Inquisitor 1485 Man by Schadenfreude

April 19, 2017

Ah, Schadenfreude… Because my last shot at one of his puzzles was such a raging success… But the sun is shining, and there’s always the hope that this time will be different. The preamble looks straightforward enough – extra words in the across clues we need to remove, find a letter in common with the answer, remove it, put them all together to get a quotation that’s going to point us in the direction of what we need to do with the downs. I’m never particular happy if I can’t start filling the grid properly straight away, because it’s difficult to get much traction, but onwards anyway. Schadenfreude has a reputation for being hard, and lots of these clues certainly are, with the obvious added complications. But a couple of acrosses, and a few down clues solved, even if we don’t know what we’re going to do with them. It’s going to be a very long haul if we’re going to have to solve all the across clues in effect cold, so make a guess at what to do with the downs. Anagram? Backwards? No, it looks like we have to split the answers in half, put the bottom half to the top, or vice versa. And that works, across a fair few of the solved clues. That grid’s beginning to look a bit healthier. The phrase wading through mud describes further progress though, and halfway through the afternoon I literally nodded off. Blame the sunshine, not the puzzle.

To the evening, and slightly better progress, and… Let’s cheat. We’ve got enough of those letters from the acrosses to make a stab at the quotation: HALF TO RISE AND HALF TO FALL, which confirms what I’ve been doing with the down clues. It’s from An Essay on Man by Alexander Pope, so now we know what to put into the unclued 6d as well. Fill the grid with the extra bit of help we’ve now got, and… A win, even if perhaps not as Schadenfreude intended. Huzzah!

Until next time, then, and a man, with a plan.

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