This blog is for everyone who uses words.

The ordinary-sized words are for everyone, but the big ones are especially for children.



Saturday, 7 February 2015

Saturday Rave: Farewell by H S Try.

You can't always trust one star reviews ('this book wasn't interesting because it didn't have any daleks in it') and five star ones must also be treated with extreme caution ('this is the best book ever written, and once it's published it'll be a must-read'); but sometimes you come across an expert opinion to which you are forced to defer.

Sir Jeremy Morse has for the last sixty years been the most consistently successful solver of crosswords in Britain. He makes up clues for crosswords, too, and as a matter of fact Colin Dexter named his famous cruciverbalist detective after him (though Dexter's Inspector Morse's first name was of course not Jeremy but Endeavor). 

All in all, I have to accept that Sir Jeremy knows a thing or two about crosswords.

Now, Sir Jeremy's favourite clue was written by HS Try. It goes like this:

In autumn, we’re piling up the last of the leaves. 

Now, I think it's a nice clue, too: highly evocative of smoky autumn days. Unfortunately what it is not evocative of, as far as I'm concerned, is the word farewell, which apparently is the answer to the clue.

Still, Sir Jeremy is the expert, so it must be absolutely brilliant.

Er...farewell?

Farewell???

File:CrosswordUSA.svg
image wikimedia commons  en:User:Michael J

Word To Use Today: cruciverbalist. This isn't a word you can use seriously, but it's good fun all the same. It means a crossword puzzle enthusiast. It's from the Latin words crux, cross, and verbum, word.

Hang on...farewell...well, fall means autumn, doesn't it, and farewell is to do with leaves. Ah, and we're is piled up (that is, written down with the two bits in the wrong order) in the middle of the word.

I think that all must be something to do with it...

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