NTSPP – 193 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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NTSPP – 193

NTSPP – 193

A Puzzle by Radler

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NTSPP - 193

The puzzle is available by clicking on the above grid.

A review of this puzzle by Prolixic follows.

Many thanks to Radler for our lunchtime entertainment this week.  A relatively accessible Radler crossword with the exception of 17d where cluing a very unusual word cryptically did little to assist the solver!


1a Mother and son taking time for questions (7)
{MATTERS} – A five letter Latin word for mother and the abbreviation for son go around (taking) the abbreviation for time.

5a Difficult day at the end of a week’s struggle (7)
{AWKWARD} – The A from the clue followed by the abbreviation for week and a word for a struggle or fight.  This is followed by (at the end) the abbreviation for day.

9a Established audio newspaper in Germany (5)
{BUILT} – A homophone (audio) of BILD (a German newspaper)

10a A new way to claim Reykjavik’s capital of polar region? (9)
{ANTARCTIC} – The A from the clue, the abbreviation for new and a word meaning way or strategy go around (claim) the first letter (capital) of Reykjavik.

11a Yank to block Welshman providing on-line storage facility (7,3)
{LUGGAGE VAN} – … a facility that runs on railway lines.  A word meaning to yank or pull is followed by word meaning to block, choke or stifle and the name of a Welshman.

12a Watch TV (first instalment only), then stop (4)
{TEND} – The first letter of TV (first instalment only) followed by a word meaning stop.

14a Flush with excitement, initiating Hello Lovely chat up line (4,3,5)
{PULL THE CHAIN} – An anagram (with excitement) of H L CHAT UP LINE.  The H and L comes from the first letter (initiating) of Hello Lovely.

18a Unusually quaint limits managed, in grand scheme to reduce infection (12)
{QUARANTINING} – An anagram (unusually) of QUAINT goes around (limits) a word meaning managed.  This is followed by the IN from the clue and the abbreviation for grand.

21a My word is right (1,3)
{I SAY} – The IS from the clue followed by a two letter word meaning right or OK.

22a Empty H2O, a treatment with nothing in it (10)
{HOMEOPATHY} – An anagram (treatment) of EMPTY HHO with an O (nothing) inserted.  As a whole cryptic definition of a form of alternative medicine that involves the dilution of a substance to such a degree that there is virtually no possibility of the original substance being in any one portion of the resulting solution.  A bit like putting a black marble in a bag of ten million white marbles, pulling out a cup of marbles and believing that the black marble is in the cup!

25a Fiddle with finger (9)
{PIZZICATO} – How you play the violin (fiddle) with your finger.

26a Say angrily, “get knotted!” (5)
{SNARL} – A double definition.

27a Army officer in affair, a lot of bother after nest exposed (7)
{DREYFUS} – a cause celebre in France.  The word for a squirrel’s nest is followed a word meaning bother with the final letter removed (a lot of).

28a Earl stays out injecting Charlie (slang for drug) (7)
{ECSTASY} – An anagram (out) of E STAY (E from Earl) with the abbreviation for Charlie or Cocaine included (injecting).


1d Caller’s instant irritability (6)
{MOBILE} – … or what you use to make the call.  A two letter word for instant followed by a word indicating irritability.

2d Pinch Pollux or Castor? (Pair from Gemini) (6)
{TWINGE} – A word describing what Castor or Pollux were in their relationship to one another followed by the first two letters (pair from) Gemini.  Castor and Pollox are also two of the stars in the constellation of Gemini.

3d Old art-form, painting without boundaries (10)
{EXTRAMURAL} – A two letter word meaning old followed by an anagram (form) of ART and a word for a painting on a wall.

4d Universal tears but gracious (5)
{SUAVE} – The abbreviation for universal goes inside (tears) a word meaning but.

5d A woolly hat ranks as a kind of fur (9)
{ASTRAKHAN} – The A from the clue followed by an anagram (woolly) of HAT RANKS

6d Mini car right between two Fords (4)
{KART} – The abbreviation for right goes between two model names of Ford cars, the first modern and the second old.

7d Location of  Brief Encounter? (2,3,3)
{AT THE BAR} – A cryptic definition of where you might find your brief or barrister.

8d Act ended as another production abandoned (8)
{DECADENT} – An anagram (as another production) of ACT ENDED.

13d Shot multiple times, criminal happens to be wearing odd socks (10)
{SCHNAPPSES} – … multiple shots of a type of German spirit.  An anagram (criminal) of HAPPENS includes (wearing) the odd letters of SoCkS.

5d Tortillas prepared in coastal regions (9)
{LITORALS} – An anagram (prepared) of TORTILLAS.

16d Set up and delivered witty riposte via Twitter perhaps? (8)
{EQUIPPED} – Split 1-7 this would indicate making a witty response on-line (via Twitter perhaps).

17d Art form in lower region? (8)
{VAJAZZLE} – It does exactly what it says on the tin!  An almost straight definition of a type of body decoration around the pubic region of a woman.  Congratulations to anyone who got this answer (figuratively not literally)!  It is also anothe word for a valley (lower region) around a musical art form.

19d American loose women switching beds (6)
{STRATA} – Reverse (switching) an abbreviation for American and a word for loose women.

20d Young man wanting love and fun, a bit of action on the side (2-4)
{BY PLAY} – Remove (wanting) the abbreviation for love from a word for a young man and follow this with a word meaning fun.

23d Stewart divides last slices of the apple crumble (5)
{ERODE} – The first name of the singer Mr Stewart goes inside (divides) the last letters (slices of) thE and applE.

24d Pound off; I bought over 40% (4)
{BIFF} – The answer is hidden and reversed (over) as 40% of the letters of OFF I BOUGHT

24 comments on “NTSPP – 193

  1. Thanks to Radler for a really entertaining puzzle. My favourite clues were 7d and 20d. I’m looking forward to the illustration for 17d.

  2. A bit stuck here – 17d is one of the many answers that I can’t get but at least I think I can assume it’s going to be something rude! :roll:

    1. The review will be up in a very short while. 17d is a cryptic definition of a form of bodily artwork around a lady’s pubic regions! Gazza has drowned after sobbing his eyes out that he would not get to illustrate this clue!

      1. Thanks – will wait for review as I think this is a word I don’t know – quite glad about that really. Sorry gazza drowned!

        1. I’d actually meant 17d as an all-in-one clue, a (musical) art form within a word for valley or lower region. (I don’t know whether that is any help, Kath?)
          Similarly, 22a is an anagram (treatment) of EMPTY HHO with O in it.

          1. Thank you – I would never have got either of those but I enjoyed what I could do of your crossword. I do think they are at the top end for difficulty of the NTSPP’s – not a criticism at all – just a comment.

  3. I thought Radler had gone all soft on us when I had four read and write in clues, but having been lulled into a sense of false security he put the boot in.

    What I could do (about two thirds) was tricky but clever.

    The rest were well explained in the review, thank you Prolixic.

    Thanks to Radler for providing my afternoons diversion on a miserable wet day.

    Vawhatnot… Not a hope of getting that.

  4. I’m afraid 17d stumped me I must be getting too old however Mrs P knew what it meant. Good puzzle today favourites were 4d 14a and 27a thanks to Radler and to Prolixic for the dissection.

        1. Enough already. Some of us may have a slight headache and mental images like those last two are definitely not required.

  5. Being the well brought up people that we are, of course we had to seek electronic help for 17d. Needing the J for the pangram helped too. The mind boggles!. Challenging, but we got there. Really entertaining for us.
    Thanks Radler and Prolixic.

  6. I battled with this one ALL day and eventually managed to complete about 2/3rds. Not too bad for me with a Radler puzzle. I do find him very tricky.
    I would NEVER have got 17d although I could see the direction in which we were going . . .
    15d had to be what it was even if I couldn’t find the plural anywhere and I think there’s a bit of a blip in the answer inside the curly bits.
    Lots of others I would never have got too.
    This has kept me occupied, mystified, and generally out of trouble for a very long time on a grey and generally gloomy day so thank you very much to Radler and Prolixic.

    1. That wasn’t meant to be all in very black letters – do hope that’s not another internet faux pas like using capitals!

  7. Thanks Radler occupied a large part of the time between the finish of the West Ham game and Match of the Day ! Only got the last needless to say 17 d by cheating !
    Favourite for me in an almighty struggle was actually 1d .
    Thanks Also to Prolixic for explaining the clues to those I had entered on the definition

  8. Radler is always far too tough for me! But I liked 7d! :smile:

    Presumably, the picture for 10a has been censored?

  9. Thank you all for the comments. It’s always helpful to receive feedback and I’m very pleased you enjoyed the puzzle.
    Thank you too to Prolixic for the review. (I do hope you didn’t spend too long searching for the illustration for 17d.)

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