◀  No. 24693 Nov 2019 Clue list No. 2477  ▶



1.  J. R. Tozer: Exchanges per litany? (anag. & lit.; i.e. call-and-response).

2.  S. Randall: Relationship may be snowballing when wife’s away ((w)inter play).

3.  A. J. Wardrop: Painterly working, something seen in chiaroscuro? (anag.).


M. Barley: Cross tryline with a couple of passes, displaying such an exchange (anag. incl. pa).

T. C. Borland: Crossing plenty, a grid’s contents show this (anag. incl. ri; ref. crosswords).

A. Brash: What’ll enhance jam? Put in ground pistachio (a dash), then cover (inter p + lay; jam session).

Dr P. Coles: Mutual dealings between worlds though problematic aren’t excluded (interplanetary less anag.).

N. Connaughton (Ireland): Distorted rate plainly unsettling City exchange (anag. less LA).

Ms S. Hart: Play with ‘Yentl’ pair acting together (anag.; ref. Napolin/Singer play).

R. J. Heald: Crossfire perhaps dispels initial quiet in ‘No Man’s Land’? ((P)inter play; ref. 1974 Harold P. play).

M. Hodgkin: The Caretaker perhaps expressing power in effect character’s actions have on each other ((P)inter play).

B. Jones: Connection? Positive this could be Victoria Station? ((P)inter play (1982)).

J. C. Leyland: With alternate parts blending well, many an opera trio demonstrates this (anag. of alternate letters, & lit.).

D. F. Manley: Wife and husband falling out yelp in wrath – resolution needed for ‘give and take’? (anag. less w, h).

T. J. Moorey: Reciprocity’s so lacking in split personality (anag. less so).

S. J. O’Boyle: What might you see in Milan? Intricate passing movements perhaps resulting in penalty I take nervously (Inter play, anag. incl. I r).

A. Plumb: Plant driver provisionally to park truck (inter P lay; truck2).

Dr S. J. Shaw: Foul leads to remote inspection and penalty action between teams (anag. incl. r i; ref. VAR decision).

P. Tharby: Action among conspirators to bury Julius Caesar? (inter play).

J. Vincent & Ms R. Porter: My! Palestrina, then, tortuously could construct anthem’s —— (comp. anag. & lit.; ref. Giovanni da P., composer).

Mrs A. M. Walden: Italian footballers show what teamwork involves (Inter (Milan) play).

L. Ward (USA): Reciprocity certainly loses the merest trace of credibility when it’s contrived to secure power (P in anag. less c).

A. Whittaker: Reciprocal actions e.g. between Mars and Venus entwined aren’t hidden from view (interplanetary less anag.; ref. Greek mythology).


P. B. Alldred, T. Anderson, D. Appleton, D. & N. Aspland, P. Bartlam, J. G. Booth, C. J. Brougham, J. M. Brown, Mrs S. Brown, Dr J. Burscough, M. Calverley, A. G. Chamberlain, M. Coates, V. Dixon (Ireland), J. Doylend, W. Drever, J. Felton, Dr I. S. Fletcher, H. Freeman, G. I. L. Grafton, Ms Y. Grantham, G. Johnstone, M. Lloyd-Jones, M. Lunan, A. MacDougall, I. Mackintosh, A. Macmillan, P. W. Marlow, L. F. Marzillier (USA), P. McKenna, K. Milan, C. G. Millin, T. D. Nicholl, C. Ogilvie, L. Orgee, A. Peacock, M. L. Perkins, M. Price, D. Price Jones, C. Reed, Dr J. B. Reid, A. D. Scott, N. G. Shippobotham, C. Short, I. Simpson, C. M. Steele, P. A. Stephenson, P. L. Stone, K. Thomas, The Rt Revd Dr D. Thomson, A. J. Varney, J. Waterton, R. J. Whale, G. H. Willett.

183 entries, with no mistakes, apart from the duff anagram in my clue to BREASTPIN, for which I apologize profusely, but which introduced me for the first time to ‘gay deceivers’ meaning an old-fashioned padded bra (a curious term). Though less challenging than last month’s Spoonerisms, you still clearly found it a tougher-than-average plain puzzle. The clue that gave most trouble was the one for ADES. I was really quite surprised that so many of you were unfamiliar with Thomas Adès, the British composer (and pianist and conductor) born in 1971. My use of ‘shades’ also puzzled several; I was referring to the souls of the departed (Latin manes) forever wandering around Hades. Favourite clue, of 18 mentioned, was, by a very long way, ‘The core earth’s middle pens? Possibly’ for CENTROSPHERE.
INTERPLAY proved a friendly word to clue (‘almost too good’ was one comment). The three most popular approaches were: the ‘party line’ anagram, references to the football club Inter(nazionale) Milan, and ‘Pinter play’ with disposal of the initial ‘P’. The first of these produced many clues which differed in only minor details and were consequently not distinctive enough to be highly placed. Note, however, the unusually long HC list above, a pointer to the high overall standard of clues submitted.
Sad to report, we have recently lost two outstanding competitors from earlier years, Joyce Cansfield and Frank Palmer. Joyce was also a crossword setter for many years, producing over 1,000 puzzles for The Times and, as Machiavelli, contributing regular crosswords for The Listener. In addition, she was the national Scrabble® champion in 1980 and the first champion of Countdown. She appeared in Ximenes and Azed slips 216 times. Frank was a distinguished and much-published academic in the field of linguistic science, retiring as Emeritus Professor of Linguistics at Reading University. In Ximenes and Azed competitions he gained 29 prizes, 152 VHCs and 211 HCs, a fine record spanning 62 years.
Finally, a special announcement. A lunch to mark Azed No. 2,500 is planned to take place in Wolfson College, Oxford on Saturday 2 May 2020. For full details please send an sae to Richard Heald, 13 Eshton Court, Mapplewell, Barnsley, South Yorkshire S75 5QG, or email heald.richard@googlemail.com. As the details are still being finalized, please allow a month or so for a reply.


The Azed Cup

Dr S. J. Shaw wins First Prize in competition 2603.

TERAS def. PRATT (Wrong Number)

After dismissing jolly, Starmer’s ordered to reveal what could lie behind dreadful Labour experience

This year’s honours table

The next Azed competition puzzle will be on

Latest  AZED  No. 2,704  14th Apr

All online Azed puzzles

Dr Watson reviews Azed 2603

From the archive

Celebrations Antiguan-style, whose origins lie in gospel story a long time back (9, 2 words)

First prize winner by M. Barley in competition 1439