NTSPP – 040 (Review) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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NTSPP – 040 (Review)

Not The Saturday Prize Puzzle – 040

A puzzle by Bufo

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – + – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

A highly enjoyable puzzle from Bufo this week with a special message around the perimeter for Tilsit who is recovering from major surgery.  For those who want to read the message it is:


All of us endorse the message and it is good to hear Tilsit sounding so lively on his blog.

The puzzle itself contained several new words for me though with all credit to Bufo, the more unusual words were clearly clued.  A lot of the clues included charades though as these were combined with other wordplay elements, the puzzle did not feel unbalanced.


8a You almost get along somehow with a person from West Africa (6)
{YORUBA} – A person from West Africa is found from taking the first two letters of “You” (almost) adding a word meaning “get along somehow” and a final letter “a”.

9a Road-hog taking a spin round the middle of Leipzig. This might tell you how far he goes (8)
{ODOGRAPH} – A device for measuring the distance travelled comes from an anagram (taking a spin) of “road-hog p”, the “p” being the middle letter in “Leipzig”.

10a Where to play a suitable arrangement and what to play it on? (8)
{RECORDER} – double definition.  A musical instrument beloved of primary school children and an instrument of torture for their parents is also a charade of a place to play (as in an abbreviation for a recreational area) plus a word for a suitable arrangement.

11a Exercise control over employee’s time (6)
{MANAGE} – A word meaning to exercise control over comes from a charade of words meaning employee and time.  The “‘s” in the clue indicates “has” as the charade indicator.

12a An advantage possessed by landed gentry (4)
{EDGE} – A word meaning an advantage is hidden (possessed by) inside “landed gentry”

13a Nearly all pharmacists are pseudoscientists (10)
{ALCHEMISTS} – A word for pseudoscientists comes from the first two letters (nearly) of “all” plus another word for pharmacists.

15a System of philosophy that might have arisen from Nevada town principally (7)
{VEDANTA} – A system of philosophy is an anagram (might have arisen from) “NEVADA T”, the “T” coming from the first letter (principally) of “town”.

17a English battalion finally start to follow retreating enemy and force surrender (7)
{ENFEOFF} – A new word for my vocabulary here.  A ancient word meaning surrender comes from a charade of “E” (English), the last letter (finally) of battalion, the first letter (start to) of follow, a word meaning enemy reversed (retreating) and a final “F” for force.  To get five elements of wordplay in a short sentence is brilliant setting.

20a E.g. erosions involved in the formation of mountains (10)
{OROGENESIS} – Another new word for me.  A word meaning the process of the formation of mountains is an anagram (involved) of “EG EROSIONS”.  The crossing letters helped find this anagram and a quick check in Chambers confirmed that I had the right word.

22a Singer having nasal tone to some degree (4)
{ALTO} – A singer who sings one of the parts in a choir is hidden inside (to some degree) “nasal tone”.

23a Food for an important person? (6)
{CHEESE} – A type of dairy food might also, when combined with the word “big” describe an important person.  A slight niggle is at although I got this word easily from the checking letters, “cheese” on its own is not an important person.

25a Party man possibly changes sides and becomes an ultra-republican (8)
{LEVELLER} – An ultra-republican, who considers all people of equal rank, comes from another word for a party goer with the initial letter changed from “R” to “L” (changes sides).

26a A legal right to relieve people with first sign of tension (8)
{EASEMENT} – This legal right (which would describe a right of way), comes from a charade of a word meaning to relieve, a word for people and a final “T” (first sign of tension).

27a Girl found confused in the middle of Bangladesh (6)
{GLENDA} – The name of a girl is an anagram (confused) of the central six letters in the word “Bangladesh”.


1d Very lazy individual put in offer before the French (4,4)
{BONE IDLE} – A word meaning very laze comes from a word meaning “offer” (in the sense of what you might do at an auction) with a word meaning “individual” inside followed by the French masculine definite article.

2d Here you’ll find Spain, the Ukraine, Romania, and Peru. Or maybe not Peru (6)
{EUROPE} – The continent where you would find the first three countries in the clue (but not the fourth) comes from a charade of the International codes for Spain, Ukraine, Romania and Peru.

3d Bird shows skill in following deviant sexual practice (4,6)
{SAND MARTIN} – This bird comes from an abbreviation for sadomasochism (deviant sexual practice) followed by a word meaning “skill” and a final “in”.

4d High-flier’s period of service with a company (7)
{TOURACO} – This African bird (high-flier) comes from a word meaning a period of service (as in a **** of duty) followed by an “a” and the abbreviation for a company.

5d Rook seen in overturned pile of hay getting something it can eat (4)
{WORM} – Something that a Rook might eat is found from a word for a pile of hay reversed (overturned) with the abbreviation for a “rook” (as in a chess piece) inside.

6d TV detective, a former cavalryman (8)
{IRONSIDE} – This eponymous detective played by Raymond Burr in the 1967 – 1975 TV series shares a name with a cavalryman in Oliver Cromwell’s army.

7d Plug small crack in mine shaft (6)
{SPIGOT} – This plug which may found in a barrel of beer for example comes from a charade of an abbreviation for small and a word for a crack (as is a try) inside another word for a mine shaft.

ARVE Error: need id and provider

14d Dean shocked by wild 50’s pop star (4,6)
{EDNA SAVAGE} – This 1950’s pop star is an anagram (shocked) of “Dean” followed by a word meaning wild.  Your reviewer is a little too young to remember her but I am sure that those commemorating anniversaries this weekend will have no problem recalling her.

16d Fish definitely on the up in one part of Wales (8)
{ANGLESEY} – This part of Wales comes from a word meaning to fish followed by an affirmation (definitely) that has been reversed (on the up).

18d Overweight bosses could be fools (8)
{FATHEADS} – A word for fools comes from a simple charade of a word meaning “Overweight” followed by a word for “bosses”.

19d Ostracise one that’s extremely unpunctual (7)
{ISOLATE} – A word meaning to ostracise or cut off comes from a charade of plus a word for “extremely” plus a word for “unpunctual”.

21d Again listen to dry run once Sarah has left (6)
{REHEAR} – A word meaning again listen (as in a retrial perhaps) comes from a word meaning “dry run” as actors may do before a performance from which an affection name for Sarah has been removed.  I was not too sure about the use of the word “to” as the link word.

22d Snake having gobbled fish up is dead to the world (6)
{ASLEEP} – A word meaning “dead to the world” comes from a type of snake within which (gobbled up) has been put a word for a slippery fish reversed (up).

24d You might say I had observed closely (4)
{EYED} – A word meaning observed closely is a homophone (you might say) of a contraction of “I had”.

2 comments on “NTSPP – 040 (Review)

  1. Sound clues (13ac was my favourite) with additional interest and help provided by the words around the perimeter. Many thanks to Bufo for the puzzle and to Prolixic for the blog.
    I wish Tilsit all the very best as he recuperates and I’m particularly pleased to hear that that the operation went so well.

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