Creativity

READERS HAVE now collected some new collective nouns... A shelf of spinsters (Jennifer Moore-Blunt); a doorstep of journalists (T.M. O'Grady); a cadabra of conjurors (Norah Smith); a Plathora of poets (Peter Thomas); a fauna of sycophants (Bruce Birchall); a quota of plagiarists (J.R. Gore); a jostle of joggers (Joan Vinnicombe); a seethe of rail travellers (Maguy Higgs); a bray of vicars (John Andrews); a carton of Sydneys (Susan Tomes).

A rustle of horse-thieves (Octavia Leigh); a shirtlessness of racehorses (Paul Turner); a protestation of fox-lovers (Sue Johnson); a concatenation of cat-lovers (Colin O'Hare); a posse of pussies (S.J.); a Caribbean of caribou (B.B.); a humph of sceptics (Luela Palmer); an mmmm of doctors, an aaaah of dentists (Eric Dunkley); a bah bah de doo of jazz singers (Alex).

A lather of TV soaps (Andrew Duncan); a moon of cheeses (Eric Bridgstock); an indifference of waiters (John O'Byrne); an obstruction of bureaucrats (A.D.); a hamper of Planning Officers, a folly of architects (Pe.T.); a junket of MEPs (J.A.); a trough of EU commissioners (John Terris); a grouse of curmudgeons (Brendan J. O'Byrne); a conglumeration of depressives (Colin Archer); a detachment of the autistic (S.T.); a dearth of absentees (M.H.).

A One-I-Made-Earlier of TV cooks, a wife's-away of adult videos (Pa.T.); a gwynne of oranges, a labyrinth of maize (Mike Gifford); a parthenon of columnists (B.J.O'B.); a perplexity of togas (B.B.); a slither of salesmen, a bumshow of builders (Tom Gaunt); a horde of misers (M.H.); a nerd of Trekkies (Martin Brown); a whipround of masochists (C.A.); a gobble of gourmands (J.V.); a snip of castrati (J.T.).

A plummet of sky-divers (Pe.T.); a plunge of deep-sea divers (P. Catton); a cast of plasterers, a shop of informers (Alan Brooker); a culture of bacteriologists (Mary Brooker); a quiescence of yes-men (Matthew White); a corps of applegrowers, a breadth of visionaries (George H. Hudd).

A portmanteau of harbourmasters, a contentment of campers (C.O'H.); an irritation of e-mails (Michael Bryant-Mole); an annoyance of bunched-up buses (A.D.); an aggravation of cold callers, a vexation of double-glazing reps (Shirley Edmundson); a drive-you-potty of political candidates, a Go Yahweh! of Jehovah's Witnesses (Ella O'Key).

Jennifer Moore-Blunt, Luela Palmer and George Hudd each win a copy of the Chambers Dictionary of Quotations. John Lamper wonders: with chess now to be classified as a sport, what misdemeanours might lead to a red card in various mind games? Ideas to Loki. e-mail: Valhalla@btinternet.com. Or write to Creativity, Features, The Independent, 1 Canada Square, London E14 5DL, closing date 22 April.

Results and three more Chambers prizes will be announced on 27 April. Next week's tester: appropriate forms of transport.

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