The Looking Glass : New Perspectives on Children's Literature, Vol 6, No 1 (2002)

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Curiouser-Acrostic X-9-6-1

Acrostic X-9


DOUBLE ACROSTIC X MINUS NINE

Joanne Schott


(In Looking Glass Land, things go in reverse.
The next acrostic, should there be one, will be X minus ten.)


You will need to print the acrostic in order to solve it. When the diagram is filled in, it will contain a quotation from a published work. Numbered squares in the diagram correspond to the numbered blanks to be filled in with the answers to the clues. The first letters of each answer, when read downwards, will spell the name of the author and the title of the work from which the quotation comes. The letter following the number in each square indicates the clue whose answer includes the letter to be entered in that square. Nearly all the clues have something to do with children's literature. You do not need to know more than about 8 (some say 6) answers to begin. As skeletons of words begin to form in the diagram and some initial letters of author and title are in place, work back and forth. Soon the parts of the puzzle will solve one another. Answers will be posted on the site on August 2, 2002.

Note: Depending upon your printer and page setup options, some of the right hand columns of the acrostic may not print. If the printed version does not match what you see on your screen, try going into the print setup menu and change the page orientation from Portrait to Landscape. If your printer supports output scaling (and your eyesight is good!) you can instead try reducing the output scale from 100% (try 90% to start) until all of the columns appear on the printed copy.

The White Knight thinks that since there are two acrostics, one of them excessively long, that it should help a very little bit to know that they are by the same author (in two moods). And he thinks solvers should know that if they remember their English lit classes, they might really be able to steam ahead in X minus 8's grid. He supposes all the Harry Potter clues are a sort of antidote to the frequent heavy dose of historical ones. He's read about Harry, by the way, as he likes to see what some of the new authors are up to. He feels a bit sorry for him, though he admires his character -- old-fashioned virtues and all. But Harry can't make anything! Does everything by magic! Where will he be if the magic stops working? Stranded, that's where. He needs to learn just a little elementary carpentry, nothing fancy or advanced -- just survival tinkering.

Companion acrostics X minus 8 and X minus 9 are likely the final ones to appear in The Looking Glass, though puzzle-maker Joanne Schott and the White Knight may make a surprise appearance from time to time. For more of these deliciously difficult puzzles, go Down the Rabbit Hole and check for the Acrostic in our back issues. -- Ed.

1H 2D   3R 4C 5V 6GG 7N   8BB 9A 10F 11I 12B   13D 14L 15CC 16EE 17G
  18DD 19A 20X   21W 22M 23V 24O   25R 26J 27FF 28CC 29Q   30DD 31P 32F 33K
34U   35C 36W 37A 38D 39EE 40J 41O 42T   43L 44G 45P   46Y 47R 48Z  
49S 50V 5IX 52AA   53GG 54BB 55W 56O 57T 58L 59CC   60Z 61Q 62U 63FF 64A   65J
66D 67P 68L   69EE 70AA 71CC 72O   73F 74Z 75E 76K 77S 78A 79DD   80BB 81AA  
82C 83D   84W 85B 86FF 87I 88L 89C 90O 91X 92J   93V 94CC   95GG 96R 97H 98Z
99FF   100E 101W 102F 103D 104K   105S 106C 107GG   108DD 109L 110U 111W 112AA   113M 114R
115Q   116X 117I 118CC 119Y 120T 121F 122FF   123BB 124EE 125D 126P 127AA 128B   129P 130A 131R
132Z 133GG 134L   135N 136EE   137DD 138EE 139CC 140BB 141F   142H 143O 144W 145K   146C 147FF
148X 149D 150J 151S 152W 153N   154E 155DD 156O 157Z 158L 159I 160V   161M 162N 163Q   164R
165X 166T 167FF 168DD 169U   170O 171R   172K 173CC 174Y 175EE 176B 177D 178AA 179T 180F 181I  
182S 183GG 184X 185A   186C 187P 188S   189V 190GG 191DD 192EE 193E 194Z 195BB 196G 197CC   198AA
199X 200C   201Z 202CC 203EE 204T   205Y 206P 207F 208FF 209I 210O 211AA   212L 213P 214A 215V
  216CC 217R 218D 219U   220GG 221C   222O 223FF 224EE 225A 226W 227GG 228Z   229CC 230T  
231AA 232T 233M 234BB 235DD   236J 237L 238S 239H   240K 241GG 242P 243A 244D 245DD   246E 247J
248CC 249S   250F 251O 252U   253Z 254EE 255V 256X 257L 258A 259P 260GG 261C 262M   263Y 264AA
  265R 266L 267O 268CC   269W 270EE 271GG 272C 273D 274FF 275F 276Q   277P 278B 279N 280A 281L
282J 283I 284G 285E 286C                              

A ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___
  280 225  78 185   9  37 214 243  64 258  19 130
Warrior princess of Russian folktales (2 wds)
B ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ 
   85 128 278 176  12
Natalie Babbitt's short story about Mr. Bezzle's encounters with a pig in hell
C ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ 
   89  82 272 106   4 221 200 146  35 186 286 261
American folklorist, collector of songs and stories, e.g. The Jack Tales (2 wds)
D ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___
   13 273 149 177  38   2  83 103 125 244 218  66
No game of Quidditch can end until the … is captured (2 wds)
E ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ 
  100 246 154 285  75 193
Be present at; give heed; wait on --- a versatile word
F ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ 
  207 102 121  73 275 250 180  10  32 141
Harry Potter's best friend (2 wds)
G ___ ___ ___ ___ 
   44 284 196  17
Bunting, Garnett, Rice and Titus
H ___ ___ ___ ___  
  142   1 239  97
"There is a … in the affairs of men" (Julius Caesar)
I ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ 
  117 209 159  87 283  11 181 
Those born without magical ability
J ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___
   40  92 236  26 150  65 247 282
"The King … Queen and the Queen … Dairymaid" (2 wds, appearing twice)
K ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ 
  240 145  76 172  33 104 
Harry Potter's owl
L ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___
   68 257 158 134 212 266  14  43 237  58  88 109 281
Romance written by Daisy Ashford, age 9, and published with an introduction by J.M. Barrie; The … (2 wds)
M ___ ___ ___ ___ ___
  161  22 113 233 262
"… " said Sleepy-Head; "Let's tarry awhile" said Slow (2 wds)
N ___ ___ ___ ___ ___
  162 279 153 135   7
19th century writer of over 80 boys' adventure stories, a staunch imperialist
O ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ 
  267  72 210 143 156 170  24 222  90 251  41  56
County librarian of Derbyshire who donated his collection of early children's books to the Toronto Public Library (2 wds)
P ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___
  213 126 277  31  67 129 259 242 187  45 206 
Charles Dickens's Cricket … (3 wds)
Q ___ ___ ___ ___ ___
  115  61 276  29 163
A number frequently significant in fairy tales
R ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___
   96 114   3 164  25 265 131 217 171  47
Hogwarts House whose students are hardworking and a bit stolid
S ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ 
   77 105 188 151 238  49 182 249
The word that Kay needed to make from pieces of ice to free himself from The Snow Queen
T ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___
  166 179  42  57 232 120 230 204
An Alan Garner title and an astronomical phenomenon (2 wds)
U ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ 
  169 252  62 219 110  34
Quidditch player responsible for capturing the item of Clue D
V ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___
   93  50 189 215   5 255 160  23
"… Little Fish!" From an Edward Lear Nonsense Alphabet (3 wds)
W ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___
   84 226 101  21 144 152 269  36  55 111 
Headmaster of Hogwarts
X ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___
  184  20  91 256 116  51 148 165 199
Guardian of …, periodical published 1802-1806 by Mrs. Trimmer which contained the first serious attempt to review books published for children
Y ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ 
  263 119 174  46 205 
The name of L. Frank Baum's California home
Z ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___
   48 201 157 194 132  74  60 253 228  98
Magical substance used by wizards to travel instantly by going from fireplace to fireplace (2 wds)
AA ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___
   112  52 264  81  70 178 127 211 198 231
When new students put this on, they learn which Hogwarts House they will belong to (2 wds)
BB ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ 234 195 8 140 54 80 123
In Swarm in May (Wm. Mayne), the smallest choir school student must sing the Beekeeper's … as a solo in the bishop's presence
CC ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___
   216 139  28 248  15 118  94 197 229 268 173 202  71  59
The biggest city in The Rootabaga Country (3 wds)
DD ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___
   168  18 235  30 155 137 191  79 108 245
Wm. Mayne novel based on an 18th century Yorkshire legend about a drummer boy who went in search of Arthur's treasure
EE ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___
   192 270 224 124 136  16 138  39  69 254 203 175
Author of many science fiction novels for children, e.g. Trillions and Grinny (2 wds)
FF ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___
   167 147  27  86 122  99 208 274 223  63
Novel by the author of this acrostic's quotation, about a girl who must become a witch to save her brother from possession by a wizard, The …
GG ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___
   133 227  95 183 107 260  53 220   6 190 241 271
1944 Newbery winner for Johnny Tremain (2 wds)

Volume 6, Issue 1, The Looking Glass, 2002

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Acrostic X-9" ©Joanne Schott, 2002
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The Looking Glass: new perspectives on children's literature

ISBN 1551-5680