Could you have been a codebreaker at Bletchley Park? – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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Could you have been a codebreaker at Bletchley Park?

The Daily Telegraph’s cryptic crossword on January 13 1942 played a crucial role in helping the Allies win the Second World War. If you can solve it in 12 minutes, you could have helped crack the Enigma code.

You can read all about it, and have a go at the puzzle yourself, here.

Benedict Cumberbatch stars as Alan Turing in The Imitation Game

13 comments on “Could you have been a codebreaker at Bletchley Park?

  1. If you choose the print option for the article, you just get the text, not the crossword. I had to play around a bit and select “save picture as” to get a print-out of just the crossword grid and the clues. I may have been doing it the hard way, but I managed it and now have a PDF that I’m saving for tomorrow.

  2. Without Ximenean rules it’s chaotic. Is it a quick clue? Is it an anagram…hidden….what? I tied myself up trying this. Kudos to anyone who can solve that! Let alone as quickly as the future code breakers did then. It would be interesting to see this one blogged!

  3. I got about half a dozen answers (one wrong) before admitting defeat and looking at the answers. I would never have got close! Surely 19d has to be thumb-nail.
    What I want to know is how many difficulty stars BD gave it.

        1. Indeed. I am fully aware of my croswwording limitations, although having read and commentated on this blog for a month my skills have improved enormously. However I did sort of think BD could be a modern day cryptographer. That is a compliment. On a side note I have finally solved it.

          1. I guess that means our only hope of salvation could rest with CS. Maybe she’ll let us know whether she beat the 12 mns. deadline.

            1. I have to admit quite a few of my answers were absolute bung it in and hope, really hope. Hey ho.

  4. A very strange puzzle indeed. Bit of a hodge-podge. I can’t say I enjoyed it much. It was more a battle of wills.

    I had three (or so I thought) left in the SE corner, having put clanging in for 20 down. So, with a T and N in 23A, I had what I thought was a Eureka moment…Tinny! Knowing that Tin is slang for cash, I googled Tinny and sure enough it’s an old Australian word for money. I was so confident that was right, but 21D then proved impossible, as did 24A. At that point, I gave in and checked the answers. I had 20D wrong, but though I think the correct answer would probably have given me 31A. I would never have got 24A (though I’ve heard of Mary of that family) and definitely not got 21D, though it does make sense if you know the origin of fortnight.

  5. Has anyone attempted to blog this? It would be interesting to find out how some of the clues are supposed to work

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