Never knowingly undersolved.

Guardian 24230/Brendan – literally challenged

Posted by linxit on November 9th, 2007


I thought I’d made a mistake and printed out the TLS Crossword instead today! At least there were no unfinished quotations, and actually the only answer I wasn’t familiar with was 5dn. Amazing that every single answer belongs to the theme, without anything really obscure required.

7 HI,A(WATH=what*)A – I was thinking Asian Indian until I got the W. Duh!
9 ALLEY,N – this is Edward Alleyn, 16th century actor.
10 GLYN – aptly hidden in “darinGLY Naughty”, Elinor Glyn invented the dreaded crossword cliché “It” = sex appeal.
11 KE(NIL)WORTH – (The work)* around NIL – nice &lit, as Kenilworth is a romantic novel.
12 P(o)INTER
14 L(ANGL(e))AND – William Langland, 14th century poet.
15 GATS,BY – stag rev.
17 B,R,ECHT – echt is German for authentic, Bertolt Brecht is the &lit- defined German playwright.
20 RABELAIS (base liar)*
22 STEELE – “steel” – Richard Steele, co-founder of The Spectator.
23 O(SCARWIL)DE – SCARWIL being (scrawl I)*
24 AMIS(s)
26 SA(LIN=nil rev)GER – JD Salinger, author of the brilliant Catcher in the Rye.

1 FIELDING – cricket reference, and Henry Fielding, satirical novelist.
2 O(W)EN – W(ar) inside one* – Wilfred Owen, the WW1 poet.
3 STOKER – two meanings again – Bram Stoker, author of Dracula.
4 FAULKNER – (K Lear fun)*
5 ALTO(N) LOCKE – I guessed this from the wordplay and crossing letters in the end. Last one I put in. It’s a novel by Charles Kingsley.
6 LY(TT)ON – only* around TT (teetotaller). Lord Lytton, famous (among other things) for really starting a novel with “It was a dark and stormy night…”
8 ARNOLD (Landor*) – I assume this is Matthew Arnold.
16 B,RAN,WELL – Branwell was the less well-known brother of the Bronte sisters.
18 TULLIVER – Gulliver “initially altered”. Maggie Tulliver is the main character in George Eliot’s The Mill on the Floss.
21 AUSTEN – “Austin”, state capital of Texas.
22 S(TELL)A – “Stella“, real name Esther Johnson, was a friend of Jonathan Swift’s.
24,25A ANNA SEWELL – just a cryptic definition referring to Black Beauty, I think.

3 Responses to “Guardian 24230/Brendan – literally challenged”

  1. Michod says:

    Thanks for that – I got it all except FIELDING, but that included some answers which I’d have been hard put to flesh out with literary/ biographical explanation. Another impressive work of thematic construction from Brendan.

  2. radchenko says:

    Remarkable construction, indeed, but: “without anything really obscure”?

    GLYN, KENILWORTH, LANGLAND, STEELE, ALTON LOCKE, BRANWELL, TULLIVER and STELLA were all brand new to me. (Well, I are an enjinear, after all, and don’t come across too many 14th century English poets…)

    To be fair, I got a handle on some of these from the wordplay and crossing letters, and some from a google on e.g. bronte and scott (the definition being a bit obvious…), so was able to find them all online: maybe that’s what you mean by not being “really obscure”. But without a browser I’d have been completely stuck.

    Still, I’ve ended up better informed, but no etc etc

  3. fgbp says:

    A fantastic puzzle this. Even by Brendan’s standards, to manage to make every single entry (from an admittedly broad field) thematic was stupendous.

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