Inquisitor 1508 A Big Sell by Gila

September 27, 2017

So after last week’s struggles, something a little easier perhaps? Quite a long preamble, but the gist of it seems to be extra letters from the wordplay, a handful of clashes, a spot of highlighting, a name to write below the grid. Onwards, with a hard rain driving outside. The joys of an Indian Summer.

The last three downs don’t have any extra letters, so are presumably normal clues? Yes they are, all three falling in a flash. Is the rest going to be this straightforward? Yes again, with the grid filling steadily from south to north west, and just the three clashes.

The end game’s going to be a pig, surely? Well, no, as it turns out. A couple of spurious extra letters in the acrosses (so what’s new, I hear you cry), but they’ve got to read GEORGE BLACK WEDNESDAY. Well, I can remember that quite clearly. Grown men sweating over spreadsheets trying to work out how soon they were going to default on their mortgage payments as interest rates rapidly spiraled. Who said that politics was dull?

Select one letter from each of the clashes? ERM I’m sure, but is the result supposed to end with real words, because CHAIERULE certainly isn’t one, and I can’t find anything wrong with CHAIN RULE, so it will have to stand. The solution will reveal all, and leave the grid below in tatters, no doubt…

The first protagonist? George SOROS, who appears to have done very well out of the whole thing.

The second? No sign of John Major, but, there he is, our hapless former Chancellor of the Exchequer, NORMAN LAMONT, and that’s the surname to write under the grid.

The extra letters from the down clues? I never did make sense of those, I’m afraid to say, but the rest was thoroughly enjoyable, a fine way to spend a wet Saturday afternoon.

Edited to add: Whoops, looks like I missed something by not getting those down letters, if you look over at Fifteensquared That’ll learn me! Next time, take note when the preamble says “provide decisive thematic information”. A definite win then for Gila, and a trap I fell hook, line and sinker for. 

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