AZED CROSSWORD 2065
1. Mrs A. M. Walden: Article in German media set out what might be bad news for Brussels (der + anag.; Brussels carpet).
2. D. V. Harry: Race on fells? Idea’s abandoned after running five hundred metres (anag. + anag. incl. D; fell4).
3. M. Barley: You might find such munching contents of larder, it’d seem (anag. incl. (l)arde(r), & lit.).
T. Anderson: Nucleus of broadloom armies, dispersed with deet? (d + anag., & lit.).
T. C. Borland: False steed, made with hollow interior, covering attackers (anag. incl. i, r; covering = clothing/carpeting; ref. Trojan horse).
Dr I. S. Fletcher: Dread ’em creeping around woolly site (anag. in anag., & lit.).
R. Gilbert: I had stair carpet messed up – these chaps astir? (comp. anag. & lit.; up = excited).
J. Grimes: English covertly sited armed harbours hide destroyers (E in anag.).
R. J. Heald: Destructive beetles? I erase ’em with DDT sprayed liberally (anag.).
R. J. Hooper: See maid tread clumsily, one spilling champers on carpet etc (anag. less a).
Ms M. Irvine: Household pests upset determined maids – mind out flies! (anag. less anag.).
J. C. Leyland: Basil’s residents maybe see maître d’ angrily belting a little dago (d in anag.; basil2; ref.’Fawlty Towers’).
M. A. Macdonald-Cooper: Turning crimson, I’m seated uncomfortably – these bugs can be bad for piles! (red (rev.) + anag.; bugs = infections).
P. W. Marlow: Faltering European trade is deemed not half a threat to Brussels (anag. incl. E, (dee)med).
K. Milan: They can bring about tread demise (anag. & lit.).
T. J. Moorey: Nasty things swept under the carpet unwisely, police deemed racist caught out (anag. less c; ref. Stephen Lawrence case).
R. J. Palmer: I erase ’em spattering with DDT (anag. & lit.).
A. Plumb: Beetles – models made despite power cut around end of war (r in anag. less P; ref. VW cars).
Dr S. J. Shaw: These coleopterans have varied diet on carpet, meal or seeds (comp. anag. & lit.).
N. G. Shippobotham: See these beetles’ poo scattered around (i.e. carpet’s doomed) (comp. anag. incl. c, & lit.).
P. L. Stone: Ted smiled after dropping left foot and crushing beetles (anag. less l, ft; ref. beetle-crushers).
A. J. Wardrop: Faded, ornate Kidderminster with a hint of mustiness could be meat and drink for these (comp. anag. incl a, m, & lit.).
D. Appleton, D. K. Arnott, D. & N. Aspland, M. Barker, Dr P. M. J. Bennett, J. Biggin, J. G. Booth, G. Borooah (USA), C. J. Brougham, Rev Canon C. M. Broun, Dr J. Burscough, C. J. Butler, D. Carter, Ms U. Carter, C. A. Clarke, M. Coates, T. Crowther, M. Cutter, P. Dendy, V. Dixon (Ireland), W. Drever, A. S. Everest, G. I. L. Grafton, Mrs E. Greenaway, A. H. Harker, P. F. Henderson (New Zealand), R. Hesketh, C. & C. Hinton, G. Johnstone, J. R. H. Jones, J. P. Lester, E. Looby, M. Lunan, D. F. Manley, J. R. C. Michie, C. G. Millin, C. J. Morse, C. Ogilvie, M. Owen, J. & G. S. Parsons, M. L. Perkins, R. Perry, W. Ransome, Mrs L. J. Roberts, A. J. Shields, J. R. Tozer, Ms S. Wallace, L. Ward (USA), R. J. Whale, A. Whittaker, G. H. Willett, C. Williams, E. Wilson, A. J. Young, Dr E. Young, R. Zara.
A more straightforward puzzle than of late: 205 entries and no mistakes that I spotted. Favourite clue, by a very long way, of twelve mentioned, was ‘Type of self-discipline introduced by X, then me, in fine paper’ for CHIYOGAMI. I was, I admit, pretty pleased with it myself, especially as the word looked on the face of it so unpromising. There was some muttering about ‘decoration’ as the definition for GRADINI, and I can’t now recall why I didn’t pluralize it, though it must be said that as both an abstract and a concrete noun the singular form can easily stand for more than one actual decorations. My use of ‘Roman cardinal’ for ‘I’ may have been a bit cheeky, there being more than a few different letters that were used to represent numbers in Latin (not I think including O for zero, though better classicists than I may correct me on this).
I was a bit nervous about giving you DERMESTIDAE. These biological family names can be rather boring to clue. (‘At least it’s not one of those plant groups ending -ACEAE’, as one regular commented.) The shape of the word and its friendly constituent letters persuaded me that it would offer enough potential. And so it proved. More inventive clue writers quickly spotted that it’s one of those terms for which a promising approach is via what these little pests actually do, rather than a straight biological definition. The quoted clues illustrate this clearly, I hope. One neatly brief clue from a regular US-based competitor (‘Germany remediates defective beetles’) nearly made it into the VHCs until I noticed that ‘remediate’ is only given in Chambers as an adjective, and a Shakespearean one at that. Has it acquired a verbal function in modern American English? I simply don’t know, though it’s not in my large Webster’s as such, being clearly labelled there as an obsolete adjective. On another tack, a couple of competitors submitted clues that referred obliquely to J. B. S. Haldane and his statement that ‘The Creator, if He exists, has a special preference for beetles.’ I confess that I didn’t know this quotation but even if I had known it I think I would have judged the reference to be a little too specialized for fairness.