Imaginative drawing of Ben Franklin and his kite.
June 15, 1752: Benjamin Franklin’s kite flying experiment proves lightning and electricity are related. Maybe. The account of Franklin’s experiment wasn’t written down for another 15 years when the tale was placed into Joseph Priestley’s History and Present Status of Electricity. While the idea of old Ben standing out in a storm with a kite floating in the ominous sky, key attached, and the scientist in grave danger is pretty standard, if he did perform the experiment at all, he did not put himself in the path of danger. ~ Patricia Hysell, Go Fly a Kite!, Little Bits of History
Tuesday, March 4, 2014
Puzzle by Bruce Haight and Peter A. Collins
Edited by Will Shortz
In this clever Tuesday crossword black squares form a figure of a kite in the upper right corner with the tail (or string) running diagonally across the center of the grid, flanked by" lightning bolts" on either side of the string/tail. GO FLY / A KITE; BENJAMIN / FRANKLIN and DISCOVERING / ELECTRICITY complete the picture. The coy cross-referencing and scanty clues add up to “person associated with the scene depicted this puzzle’s grid, what that person is often credited with and advice given to him by someone.” A throw-in is FRANCE (37D. Site of 27-Across/32-Down’s ambassadorship) … OK.
Other —DR DOOM (1A. Archenemy of the Fantastic Four), DRESSING (3D. Order often “on the side”), IBERIAN (7D. Spanish or Portuguese); JA RULE (12A. Rapper with the 2002 #1 hit “Always on Time”), JELL-O (28D. Dessert brand once pitched by Bill Cosby), MARNE and YSER (9D and 57A. River of W.W. I); MISSTATE (54A. Say wrongly), OLD-TIMER (51A. Veteran), RAVISHED (2D. Enraptured); SENSEI (49A. Martial arts instructor).
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Puzzle available on the internet at
THE NEW YORK TIMES — Crossword Puzzles and Games.