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||12×12 barred grid with 90° symmetry. There is a space to be completed under the grid (2,4,4,2).
||The answer to each of 12 clues must have all instances of a letter removed before entry: these 12 distinct letters spell out two keywords forming a two-word entry in The Oxford English Dictionary. The answers to another 12 clues must be encoded before entry by adding letters from one or other of the keywords: if the first of these answers were FLY, for example, it might encode to RUM by adding (using A = 1, 27, B = 2, 28, etc) the letters LIN from a keyword LINOTYPE (F+L = 6+12 = 18 = R, L+I = 12+9 = 21 = U, Y+N = 25+14 = 39 = M): the next answer would add the letters OTY, the next PEL, and so on cyclically. Each remaining clue contains a misprint of one letter; the incorrect letters give the keywords in corrupt form and the correct letters (an anagram of the keywords) give what LinotypeŽ operators would often have had in mind (to be entered in the box at the foot of the grid). Numbers in brackets indicate the lengths of grid entries. The Chambers Dictionary (2008) is the primary reference.
|The letters omitted from twelve entries spell ETAOIN SHRDLU. This phrase gives the twelve most commonly used letters in the English language in approximately the order of frequency. The twelve encoded entries are the four-letter words. In the remaining twelve clues, the misprints give the letters of ETAOIN SHRDLU (in "corrupt form" - see forme in The Chambers Dictionary) and the correct letters gave what LinotypeŠ operators may often have had in mind, namely "to rush lead in" (itself an anagram of the theme), which is to be written under the grid.|
|Keywords||ETAOIN SHRDLU Linotype to rush lead in|
||Preamble and solution notes © The Times. Reproduced with permission.
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