Listen With Others

Are you sitting comfortably? Then we’ll begin

Question and answer by Chalicea: setter’s blog

Posted by shirleycurran on 18 Dec 2022

Who could resist that theme? The answer is that a number of people couldn’t! The Square Routes puzzle for 26 November, had the words to search for as HOWARD CARTER LORD CARNARVON and LADY EVELYN HERBERT. Shark’s superb puzzle in the 3D Calendar puzzle series was on the theme (please take a look and perhaps support this annual publication which is created by a group of volunteers in aid of blind and partially blind children) and of course it appeared in the press. My favourite was a lovely two-page spread in the New Scientist.

though The Times, of course, exploited the fact that they bought their way into publicising the event 100 years ago and fought an arduous battle to keep everyone else out. I felt that it was a shame that their many-sided fold-out supplement focused on that rather than on the glories of the find.

I couldn’t resist the theme and worked on it almost two years before the anniversary. The test-solvers (Many thanks to them! Their corrections and tweaks were invaluable) all agreed that it was ‘too easy for a Listener’ and when I submitted it in August 2021, I suspected that the editors would say the same. “1 hour (considerably easier than average)” was the verdict of one of them and it took the other even less, but it appeared anyway with editorial tweaks adding some difficulty and I was delighted with the warm response of solvers who were almost unanimous in expressing their enjoyment of the puzzle.

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