Listen With Others

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‘Round’ by Lavatch

Posted by Encota on 20 Jan 2017

A gentle puzzle to end 2016 – many thanks to Lavatch.  And many thanks to all at The Listener for a very enjoyable 2016 of puzzles!

At the end of Her Majesty’s 90th birthday year, it was excellent to see her featured as ER, along with MARA, that ever-appearing hare-like creature returning, in such a Smiley fashion.  It must be a sign – for a better 2017 perhaps…


But more seriously…the solving path for me went something like this:

The use of ‘inside’ in the Preamble plus a Title of ‘Round’ meant a closed shape would be required; so when ?ERRI? appeared on Row 1 after solving a few clues then FERRIS and therefore WHEEL looked like the way forward.  CATHERINE went in quickly as did a few more.

As the Instruction began to appear as HIGHLIGHT THE ?ATI? QUOTATION IN SYMMETRICAL FORM, I confess that I did start by fooling myself that the missing ‘word’ was probably LATIN with the L somehow coming from YEARN changing to LEARN – and thus spent a few moments scanning the Grid for some Latin words – then the C appeared and I realised that THE ?ATI? was actually all one word, THEMATIC, so reading overall:

After completing the Grid then, as usual, I entered the ‘gridstare phase’, which I am normally pretty slow at; luckily, however, I spotted WHEEL on a diagonal in the NE of the puzzle and, with a slight change to the L selected, soon spotted the full circle (in more ways than one).  A quick double-check to be sure the unchecked letters (G, R, E, S, H) within the circle were all different and that one of those was repeated just outside the circle (R), and all was solved.  THE WHEEL IS COME FULL CIRCLE.

So ends my first ever year of attempting The Listener.  I’ve submitted all 52, though have little idea how accurate I have been: if I manage 80-90% correct then I will be very happy!

Finally, a belated Happy New Year to All involved with The Listener!  I look forward to meeting some of you again at the annual dinner in a couple of months.

Tim / Encota

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