RIP Araucaria

(28 Posts)
Rowlers Tue 26-Nov-13 22:51:32

From a crossword fan to the best setter ever.
I remember my parents looking forward to the crossword, even more so if it was set by Araucaria. And when I grew up enough to 'get' the whole cryptic crossword thing, I too appreciated his talent. A very sad loss.

Pooka Tue 26-Nov-13 23:02:37

RIP indeed.

Excellent puzzles. I flit between the guardian weekly ones and the times jumbo, definitely finding the times easier (perhaps just because it tended when I was younger to be a big family collective job).

Met Azed of the observer at a funeral once - fascinating to talk about the art of crossword setting.

Araucaria was my brother's all time favourite setter. sad

Oh yes. A very very sad day. going to be odd to never have a weekend without him.

Hope so much, as my cousin said, he has left us with one last xmas special.

RIP Auraucaria.

MrsBobHale Tue 26-Nov-13 23:06:09

Very sad news. He was my favourite setter and I particularly loved the jigsaw ones.

What an amazing and brilliant man. I hope my brain is still half as active as his at that age.

gwenniebee Tue 26-Nov-13 23:07:22

Oh sad! sad

Rowlers Tue 26-Nov-13 23:09:15

Yes he was certainly brilliant wasn't he? His clues always made me smile, they were so clever. His crosswords just felt right. Funny, I really do feel very sad. End of an era. Hope he didn't suffer too much.

ParsingFancy Tue 26-Nov-13 23:14:36

Very sad in this house. He announced a while back - in a crossword - that he was receiving palliative care.

So we've been savouring every crossword from him. While cursing and feeling murderous over the fiendish clues, of course.

I know its a bit ridiculous, but solving his crosswords made me feel like a human being through all the dark days of PND. Even if I only got a few, it felt like I was still me. IYSMIM.

Rowlers Tue 26-Nov-13 23:26:40

There is a lovely write-up on Grauniad website. 10 of his 'best' clues made me smile.

SoMuchToBits Tue 26-Nov-13 23:35:04

My sister will be very sad about this. Sis is very intelligent crossword woman who is the only woman ever to win the Times crossword championship. I struggle to get any clues at all in a cryptic crossword, so can only admire her.

I remember Araucaria setting crosswords in the 1970s (even though I had no idea what to do with them!)

HectorVector Tue 26-Nov-13 23:38:04

I don't know Araucaria but crosswords fascinate me, I just can't do them at all, but really wish I could.

RIP

Fiderer Wed 27-Nov-13 06:40:58

Madame Not ridiculous at all, doing the Guardian crossword books was a treat when I was really homesick, especially Araucaria.

In the Guardian article Simon Hoggart talks of Araucaria's "warm, nimble, generous yet invariably cunning mind." I enjoy the fact that each compiler has their own distinctive 'flavour'.

BerryLellow Wed 27-Nov-13 07:43:13

Oh sad his were my favourite. In the interview after he announced his illness he said he had a lot of crosswords compiled and 'in Stock'as it were.

Rowlers Wed 27-Nov-13 07:46:50

I saw that interview. As well as being brilliant, he came accross as a very lovely man. As much as I hope he's left some crosswords, it will feel sad completing them.

Oh how sad. I completely do not have a cryptic crossword brain, but my mum and sister do, and I know the pleasure he brought them.

hackmum Wed 27-Nov-13 09:44:28

Yes, Araucaria was my favourite too - cryptic but not impossibly hard. What a clever mind he must have had.

Rowlers Wed 27-Nov-13 10:57:43

I love this one. Typifies him.
of, of, of, of, of, of, of, of, of, of (10)

Fiderer Wed 27-Nov-13 16:14:02

I didn't get the nun one - anyone help?

Rowlers Wed 27-Nov-13 17:27:39

semi-automated - something perhaps done repetitively which one does as a creature of habit and nuns wear habits

Rooners Wed 27-Nov-13 17:32:39

Oh he was my favourite too. I used to love his ones when I was in a phase of doing them constantly about 15 years ago.

Rest peacefully old chap, and thankyou xxx

Fiderer Thu 28-Nov-13 07:40:51

Thanks Rowlers - I was thinking maybe semi meant half of automated.

I do love the way cryptic crosswords make you think every which way - and there's nothing like the feeling when you finally figure out the answer to a tricky clue. Especially if it's taken me days grin

Bloodybridget Thu 28-Nov-13 12:26:47

I too was sad to see that he had died. I hope he had an easy and peaceful end to his life.

eddiemairswife Fri 29-Nov-13 15:59:41

Lovely tribute crossword in today's Guardian. It's making me feel sad just reading the clues(and solving some of them).

Rowlers Fri 29-Nov-13 19:07:05

Just had a go at it. Made me even more sad as I didn't really like it! Best clue for me was 7 down. That, for me, was an Araucaria clue.

ipadquietly Fri 29-Nov-13 19:50:03

Also sad. I was really touched by the crossword that announced his terminal illness. What an amazing brain. RIP.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now