◀  No. 547 Clue list 2 Aug 1959 Slip image No. 555  ▶



1.  R. Postill (Jersey): Hell! Monmartre’s expensive. Well … I mustn’t go there too often or I’ll be broke! (pit + cher (Fr.); ref. proverb, “The p. that goes too often to the well is broken at last”).

2.  C. J. Morse (SW10): I’m a promising slip, but my bowling action would be banned at Lord’s—in crude terms it’s a flick! (‘picture’, 2 defs.).

3.  Rev C. M. Broun (Edinburgh): Ruth, for instance, would follow reapers with a fork (2 mngs.; ref. Babe R., baseball, pitchfork; cf. Bk. of R. 2:7).


C. Allen Baker (Milnathort): A caster who gives the leading part in a play to someone who’s lousy may be a bit cracked! (p + itcher).

F. D. H. Atkinson (Claygate): You’ll find awful tripe highly commended. It’s the setter! (anag. incl. HC).

F. Aylmer (Cobham): Ball-bearing projector produced in U.S.A. Small model has extended sound apparatus (2 mngs.; ref. baseball and proverb “little p.s have big ears”).

Lt Col P. S. Baines (Chatham): What a vessel! Guaranteed to produce an uneasy sensation inside for everyone! (itch in per, & lit.).

R. S. Caffyn (Cheltenham): Pavement artist in London might so describe a sample of his work (‘picture’; p. = paving stone).

F. D. Gardiner (Henfield): I’m prepared to catch insects—the result of having been bitten in a backward small-town theatre! (itch in rep rev.; p. plant).

S. B. Green (NW10): Quiet one straining at the leash who has his fling (p itcher).

Mrs E. J. Holmes (W5): Three early pieces from Tchaikovsky in the Promenade make a catchy item for the hummers (Tch(aikovsky) in pier; p. plant, insects).

G. Kirsch (Shenley): Distance between successive locations attended by the Queen would make one of the Yankees flag! (pitch ER, 2 defs.; ref. baseball team).

M. Newman (Hove): I have my fling, but hold the liquor—so I’m not exactly a tosspot! (2 mngs.).

I. J. Nicholas (Wellingborough): Thrower shows how to get cutting to take root (2 mngs.; ref. Percy T, BBC gardening expert; see pitcher under pitch1).

W. H. Pegram (Enfield): One who has a constant desire to get within Petticoat Lane’s limits and take! (itch in P,e + r., & lit.; ref. market stalls).

E. J. Rackham (Totton): This vessel’s the one to toss, and I retch unhappily by the ship’s stern (p + anag., 2 defs.).

Mrs J. Robertson (Georgeham): Was this stall-holder well-supplied in the Black Market? (3 mngs.; pitcher to the well, pitch-black).

W. K. M. Slimmings (Worcester Park): I coveted “The Passing of Ruth” by Constable, filled with that indefinable quality attributed to woman (it in PC + her; ref. Babe R.).

L. W. Titman (Barton on Humber): The cut price crazy paving stone (anag. less e).

J. V. Tyson (Keswick): This vessel needs merely to start passage and immediately I retch horribly (p + anag., & lit.).


D. B. J. Ambler, J. W. Bates, E. A. Beaulah, Mrs F. Begg, B. Burton, A. N. Clark, D. L. L. Clarke, A. E. Crow, N. C. Dexter, F. E. Dixon, L. L. Dixon, E. R. Evans, L. E. Eyres, J. A. Fincken, Mrs N. Fisher, H. L. Ford, Mrs J. O. Fuller, A. B. Gardner, J. Gill, S. Goldie, E. Gomersall, E. J. Griew, J. D. Hatfield, E. L. Hayward, C. H. Hudson, J. Hunter, Mrs L. Jarman, Rev R. Jarvis, V. Jennings, T. E. S. Jobson, A. H. Jones, A. Lawrie, G. R. Liebert, A. W. Maddocks, J. Martin, Miss G. M. May, W. L. Miron, J. J. Moore, S. L. Paton, S. Plumb, G. W. Pugh, E. W. Richart, W. G. Roberts, A. Robins, N. Roles, Mrs E. Shackleton, Mrs E. M. Simmonds, F. G. Simms, H. J. Snelgar, A. J. Sobey, P. B. Wood, Dr R. L. Wynne.

COMMENTS—326 entries, 301 correct. There were a good many new or newish competitors, some of whom were very successful; but some have not quite got the idea, and as it is several months since I aired some of my elementary principles, I will do so again this time at the risk, I fear, of boring hardened campaigners: these must, complacently if possible, bear with me for the sake of newcomers and one or two who have forgotten.
A clue without a definition of or a reference to the whole word is, to me, not a clue at all. “To hell, dear!” is delightfully simple, but it is not a clue to “pitcher”.—We must be accurate about pronouns: “she’ll follow” is no indication of “her”: “her” is “her” and “she” is “she”.—Anagrams: a clear indication must be given that an anagram is being used and, further, an indirect anagram, giving a definition instead of the actual word, is unfair unless the indication is unambiguous. Here is a clue which violates both these principles at once:—“Careless metric insect catcher” (anag. of pherecratic = metric, less care). This is so difficult as to be useless to a solver. Incidentally the clue lacks interest through making no sense: insect catchers can hardly be metric. An example of what I consider a legitimate indirect anagram was “boom, boom, boom” for “three booms”: this is a very different matter. Another quite unfair one submitted was “Honour? Rubbish, chucked about” (CH, tripe anag.). This is far too vague: there are dozens of honours indicated by initials and many synonyms for rubbish.—Wording must be accurate: here is an example of bad wording:—“Why should I scratch in the usual way—it’s not cricket”. The first four words might do for “pitch”, but “per” certainly does not mean “the usual way”; and while it might be true in one sense to say that pitching is not cricket, we are writing a clue to pitcher, not pitching.—A clue to a clue is not fair, e.g., “Always present at low dance” (base-ball): “A cruise, one hears” (cruse). These are unfair simply because what they say is untrue: a pitcher is not present at a low dance, nor does a pitcher sound like a cruise: these devices arc sound when referring to the word itself, not when referring to a clue to it—Finally, in a hidden clue there should be no redundant words (other than an “a” or “the” in the hiding place e.g. “It’s part of Khrushchev’s responsibility towards Russia to keep it, cherish it”; all those “spoof” words which do not contribute to pitcher are unfair and also inartistic. I hope these hints may help.
May I remind you that the next competition puzzle will be the one on Aug. 30, not Sept. 6: it will be a “Playfair.”
P.S.—Since the awards appeared I have learnt that B.R. was a batter, not a pitcher. This makes Mr. Broun a bit lucky, and I apologise to others for my ignorance. I hope B.R. was occasionally an all-rounder and pitched now and then!

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