< Slip No. 1546 View the clue list Slip No. 1554 >



1.  R. Phillips: So trio member might play without book (anag. less b, & lit.).

2.  N. G. Shippobotham: Poem reciter, me; I recollect piece thus (comp. anag. & lit.).

3.  D. F. Manley: ‘More times more’ gets tricky – with some possibly dropping out as tables are recited? (anag. less anag.).


M. Barley: Exam-notes should be known thus, or merit more revising (anag.).

E. A. Beaulah: Pat Rafter’s first after measure involving pollsters (MORI in mete + R; ref. Australian tennis star).

Mrs F. A. Blanchard: How actor repeats-lines when playing part of Edmund Mortimer (anag. incl E; ref. ‘Henry IV, Pt I’).

K. A. Brough: Pat Rafter, after bowing out, has more time to play around (R(after) in anag.; ref. tennis).

C. J. Brougham: Poll dons item made to measure as parrot-fashion! (MORI in meter; ref. polling organisation).

Dr J. Burscough: Iodine, in chronic illness, treated tremor by heart? (I in ME + anag.).

B. Costin: Faulty ROM item starts to erase results from memory (anag. + e, r).

N. C. Dexter: By heart being exercised more I’m not half fitter! (anag. + (fit)ter).

W. P. M. Field: How actor cons his part mixing mime with rote? Right! (anag. + r).

H. Freeman: Tim: Me or Greg, no good at all, sick as a parrot (anag. less g twice; ref. T. Henman, G. Rusedski, tennis).

R. J. Hooper: How maestro could conduct item Rorem composed (anag.; ref. Ned R., US composer).

W. F. Main: How one might learn what could become of mitre and Rome after Reformation (anag.).

P. McKenna: More time spent close to primer is how grammar should be learnt! (anag. + r).

C. J. Morse: Without book, brief summary by author lacks a bit of weight (memo (w)riter).

W. Murphy: How actors play doctor in quality hospital drama? (MO in merit + ER; ref. TV series).

F. R. Palmer: In this way learner’ll be content in remembering less than half? Quite the reverse! (tiro in remem(bering) (all rev.)).

D. R. Robinson: For a broadcast to be this one needs to remember it, love (comp. anag. incl. 0, & lit.).

D. J. Short: How to make a note (not with pen) (memo + (w)riter, & lit.).

J. R. Tozer: Pat married local girl in Eire short time after break-up (m + mor in anag. incl. t).

A. P. Vick: Distraught Mortimer pens ‘Rumpole’s Last…’ without notes? (e in anag.; ref. John M., ‘R.’s Last Case’).


D. Appleton, D. Ashcroft, J. R. Beresford, Mrs A. Boyes, B. Burton, Mrs M. J. Cansfield, P. Cargill, M. Casserley, C. A. Clarke, E. A. Clarke, M. Coates, E. Cross, C. Daffern, M. D. Damesick, L. J. Davenport, R. Dean, V. Dixon, W. J. Duffin, C. M. Edmunds, R. Fishleigh, A. G. Fleming, E. G. Fletcher, Mrs C. George, N. C. Goddard, C. Goldsmith, R. Grafen, G. I. L. Grafton, R. Griffin, J. F. Grimshaw, C. R. Gumbrell, Ms D. Harwood, R. Hesketh, M. Hodgkin, J. G. Hull, T. Jacobs, Mrs D. B. Jenkinson, Mrs S. D. Johnson, G. Johnstone, A. Jones, M. Jones, F. P. N. Lake, J. C. Leyland, R. K. Lumsdon, D. W. Mackie, J. R. C. Michie, C. G. Millin, S. Newbery, T. D. Nicholl, D. Price Jones, H. L. Rhodes, D. Roseveare, H. R. Sanders, M. Sanderson, Miss A. E. Stoddart, K. Thomas, D. H. Tompsett, L. Ward, A. J. Wardrop, M. J. E. Wareham, R. J. Whale, Dr M. C. Whelan, D. C. Williamson, Dr E. Young.

257 entries, and no mistakes that I spotted. This was the fourth ‘Jigsaw’ puzzle I’ve given you, and the second time it’s been a competition puzzle. The first was No. 1,316 in August 1997. I borrowed the idea (with due acknowledgement) from Araucaria who uses it regularly in the monthly crossword magazine 1 Across (published from The Old Chapel, Middleton Tyas, Richmond, North Yorkshire DL10 6PP, for those interested in subscribing). You clearly found the special challenge enjoyable, and perhaps not as difficult as it seemed at the outset. I think I did try to make the clues a trifle easier than usual, but at the same time I deliberately designed a grid with six answers each of six different word-lengths and (naughtily) put OIDIA at 1 Across so that the first four down answers all began with vowels. No one was fooled for long. The only clue that caused serious trouble was the one to SHIRT (‘Garment: I’ll go for ruche in it’), I don’t quite know why. It’s not the best clue I’ve ever written, but not the worst either, the explanation being SHIR for I in IT, One or two failed to spot the reference to Milton O(bote), Idi A(min)’s predecessor as Ugandan head of state, in the OIDIA clue, but this clue (and that to SHIRT) got chosen by some as their favourite, so they can’t have been that obscure. The SERPULA, ANANIAS and QUASH clues were also popular.
It’s some time since I last gave you an adverb to clue (was DINGLE-DANGLE the last?) and there was some huffing and puffing about the extra difficulty they pose in cluing. That said, most clearly had made the extra effort, and there were some nice ideas on display, those quoted above being well up to scratch. Straight anagrams tended to be a little humdrum without that little bit of extra wordplay I’m always going on about (such as Mr Main’s ‘Reformation’ and Mr Costin’s misleading reference to computer memory). I also liked Mr Brougham’s fanciful notion of a sort of psittacine catwalk! These nice touches make all the difference. My apologies to Mr P. B. G. Williams, whose surname came out as Whelan among the HCs last month, after the two other (genuine) Whelans, and my thanks to him for pointing out the error in a very courteous letter.
Next month’s competition will again be a special, for a reason that will become apparent. I hope you all enjoy it. The same reason explains my appearance on the Radio 4 Midweek programme with Libby Purves on 27 February (if you will forgive this immodest bit of self-publicity).


The Azed Cup

C. M. Edmunds wins First Prize in competition 2512.


Signal need of a nap – crack Ascot tip that doesn’t finish last in race

This year’s honours table

The next Azed competition puzzle will be on Sunday 4th October

Latest  AZED  No. 2,519  20th Sep

All online Azed puzzles

Dr Watson reviews Azed 2517

From the archive

A tense drop from parapet possibly with line (6)

Second prize winner by N. C. Dexter in competition 1502