Today’s crossword threw us for a little loop with the clue “Open grassland.” We had 4 of the 5 letters (_ELDT) and, for the life of us, could not figure out the first letter of the word. Luckily, we deduced that the answer to “End of a Shakespeare play” should be “ACT V,” thus giving us the V for veldt!
Turns out that Veldt (also commonly spelled Veld) refers primarily (but not exclusively) to the wide open rural spaces of South Africa or southern Africa and in particular to certain flatter areas or districts covered in grass or low scrub. The word veld (velt in Middle High German, and feld in Old High German) is preserved also in the Afrikaans and Dutch, literally meaning ‘field’. Veldt can also be likened to “prairie,” “outback,” or my personal favorite: “boondocks.”
For our musically inclined readers, you might know of an English band called The Veldt.
Any video gamers out there might recall in the video game Final Fantasy VI, the Veldt is a large flatland in which the characters can fight most previously encountered enemies.