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Many-time solver/first-time setter and so feedback is strongly solicited. This puzzle was written by me for a set of puzzles to celebrate a particular anniversary, but was not used.


Divide the following words into sets of three:

Words
BAG BLED CORRAL DELHI DURER
HOGARTH LEAD MATISSE PARKING PER
PHOSPHORUS PURSE SOFTLY TRAMLINE YELLOW

What anniversary is being marked?

HINT:

The five sets each have single word associations, at least three of which should be unambiguous. The five words form a title.

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  • $\begingroup$ Is the word-property tag intended? Do you mean connect-wall? $\endgroup$ Sep 30, 2023 at 23:13
  • $\begingroup$ @BenjaminWang I think that I mean that tag. $\endgroup$
    – Daniel S
    Oct 1, 2023 at 8:54

1 Answer 1

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The anniversary being marked is:

100 years since the birth of the musical entertainer Donald Swann, one half of the comic duo Flanders and Swann. This occasion fell on 30 September 2023, the date this puzzle was published.

The five sets of three are as follows:

Group 1: Words that can be represented by the letter 'P' (or 'pee')
PARKING (on road signs and maps), PHOSPHORUS (in the Periodic Table), SOFTLY (in sheet music).

Group 2: Words that become another word when 'PO' is inserted
CORRAL → CORPORAL, PURSE → PURPOSE, TRAMLINE → TRAMPOLINE

Group 3: Words that can precede 'BELLY'
DELHI Belly, LEAD Belly, YELLOW Belly (a coward).

Group 4: Words that can follow 'BUM'
BumBAG, BumBLED, BumPER

Group 5: Artists (i.e. 'Draw-ers')
Albrecht DURER, William HOGARTH, Henri MATISSE.

Altogether, this gives us the clue phrase:

"Pee Po Belly Bum Drawers", often stylised as "P** P* B**** B** D******" - a song comparing the use of profanity among the intelligentsia to playground swearing. A video of the song can be seen on YouTube here.

As to why this puzzle is 'lanolin-enriched':

@fljx points out in comments that in the introduction to the Flanders and Swann song 'A Transport of Delight', Swann is jokily introduced as "the well-known pianist, composer, linguist, also contains lanolin, Donald Swann".

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    $\begingroup$ For the Lanolin link: youtu.be/0YWcaGgOG_8?t=32 $\endgroup$
    – fljx
    Oct 2, 2023 at 12:15
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    $\begingroup$ Or (the only transcript I can find including the intro) usuaris.tinet.cat/klunn/poems.html#bus $\endgroup$
    – fljx
    Oct 2, 2023 at 12:22
  • $\begingroup$ @fljx Aha, thank you! I've been scratching my head over that... $\endgroup$
    – Stiv
    Oct 2, 2023 at 12:43

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