Filling the Gaps

The story behind some of the people, places and events used in Lovatts crosswords…

Dr Jekyll

Very few people realise that the story of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde was based on a true story.

Robert Louis Stevenson based his story on William Brodie, a respected Scottish businessman.

Born in 1741, Brodie was the son of a well-to-do cabinetmaker. He was a city councillor leader of the mason’s guild and yet he [more…]


In Greek mythology Eros is the son of Aphrodite and Ares. His name means ‘sexual love’ and he is most commonly depicted as a chubby baby holding a bow and arrow.

Eros was originally pictured as an athletic youth and then as a young boy. The image of this god of love as a baby [more…]

Friday the 13th

We all know about Friday the 13th — it is supposed to be a day of bad luck, doom and danger. The question is, why a Friday and why Friday the 13th?

It may surprise you but there are millions of people around the world suffer from Triskaidekaphobia, which is the fear of the number [more…]

Marco Polo

Most people have heard of the explorer Marco Polo but do you know much about him?

This Italian traveller journeyed to the Far East with his merchant father Nicolo and uncle Maffeo in 1271, when he was 17 years old.

They crossed Persia to the Chinese border, went on through the Hindu Kush and the Pamir [more…]

Mata Hari

Margaretha Geertruida Zella was a Dutch dancer who deserted her Dutch Army officer husband in pursuit of fame and fortune.

She fled to France where she became a courtesan and oriental dancer in Paris. To complete the transition into this new life, she adopted the intriguing oriental name Mata Hari which means Eye of the [more…]

Sitting Bull

Sitting Bull was chief of the Sioux during the torrid period of American History following the American Civil War.

There were constant skirmishes and battles over land rights as white settlers moved onto land owned by Native Americans.

Chief Sitting Bull led his people in a campaign of resistance against the push to have them [more…]

Saint Patrick

Patrick is the patron Saint of Ireland. Renowned for ridding the island of serpents, he had a fascinating life!

Maewyn Succat was born in Scotland to Calphurnius and Conchessa in 387 AD. He was kidnapped by Irish marauders and sold as a slave to a chieftain in County Antrim in Ireland. He acquired his [more…]

Taj Mahal

In 1612, Arjumand Banu became the wife of Shah Jahan, which was the beginning of one of the most famous love stories of all time. Arjamad was known as Mumtaz Mahal or beloved of the palace.

Mumtaz and Jahan were inseparable and together they had 14 children. They were very popular with the people and [more…]

The Oscars

When you think of the Silver Screen, you think of the Academy Awards and their symbol, the statuette, OSCAR. But how did this figure come about and where did he get his name? 

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences was established in 1927 and a dinner was held to discuss ways of honouring [more…]