Colin Dexter's protagonist was Detective Chief Inspector (Endeavour) Morse, in many novels and the TV series where he was played by John Thaw. Morse was named after the polymath crossword puzzle enthusiast Sir Jeremy Morse, on the back of whose authoritative chess tome Chess Problems: Tasks & Records it is written: "In his spare time he has pursued a career in banking, which included the Chairmanship of Lloyds Bank from 1977 to 1993."

But sidekick Sgt Lewis (played by Kevin Whateley in Morse and later in his own TV series) was named after another rival clue-setter, Mrs B. Lewis. Is anything more known about Mrs Lewis' life and accomplishments?

See the article Inspector Morse on Wikipedia.

1 Answer 1


“Mrs B. Lewis” was the pseudonym used by Dorothy Taylor (1911–2009) for entering crossword competitions:

Dorothy used to enter competitions under the pseudonym Mrs B Lewis, which was the maiden name of her sister-in-law. One of her fellow crossword compilers and solvers was Colin Dexter, the author of the Inspector Morse detective novels, and when he came to name the characters in his books he often drew on the names of his crossword colleagues. Dorothy was one of his favourite compilers and he named Morse’s Sergeant Lewis after her.

David Taylor (2009). Obituary for Dorothy Taylor. The Guardian, Sunday 9th August 2009.

Dorothy Taylor compiled the "Everyman" crossword in The Observer from 1963 to 1993. The Observer is weekly, and she alternated with co-compiler Alec Robins, so that she set about 780 crosswords for the newspaper.

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