NTSPP – 037 (Review) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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NTSPP – 037 (Review)

Not The Saturday Prize Puzzle – 037 (Review)

A Puzzle by Radler

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Radler’s puzzles can be at the tough end of the spectrum.  Having test solved the first draft of this puzzle; I found it easier than some of his previous crosswords, but by no means an “easy” crossword to solve.  It is difficult to judge how difficult your own crosswords are.  I think that Radler sometimes underestimates how difficult some of his clues are.  Having said this, the final version of the crossword is a lot more approachable with a good range of clues that give an entry into the puzzle.

There are some clues in the crossword that you will not usually see in the Daily Telegraph and where different setters and solvers have diverging opinions on their usage.  I have tried to indicate these fairly without judging their acceptability.

As always, you can reveal an answer by highlighting the word or words between the curly brackets.  Do let us have your comments on the puzzle as well.  It is always good for the setter to get feedback and acknowledgment of the hard work that has gone into creating the crossword.

Many thanks to Radler for the challenge this week.


8a Earth has snow deposit (4)
{CLAY} – A word meaning “earth” comes from a word sum.  Take an abbreviation for cocaine (snow) and add another word meaning deposit.

9a Parisian who has got around since as it were (5)
{QUASI} – The definition is well hidden in this clue.  It is “as it were”.  The solution comes from the French word for “who” (Parisian) around as word for since.

10a Over slow, can’t finish crossword? (4)
{DRAT} – The definition here is crossword, which you have to split as “cross word”.  Views differ on the acceptability of defining a word in this way.  As a minimum, the definition word must be pronounced the same in the split version and the combined version.  To find the answer, take a word for slow (as in late), remove the final letter (can’t finish) and reverse it (over).

11a Frenchman’s Mummy back with Daddy (6)
{AMPERE} – The definition as a famous French scientist.  Take a word meaning “Mummy” and reverse it (back) then add a word for “Daddy”.

12a Kitchen rubber shows result of curdling in blistering heat (3,5)
{TEA CLOTH} – The definition is a kitchen rubber (something used to rub things dry).  Take an anagram of “heat” (blistering) and including within it something that could be the result of curdling.

13a Powercut?  Pass candle round for drink (3,5)
{TAP WATER} – The definition is “drink”.  Take a word for candle and put this around a word for power from which the final letter has been removed (powercut!).  The wordplay here is similar to 10a although the device is used in the subsidiary indication rather than the definition.

16a Courier takes females in disguise (6)
{MUFFLE} – The definition is “disguise”.  Take a word meaning courier and include within it an abbreviation for female twice.  A common device for double letters is to take the abbreviation for the single letter and include it in the plural.

18a Bluff when caught by practical joke (4)
{CRAG} – A word for bluff (as in an outcrop of rock) is the definition.  Take a definition for caught and add this to another word for a practical joke (often used to describe a week of student fundraising).

20a Posed around with eastern redhead, a stunner (5)
{TASER} – The definition is a word for a stunner (something that may be used to stun.  Take a word for posed and reverse it (around).  Then take an abbreviation for eastern and the first letter of “redhead” (“red head”).  The use of words such as “Gateshead”, “Maidenhead”, “Redhead” to indicate the first letter of a word is frowned upon by some.

22a Ha! We left looney Bob perhaps (6)
{HAIRDO} – The definition is Bob (which is an example (perhaps) of the answer).  The word HA and add a word for looney from which the letters “we” have been removed.

23a Cavorting raised a laugh in the old country (8)
{RHODESIA} – The answer required is the name of an old country in Africa.  Take an anagram of raised (cavorting) in include a two letter word meaning laugh inside.

26a Impressions and more of the same depends on giving up drug (8)
{ETCHINGS} – The definition is a word meaning impressions.  To find it take a Latin abbreviation meaning more of the same and add a word meaning depends upon (as in turns one) from which a well known abbreviation for a drug has been removed.

29a eats in – Erodes polish off vice (4,2)
{EATS IN} – The definition is erodes.  Take a word meaning polish of (as in a meal) and add a word meaning vice.

31a Catch bug on Sunday (4)
{SNAG} – The definition is catch.  It comes from a word meaning bug (as in annoy) after (on) an abbreviation for Sunday.

32a Pole with blade caught in high definition and put away (5)
{HOARD} – The definition is put away (as in store).  Take a word describing a pole with a blade on the end and put it inside (caught in) an abbreviation for High Definition.

33a Watched closely as Radler had spoken (4)
{EYED} – A word meaning watched closely comes from a homophone (spoken) of what the setter would say if he had had something.


1d Manual treatment for old girl (6)
{ALUMNA} – A word meaning old girl (from a school or university) is derived from an anagram (treatment) of manual.

2d Character required by every other boy at sea (4)
{BYTE} – A word meaning character (in computer terms) is the definition.  Comes from taking alternate letters (every other) from the phrase “BoY aT sEa”.

3d Object about strict question about proof of mentality (2,4)
{IQ TEST} – The definition is something that you might take as proof of your mental abilities.  It comes from a word meaning object (as in a thing) around a word meaning strict and an abbreviation for question, the latter two being reversed (around) before being included in the answer.

4d Conducted Telemann’s overture for trumpet (4)
{RANT} – The definition is a word meaning trumpet (as in proclaiming something loudly).  It comes from a word meaning conducted with the first letter (overture) of Telemann.

5d Pacifist marshalls admirers (8)
{DISARMER} – The answer is a word for a pacifist.  It is an anagram (marshalls) of admirers.

6d Pin-up’s top dropped by pool (4)
{IDOL} – A word meaning pin-up comes from a word for a pool (of the swimming variety) that has its first letter moved from the top to the bottom (top dropped).

7d Shellfish’s underwater vessel (8)
{NAUTILUS} – Double definition time.  A word for a shellfish has the same name as an underwater vessel captained by Nemo.

14d One prosecuting for hazard (5)
{WAGER} – You wait half and hour for a double definition and then two turn up at once!   A slightly cryptic definition of one prosecuting has the same meaning as hazard (as in bet).

15d What goes up? Bible teacher does here! (5)
{RISER} – A water or other pipe or conduit that goes up through a building is the answer.  The wordplay requires us to take a definition of bible teacher (religious education master) and reverse it (also goes up as the wordplay links to the answer.

17d Be dishonest about character (5)
{FIBRE} – A word meaning character is a simple word sum of a word meaning be dishonest added to a word meaning about.

19d Chemical substance inducing a trance over time (8)
{REACTANT} – A chemical substance is the definition.  Take an anagram (inducing) of “a trance” and add a T (for time) on the end.

20, 21d Outback couple makes tempting choice (3,2,3,4)
{TWO IN THE BUSH} – Another double definition with both side cryptically defined!  A word that could describe a couple in the outback also alludes to the well known proverb about a tempting choice.  Personally, I think tempting choice is a little bit of a stretch as a cryptic definition although the NINA around the perimeter may give you a nudge in the right direction.

24d Go too far through work (6)
{OVERDO} – The answer is a word meaning go too far.  It is a word sum of a word meaning through (as in complete) and a word meaning work.

25d I shot those people in the same place (6)
{IBIDEM} – The answer is a Latin word meaning in the same place.  It comes from a word sum og I, a word for shot (as in an attempt) and an abbreviated form (which is in Chambers but is not often used) for them (those people).

27d Lofty said “hello” (4)
{HIGH} – The answer is a word for lofty.  It is a homophone of a word meaning hello.  A lsigh weakness in this clue is that the homophone indicator being in the middle means that it is difficult to know which side is the definition and which the wordplay but this one was so immediately obvious it was not an issue.

28d Professional player for GB (4)
{SHAW} – The surname of an actor who played in the TV series the professionals is the same as a famous author and playwright whose initials were GB.

30d Person who joins order (4)
{TIER} – A final double definition comes from a slightly oblique reference to a person who joins (things together) and a word for order (as in rank or arrangement).

For those looking for the NINA, the outside letters around the grid spell out {A BIRD IN THE HAND CATCHES THE WORM}.

Lots of good clues to chose favourites from this week.  20a and 22a were good but for simplicity and surface reading, 16a wins my clue of the crossword.

I will try and add some pictures later.  Looking at the answers most of them are abstract nouns or concepts so some lateral thinking will be required!