Times-for-the-Times Easter crossword

Here’s the crossword to print off. Good luck!

If you’re a Times subscriber and want to do it online, the crossword uses the same grid as crossword 26,597 so you can use the grid for that crossword. Just remember that when you finish it’ll tell you that you got it wrong, so ignore that!

Thanks to all the contributors. It’s been an honour and a pleasure to be your editor. I’ve used/abused my position to change a few of the clues for various reasons.

The answers will be blogged on Tuesday; please no spoilers before then. Answers and hints will be removed! General comments, times taken, technical questions are welcome though.


French keyboards

Is France’s unloved AZERTY keyboard heading for the scrapheap?

1. I was taught that capital letters in French don’t have to be accented. I assume from reading this article that this “rule” stemmed from the fact that French typewriters have been unable to do accented capitals. But given that this situation has existed for so long (many decades, despite the article’s expressed “growing disuse of accented capitals” – in fact, accented capitals seem to be becoming more common again, in response to a combination of autocorrect and peevology), people are used to it, it’s become convenient and it creates no barrier to understanding, the calls for accented capitals on keyboards seems rather backward-looking, puristic and unwilling to accept change. Even worse is the laughable lament at the absence of ligatures on the keyboard. It’s a shame that the article doesn’t canvass any opinions on these matters from members of the public.

2. It hadn’t occurred to me that is the only use of u-grave in the language. I guess it’s used to avoid “confusion” with ou meaning or, but there are plenty of homonyms in French so it’s not clear why this one requires such an over-the-top “solution”. I’d just get rid of the distinguishing accent.

cancelled but not cancelled

When thinking of words which don’t mean the same in English as they do in most other languages, a classic example is “control”. But “cancel” is an example that hadn’t occurred to me before. A couple of days ago there was an orienteering race in Sweden and because of some technical difficulties the results of the race were voided. The race wasn’t “cancelled” however, because if it had been, it wouldn’t’ve taken place. I suppose the usual English term in these situations is “declare null and void”.