◀  No. 17667 May 2006 Clue list No. 1775  ▶



1.  J. R. Tozer: Driving off in F1 race inept Ferrari stalls in the pit (anag. less in FI, race vt; ref. Formula One).

2.  A. J. Wardrop: Lines go wrong and echo – something one playing to the gallery forgets? (part err E).

3.  Dr S. J. Shaw: Repertory theatres have ground storey – the —— (comp. anag. & lit.).


D. Appleton: Piece of theatre needs direction before Romeo enters (part + R in ere).

D. & N. Aspland: Rose displays (among other things) pert rear to doctor (anag.; ref. ‘Doctor Who’).

M. Barley: What actor performs before, when playing to an audience? (part + ‘ere’, & lit.).

M. Bath: Maybe Duchess’s bottom is pert rear after surgery (anag.; ref. D. Theatre, London).

C. J. Brougham: Area with earth to render bloomers in? (err in part E, & lit.).

C. A. Clarke: Whittle about Terry not quite 100%, the basis of blooming display at Chelsea? (Terr(y) in pare; ref. football, John T. and C. flower show).

N. Connaughton: For doing one irregularly, pro gardener cops it (comp. anag. & lit.).

D. V. Harry: Conventional bedding? Tree often overlooked it (2 mngs.; ref. actor Sir Beerbohm T., father of 6 illegitimate children).

M. Hodgkin: Rep theatre cast right for the playhouse’s lowest level (anag. with r for the).

E. C. Lance: Distinctive feature of palace garden party curtailed – the Queen’s beside herself, deranged! (part(y) + ER + ER (rev.)).

C. Loving: Misdirected prat fall before end of farce – ending up here? (anag. + err + e).

W. F. Main: With music, say, for one, perhaps Boulez can be seen here (Pierre with art for I; ref. composer).

D. F. Manley: Spouse lacking passion finally about to make arrangement with separate beds (part(n)er + re).

T. J. Moorey: The Prince of Wales’s lowest point? Order given to a flower-bed! (2 mngs.; ref. PoW Theatre, P. Charles’s talking to plants).

R. S. Morse: Some sin by Eve? First couple must quit garden (part err (Ev)e).

F. R. Palmer: Professional skill shown in a display of borders of rare arrangement of flower beds (art in per r(ar)e).

D. R. Robinson: A Prêtre ‘Fledermaus’ badly done could make us feel mad here (comp. anag. & lit.; ref. Georges P., opera conductor).

R. C. Teuton: Are Pinter plays absorbing some regulars in ——? (comp. anag. incl. r, & lit.).

Ms S. Wallace: Bedding arrangement? Alas, Prescott erred badly – clot assed about, sacked! (anag. less anag.; ref. John P.’s infidelity).


T. Anderson, F. Anstis, W. G. Arnott, D. Arthur, J. Baines, J. G. Booth, T. C. Borland, C. Boyd, Rev Canon C. M. Broun, E. J. Burge, Dr J. Burscough, B. Burton, R. M. S. Cork, K. W. Crawford, E. Cross, D. J. Dare-Plumpton, R. Dean, N. C. Dexter, V. Dixon, T. J. Donnelly, A. J. Dorn, W. Drever, C. M. Edmunds, Dr I. S. Fletcher, P. A. I. George, N. C. Goddard, M. Goodliffe, B. Grabowski, R. R. Greenfield, J. Grimes, J. P. Guiver, G. Hearfield, P. F. Henderson, R. Hesketh, R. J. Hooper, W. Jackson, Mrs S. D. Johnson, Mrs S. G. Johnson, G. Johnstone, J. P. Lester, L. Lisser, P. R. Lloyd, P. Long, M. A. Macdonald-Cooper, N. MacSweeney, P. W. Marlow, J. B. Marshall, L. Marzillier, J. R. C. Michie, C. G. Millin, M. Moran, C. J. Morse, W. Murphy, R. A. Norton, C. Ogilvie, D. J. R. Ogilvie, R. J. Palmer, D. Parfitt, A. Plumb, D. Price Jones, W. Ransome, M. Sanderson, D. J. Short, D. A. Simmons, P. L. Stone, K. Thomas, D. H. Tompsett, Dr M. C. Whelan, Ms B. J. Widger, D. C. Williamson, J. S. Witte, Dr E. Young.

217 entries, no mistakes (barring a couple of uncompleted grids — do check your entry before you send it off). Favourite clue: ‘With it having flown away, tef lay in ruins?’ for WHEAT FLY, with 26 receiving at least one mention. No special comments about the puzzle this month, beyond the usual conflicting remarks along the lines of ‘rather more/less difficult than normal’, and one or two complimentary references to the 12-letter answers framing the grid.
Dictionaries are a little vague about what exactly constitutes a parterre, both in its horticultural and in its theatrical meaning. I was especially grateful to Mr Tompsett for enclosing with his entry various photocopied pages about Sir John Vanbrugh, who had interests in both theatre and architecture: ‘…in his mid-thirties, Vanbrugh’s interest had moved away from the stage to architecture. Quite why or how this happened is unknown, and it certainly mystified and amused many at the time [late 17th century].’ In The Theory and Practice of Gardening, translated from the French by John James of Greenwich and published in England in 1712, we read that ‘There are divers Sorts of Parterres, which may be reduced to these Four that follow; namely, Parterres of Embroidery, Parterres of Compartiment, Parterres after the English Manner, and Parterres of Cut-Work. There are also Parterres of Water, but they are quite out of Use [‘water-features’ of the day, might one suppose?].’ These are all defined at length, which I won’t go into. There also seems to be uncertainty whether theatrical parterres can be positioned towards the front and rear of the ground floor in theatres, though to me the pit is unquestionably at the front, nearest the stage.
One clue came close to preferment, but for a fatal flaw: ‘Uncomfortable front bench? Member sinned (deputy leader found wanting)’. Leaving aside the slightly questionable definition, I cannot accept ‘deputy leader’ to indicate ‘d’. There is no grammatical or semantic justification for this: ‘deputy leader’ doesn’t mean ‘leader of (the word) deputy’. Such usage is admittedly not uncommon in some crosswords, but I don’t recognize its validity.
Some of you may have heard the sad news that Eric Chalkley died recently. A late convert to cryptic crosswords, he was a devout Ximenean, who set puzzles for various papers under the pseudonym Apex in recognition of the fact that X was his model. His greatest pleasure was setting puzzles for his friends, often building their names into the diagram and/or clues, and he will be remembered especially for his Christmas competitions, circulated privately to a chosen few, a tradition now continued in his memory by Paul Henderson (Phi). Eric was an engaging and modest man, a carpenter by trade, who only stopped competing in the Azed competitions when forced to do so by age and failing eyesight. Tim Moorey has written a brief account of his cremation service, which may be found on the website crosswordcentre@yahoogroups.com.


The Azed Cup

Dr S. J. Shaw wins First Prize in competition 2543.


Skins of Argentine ruminant, processed with currying after being tanned initially

This year’s honours table

The next Azed competition puzzle will be on Sunday 2nd May

 NEW   AZED  No. 2,549  18th Apr

All online Azed puzzles

Dr Watson reviews Azed 2547

From the archive

Tragic scandals left axed King Agamemnon’s head: I saw it coming (9)

First prize winner by D. Ashcroft in competition 1220