Posted by duncanshiell on December 20th, 2007
There were three important parts to the preamble:
1. Every across clue lacked a definition and the wordplay generated a word which could be associated with the entry at that number – i.e the actual entries had to be deduced.
2. Each down clue contained one word that simply represented its first letter in the wordplay, but was otherwise normal.
3. These eighteen words provided the nature of the across associations, in no particular order.
The title – Who’s Who – suggested something to do with famous people.
A first scan of the preamble had me scratching my head a bit, but the realisation that there were exactly 18 across clues as well as exactly 18 down clues helped me to understand the instructions more clearly.
After reading the down clues and solving a couple, things began to crystalise and the theme became very clear.
In the down clues there were many descriptive words like ‘novelist’, ‘composer’, ‘dramatist’ and ‘pianist’. In the majority of clues it was fairly obvious which was the important word, but there were a couple of red herrings such as ‘apostle’ and ‘bishop’.
I found it easier to solve the down clues first given that the first letter of the representational words was a key part of the wordplay.
Following the entry of a few down clues, and the solution of the more obvious across clues, a couple of the actual across entries could be deduced and it became apparent that the across clues led to the Surnames of frontiersmen, singers, poets etc while the across entries were the appropriate Christian names of these people.
In the explanations below for the across clues, I have given the answer to the clue first and then indicated the actual entry with a very short note about the individual.
For the down clues I have indicated the representational word before explaining the clue.
Solving time: One fairly long evening session – say three hours, which included some interesting research about many of the people.
Some of the individuals could be classified in more than one way – e.g. Tariq Ali could be an activist and a writer, and Diana Mitford could be a sister and an activist. However, I think there is a unique association for all but novelist and writer which could cover either or both of Louisa Alcott and Margery Allingham. I have gone with writer for Allingham and novelist for Alcott, but the actual association was not part of the solution to be submitted.
Grid entries are shown below in red; while the representational words are shown in blue
|1.||REYNOLDS||- anagram of ‘ONLY‘ inside ‘REDS‘; using revolutionary as an anagram indicator and as a noun||JOSHUA – Sir Joshua Reynolds, painter, 1723-1792|
|5.||ALCOTT||- AL (aluminium); COT (bedstead); T (a short ,or light, form of ‘that’)||LOUISA – Louisa May Alcott, novelist, 1832-1888|
|9.||SIBLEY||- SI (South Island); BLEY (bleak)||ANTOINETTE – Dame Antoinette Sibley, ballerina, 1939-|
|11.||SWIFT||- S(H)IFT (get on with) with W (wife) replacing H (henry)||JONATHAN – Jonathan Swift, satirist, 1667-1745|
|13.||WILSON||- LSO (London Symphony Orchestra) inside WIN (success)||SANDY – Sandy Wilson, composer, 1924-|
|14||SANSOM||- SAN (almost extinct nomadic bushman of S. Africa); SO (very good); M (money)||ODETTE - Odette Sansom GC, heroine, 1912-1995|
|15.||CROCKETT||- CROCK (pot); E (English); TT (Tourist Trophy)||DAVY – Davy Crockett, frontiersman, 1786-1836|
|17.||HUGHES||- HE (male) inside, or breaking, HUGS (wrestling grips)||NERYS – Nerys Hughes, actress, 1941-|
|18.||ALLINGHAM||- A (are); LL (lines) IN (belonging to); G (good); HAM (actor)||MARGERY – Margery Allingham, writer, 1904-1966|
|20.||BEHAN||- BE (live); HAN (native Chinese people)||BRENDAN - Brendan Behan, playwright, 1923-1964|
|22.||ALI||- (M)ALI (african country) without leading M (abbreviation for minutes)||TARIQ – Tariq Ali, activist, 1943 -|
|27.||AMOS||- reverse of (=knocked back) SOMA (intoxicating juice)||TORI - Tori Amos, singer, 1963-|
|28.||CARDEW||- CARD (comb); EW (two thirds, or a lot of, ewe)||CECILY – Cecily Cardew, character in The Importance of Being Earnest (1895)|
|29.||MITFORD||- T (Thailand) in M1 (motorway) and FORD (river crossing)||DIANA – Diana Mitford, sister, one of six Mitford sisters, 1910-2003|
|30.||CURZON||- CUR (dog); ZO (hybrid or cross of male yak and horned cow); N (name)||CLIFFORD – Clifford Curzon, pianist, 1907-1982|
|31.||CHURCHILL||- most of CHUR(L) (surly fellow) followed by most of CHILL(Y) (aloof)||CLEMENTINE - Baroness Clementine Churchill, baroness, 1885-1977|
|32.||MERKEL||- MEL (honey) containing or embracing ERK (aircraftsman)||ANGELA – Angela Merkel, currently German Chancellor, 1954-|
|33.||HEANEY||- AN E (ecstasy, illicit stimuland and hallucinogenic drug) inside HEY (country dance)||SEAMUS - Seamus Heaney, poet, 1939-|
|1.||sister||JANSEN||- S (sister) inside, or introduced to, JANE (girl) with N (new) – Cornelius JANSEN, Catholic Bishop of Ypres|
|2.||character||ST ANDREW||- STAND (an adopted attitude); (C)REW (gang without the leading C (character)), – Apostle ST ANDREW|
|3.||baroness||HOBDAY||- HO (hold); B (baroness); DAY (24 hours) – HOBDAY: to cure a breathing impediment|
|4.||novelist||ANONYMA||- anagram (reformed) of MY (N)ANO NO without (ignoring) an N (novelist) – ANONYMA: showy woman of easy morals|
|5.||heroine||LENOS||- reverse upwards of (all over) S(H)ONE (glowed) L (luminance) without H (heroine) – LENOS: thin muslin-like fabrics|
|6.||ballerina||UTTER||- (B)UTTER (flattery) without the leading B (baroness) – UTTER: extreme|
|7.||activist||SCATURIENT||- anagram (drunk) of A (activist) and TINCTURES – SCATURIENT: gushing|
|8.||composer||ANNECY||- ANNE (girl); C (composer); Y(year) – ANNECY: city in France|
|10.||writer||WATERMELON||- W (writer); ATE (consumed); RM (royal marine = jolly); ELON (anagram of noel) – WATERMELON: fruit|
|12.||painter||ADAR||- (P)RADA (fashion house) upwards, or rising, without the leading P (painter) – ADAR: twelfth month of Jewish ecclesiatical year|
|16.||singer||SERIATIM||- anagram (broadcast) of S (singer) and AIRTIME – SERIATIM : one after another|
|19.||dramatist||ANTARES||- anagram of STAR EDNA without D (dramatist) – ANTARES: first magnitude star in Scorpius|
|20.||satirist||BOCCIA||- BO (fellow); CC (Catholic college); I(S) (is without S (satirist)); A – BOCCIA Italian form of bowls (In Chambers 2006, not in 2003)|
|21.||pianist||DELF||- D (diamonds); (P)ELF (money without P (pianist)) – DELF: – earthenware made in Delft|
|23.||poet||ARISTA||- (P)ARIS (abductor of Helen of Troy, less P (poet)); T(troy); A (accepted) – ARISTA: bristle-like appendage on some insects’ antennae|
|24.||Chancellor||QUAKES||- QU (queen); (C)AKES (maids-of-honour are cakes) without C (Chancellor) (= or c leaving) – QUAKES: shudders|
|25.||frontiersman||RIFLE||- RILE (get irritated) enclosing, or about, F(frontiersman) – RIFLE: plunder|
|26.||actress||MYOMA||- down clue with A (actress) at the bottom supporting Y (mathematical unknown) inside MOM (mother) – MYOMA: tumour of muscular tissue|