Listen With Others

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Listener No 4650: Two Names by Deuce

Posted by Dave Hennings on 2 Apr 2021

The theme of Deuce’s first Listener in October 2019 was something that didn’t exist five years ago — Brexit. This week, hopefully, a less contentious theme with a person to be identified by the seven numbered (but unclued) entries in the grid. The remaining clues, in alphabetical order, contained an extra word with two hints given by their first two letters.

Scanning grid lengths and answer lengths, the only 9-letter unnumbered entry was in the penultimate column. Its clue was therefore Monastery farm in Midi in dire aerial [assault] (9), and LAMASERIE was slotted in [MAS in AERIAL*] — nice to get, but at this stage totally useless!

Back to the top, and ALAE, ALARUM, ANT, ANTI, AROMA and ASP made me wonder whether every entry began with the letter A. Luckily BALLOT and BEMA disabused me of that. I also noticed that there were an awful lot of people dotted around the clues: Lowry, Cleopatra, Dorothy, O’Connor, Tarzan and Wolff. Oh, and not forgetting Rees-Mogg — bloody Brexit again! [Not quite. Ed.]

Just under an hour saw enough answers for me to be able to start filling the grid. Using LAMASERAI, the top right corner started me off, then across the top and down the left. Unclued 7ac was obviously SAPIENT, so we were looking for a wise man, and it looked as though 3ac at the bottom was MAMMALIA. Linnaeus came to mind but I couldn’t remember his first name. Luckily, Wiki could — it was Carl.

Begrudgingly, my favourite clue was probably the one mentioned above: Rees-Mogg’s old post here to some extent called it original [sin] (6) with its reference to William Rees-Mogg, the father of the current Member of Parliament for North East Somerset, and a former EDITOR of The Times.

The first two letters of the extra words in clues revealed two hints: He is like the protagonist of Genesis two twenty and A name to conjoin as in the close of the passage. Reaching for my old school bible, Genesis 2:20 soon revealed And Adam gave names to al cattle, and to the fowl of the air, and to every beast of the field; followed by but for Adam there was not found an help meet for him. (It’s a mystery to me why we’re told not to start a sentence with “And”, the Old Testament is littered with them.)

The seven unclued entries gave the taxonomy for all of us, but specifically the “thematic person’s self-description”: ANIMALIA, CHORDATA, MAMMALIA, PRIMATES, HOMINIDAE, HOMO, SAPIENS giving the binomial name Homo Sapiens.

So the preamble told us to rearrange the top row. Thus, CURSE LIANA L N gave CARL LINNAEUS and then a related person had to be highlighted. Wiki to the rescue again to find that Linnaeus’s wife was SARA MORAEA and it only took two (!) passes through the grid to find her reversed in the bottom row.

Remembering to change SAPIENT to SAPIENS, all was done. Thanks, Deuce.

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