Thursday, 4 August 2016

Understanding Cryptic Clues - Clue Type "B" (CB series)


I’ve scripted this topic in the form of a conversation between you, the reader and me, the author. 
Your part of the conversation is mentioned in blue.

Me: Here is a clue
         Dull leap (4)
You: On reading this clue, what should we do?

Me: Think of an answer. There are a few ground rules to be followed for getting the answer.
        Answer is always a word or phrase. (For now, let’s consider it as a single word)
           No. of letters comprising the answer is always mentioned in parenthesis at the end of the clue. (In this case, it is a 4 letter word) 
        Answer is always the meaning or synonym of a part of the clue.
You: Meaning or synonym of “a part of the clue” How do I identify this part?
Let us name this part of the clue as “Question”. The challenge lies in identifying the Question
Generally, it is either at the beginning or end of the clue. It can be a single word or a string of words. But for now, let us consider it ‘to be learnt with experience’.

You: What is the purpose of the remaining part of the clue?
Me: Remaining part of the clue is used to get the answer. It also helps in pinning down that specific word in case of more than one possible answer.
        Let me name this part of the clue as “Help”. We need to use “Help” to get the answer.
        Let us recall the clue “Dull leap (4)”
        Let us assume that the word “Dull” is the Question. We need to take the help of the word “leap” and get the answer. Remember, this is a different clue type and not Clue type “A”. So answer is not embedded in the word “leap”. Let us try shuffling the letters of the word “leap” Try creating new words out of them.

You: Some words that can be created are PEAL, PLEA, PALE.
Me: Which of these words is the synonym of “Dull”?
You: It is “PALE”. So is “PALE” the answer?
Me: You are right. So, in this case, we jumbled the letters of a word to create another word. These type of words are called “Anagrams”. Let us name this type of clue as Clue Type “B

You: What if we consider “leap” as the question?
Me: Let us say “leap” is the question. Now, we need to jumble letters of the word “dull” to create another            word which is a synonym of “leap”. Can we get it? We can’t. So “leap” cannot be the question.

RECAP
Summary of General Ground Rules for Cryptic Clues
Answer is always a word or phrase.
No. of letters comprising the answer is always mentioned in parenthesis at the end of the clue.
Answer is always the meaning / synonym of a part of the clue.
Answer is derived by using remaining part of the clue.
Hint for Clue Type “B”: Answer lies within the clue but letters of the word are jumbled.

Wanna try solving a few clues? ….go to CB 1 to CB 5

To go back, click on Understanding Cryptic Clues - Type A
Did you read this: "Lazing around with English" If not, please read.

Cryptic Clues posted here are a part of "Play with Words" section in this blog. Few other sections that I've created in this blog include "Nostalgia" "Mangala's Potluck" "My Paintings"  Poems, Creative Writing etc.

To read my first post in this blog, click "My First Post"
Feel free to read about me at "Hey....Meet Me!"

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