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What's a "good" crossword?,
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This review is from: The "Guardian" Cryptic Crosswords Setters Series: Bunthorne (Paperback)Purely personally I see no point in crosswords that include words of which few have heard. Some of the clues have some wit and use a lot of ambiguity but what destroys it for me is that once you know how many obscure terms are sprinkled in, you can 'give up' on difficult ones when you could possibly have solved them. Primarily it is between you and the puzzle so having to resort to abstruse research works to find answers is like asking someone else to solve it for you; you might as well look at the solution in the back of the book! No problem with a dictionery if all you are doing is checking spelling or precise meaning etc. but beyond that step forward university challengers! Having said all that, Bunthorne's ingenuity is evident throughout this book.
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Showing 1-4 of 4 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 19 Jul 2010 17:54:14 BDT
Mr. David Dunford says:
A complaint often raised but one I rarely agree with. Yes, it's unsatisfactory when a word is utterly obscure and has obviously only been used to get the compiler out of a hole. But this rarely happens - the words chosen usually have SOME significance outside their own specialist fields and I for one LIKE learning new words. I don't consider referring to the dictionary as cheating (not easy on the bus, granted).
Posted on 19 Apr 2011 14:34:20 BDT
Mrs. Gillian E. Snape says:
You should perhaps have used a dictionary to check how to spell dictionary.
In reply to an earlier post on 22 Apr 2011 22:04:58 BDT
Alan Walton says:
Thank you for spotting that Gillian. If I was going to make such a silly error, why did it have to be in this kind of review?!! Anyway I hope you enjoy solving the cryptics as much as I do, particularly those extra witty ones that stick in the mind. This "Guardian" series certainly has its share of these.
In reply to an earlier post on 22 Apr 2011 22:29:36 BDT
Alan Walton says:
A very fair point, and it has to be said that sometimes you can work out what the word probably is from the clue even though it is one you have never heard of. I have to agree that resorting to the dictionary or other reference works to check if the word exists or to check spelling or nuance of meaning is perfectly justified and certainly I do not regard it as cheating. As you say, not easy on the bus, but as an alternative I can recommend the pocket calculator type of dictionary like the Seiko Concise O.E.D.
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