Puzzles & games


Bridge | 4 September 2014

One person who lets out a whoop of delight when I am on holiday is my saintly partner, Artur Malinowski. He gets a holiday too — from me and my daft mistakes — and can play proper bridge with some of the greats who are dying to partner him. This time it was the turn


Gifted and talented

Despite occasional evidence to the contrary, I have persisted in the belief that the ability to play chess well indicates a powerful intelligence. Goethe wrote that chess was a touchstone of the intellect, while Pascal called it the gymnasium of the mind. Arthur Koestler romanticised the mental power of chess devotees, writing: ‘When a chess


Rhyme time | 4 September 2014

In Competition No. 2863 you were invited to recast a well-known nursery rhyme in the style of a well-known author. The entry was evenly split between prose and poetry but in general verse worked better. Commendations go to Chris Port, Mike Morrison, Max Ross, Nick MacKinnon, Adrian Fry and Mark Shelton. The winners earn £25


2178: Saint and playwright

The unclued lights are connected by 33/23. One pair of unclued lights gives one context, in which two further pairs of unclued lights are followers of 33/23; remaining unclued lights, in another sense, are 33/23’s predecessors.   Across 1    Nasty offer about shock treatment for responsive organ (8) 8    Rubber — a lump’s returned (4) 11   

Crossword solution

to 2175: Elated grunt

The four works were Waverley (anagram of 12/21), Kenilworth (15/8), The Talisman (29/2) and Ivanhoe (38/37) by SIR WALTER SCOTT (diagonally NW to SE) which was to be shaded. Title: anagram of Redgauntlet.   First prize Roy Robinson, Sheffield Runners-up Sebastian Robinson, Glasgow; M.F. O’Brien, London N12


No. 330

White to play. This position is from Polgar-Bareev, Moscow 1996. Neither king is entirely happy and in such situations having the move can be crucial. It was here — what did Polgar play? Answers to me at The Spectator by Tuesday 9 September or via email to victoria@spectator.co.uk or by fax on 020 7681 3773.