Inquisitor 1599 A Little Rough Justice by Penumbra

June 25, 2019

So another week rolls by, and with it another Inquisitor – one with a pretty lengthy preamble too. What do you do when faced with a lengthy preamble you can’t get to grips with? Ignore all the stuff at the bottom and start with the simple stuff. The simple stuff being wordplay that leads to the answer plus an extra letter. That I can cope with.

It has also stopped raining for the moment, so solving can take place in a relatively quiet environment. I have a table and chair hidden in a corner of the garden especially for such rare, fleeting occasions.

The grid fill in terms of difficulty? We still seem to be on a run of easier entries following Wan’s mammoth offering of the other week, so middling, even if it took a few entries to get going. First in being a nice friendly anagram of NORITE with an extra U. A PROWL CAR sounds like the sort of thing I should have heard of, but haven’t. And is ENORM really archaic, don’t all the kids say that these days? We’ve got two to the NW that aren’t in the BRB but are in Collins. To date when the preamble specifies entries in Collins I’ve just Googled the answers and hoped for the best, but at least one is particularly obscure so Google leads instead to a handy version of Collins online. Why did nobody tell me it was there before?

So, grid done. The quote from the extra letters? As expected large chunks consist of question marks, but with enough letters in place to guess the remaining few with a little help from the aforementioned search engine… “You can get a happy quotation anywhere if you have the…” “eye” being the missing word, by one Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr – which are presumably the initials at the end. I only did ever manage to get the W though.

The latter bit of the preamble? I must admit that I didn’t crack most of it, but what is clear is that we’re looking for something to highlight, quotations presumably. And lo and behold there are two across the diagonals which are missing just a central… i.

“Firm fair price.”
“Wisdom in words.”

Presumably referring to the esteemed organ in which the puzzle appears. The appropriate colour, based on “a prominent example in plain sight”? Red? Got to be.

The other hints? Nope, didn’t get those. But lob a big red i in the middle of the grid, highlight the quotations, and we’re done, aren’t we? Yes, I think we are, and at the close in a pretty good time too with more than a modicum of entertainment gleaned throughout. So raise a glass to Penumbra – another good one – we’re on a roll.

Next week the big 1600, which is significant, presumably? 😉

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