in crosswords, but they can so easily be avoided that I refuse to admit them. Several of the H.C.s exemplify this (the “tirade” ones). Incidentally another form of unsoundness also cropped up here: if you substitute “the” for “this” in Mrs Gray’s clue, for instance, as several competitors did, the result is a clue to “tirade,” not to “trade.” This is worth studying, though it is not such a heinous fault as the “I am” one.