Inquisitor 1720 Comings and Goings by Eclogue

October 19, 2021

This would be the week that my solving time would be unexpectedly cut rather short, my son having grasped the nettle and insisted that we go to see No Time To Die at the cinema, which I’d been itching to see since early 2020. I will not give away any spoilers, except to note that it’s one of the best, if not the best, and,,. Well, go and watch it, and find out for yourself.

Thankfully, Eclogue’s puzzle was one that was IQ 2d, my time having been cut short yet further thanks to the twins’ first solo shopping trip to town which required the the services of a driver…

Rather belatedly, then… Some clues with wordplay omitting letters, others where we have a surplus. This sort of thing can mean a pretty tough solve, but this week was definitely IQ 2d, from a pretty easy anagram at 1ac onward, some letters duly noted at the bottom of the grid, others jotted beside the clues, with, it must be said, little ado.

PREVIOUS NIGHT and ARTHUR BULLER duly noted, a quick Google search led to his poem, Relativity, the existence of which I’d remained blissfully ignorant of until now.

There was a young lady named Bright
Whose speed was far faster than light;
She set out one day,
In a relative way
And returned on the previous night.

Which is where I’ve potentially come unstuck, the remaining instruction informing us that we needed to highlight two rows that provide cryptic representations of the poem. A betting man would have said, without reference to the poem, that the unsilvered top and bottom rows, containing real words throughout, were good bets, but I do have a niggling doubt not being 100% sure how they cryptically refer to three lines in the poem, outside of BRIGHT, and NO ROAD (“set out one day, In a relative way”???)

But I haven’t got any better ideas, so, as they say, publish and be damned. So, with thanks to Eclogue for a fun, and most definitely lite outing… 

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3 Responses to “Inquisitor 1720 Comings and Goings by Eclogue”

  1. Willow said

    It took five days but I did manage to finish this, and got all the extra references, (set off ONE DAY in REL ROAD; BRIGHT REPLIED; (If someone called “BRIGHT!”, to the lady in question, I suppose she might reply?: PREVIOUS NIGHT), and parsed almost every clue except that for CARLISM. I don’t understand the SEAL bit. Can anyone help me out?

    On the way I was thinking about which poet it might be. Having solved MEDIATORIALLY I did wonder if it might be Rupert Brooke. A MEDIA TORY ALLY of David Cameron might have been Rebekah Brooks. Eventually, having obtained 9 of the 12 poet letters, I hazarded a guess at Arthur Burrell. OK, it’s one letter too long, but he did write something to do with Piers Plowman. Then I hit the nail on the head with Arthur Buller, and discovered the limerick. I already had LIGHT which helped.

    Overall I think I enjoyed this, but there was a great deal of pernickety wordplay to deal with, and simply loads of abstruse words which I will probably never encounter again. The clue for PATEN wins my award for the most obscure clue ever. But I am left in awe about how the setter managed to put it all together.

    • jonofwales said

      Good to hear you had a go at this one and finished, Willow!

      The seal bit is a real obscurity – LS – loco sigilli (Latin), in the place of the seal. Needless to say I didn’t know this!

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