NTSPP – 195

NTSPP – 195

A Puzzle by Wiglaf

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

NTSPP - 195

The puzzle is available by clicking on the above grid.

A review of this puzzle by Prolixic follows.



1a The fellow has party on American air transport (7)
{HELIBUS} – A pronoun meaning “the fellow” followed by the abbreviation of an old political party and an abbreviation for American.

5a Sailor remains in Cornish town (7)
{SALTASH} – A four letter word for a sailor followed by another word for burnt remains.

9a Curiosity? Did it kill the cat? (5)
{ROVER} – Curiosity is the name of one of this type of space exploration vehicle.  As the name of an animal, it might be something that killed a cat.

10a Remind a campanologist perhaps to do this? (4,1,4)
{RING A BELL} – What a campanologist will do is also a phrase meaning to remind.

11a Isn’t bishop wearing covering in this military game? (9)
{PAINTBALL} – … a game where you dress up in combat gear and shoot people.  Another common way of saying isn’t followed by an abbreviation for bishop goes inside (wearing) a word for a covering that goes over a coffin.

12a 16 loses nothing in being stylish (4)
{CHIC} – One of the comedy brothers without an O (loses nothing).

15a Drone intercepts a nun doing the rounds? That’s brutal (7)
{UNHUMAN} – Another word for drone goes inside (intercepts) an anagram (doing the rounds) of A NUN.

17a Gay chap is awfully soft-hearted (7)
{SAPPHIC} – A P (for soft) goes in the middle of an anagram (awfully) of CHAP IS.

19a It’s like being a tormented soul for a spell (7)
{CANTRIP} –  A tormented soul “cannot rest in peace”!  Shorten the words in quotes to get a Scottish word for a magical spell.

21a Level of excellence that’s seen in shooters? (7)
{CALIBRE} – A word describing the barrel measurement of a gun is also a word that describes a level of excellence.

22a Pretentious person quietly leaving (4)
{ARTY} – Remove the P (quietly leaving) from a word for a person (used to describe a litigant or person accused in court).

24a Female punk trio clashing with German student about the basics? (4,5)
{RIOT GRRRL} – An anagram (clashing) of TRIO followed by the abbreviation for German and an abbreviation for a student or learning inside which (about) you add three letters representing the three basic subjects at school.

28a Fire! Act to curb temperature (9)
{STIMULATE} – A word meaning to act goes around (to curb) an abbreviation for temperature.

29a Harnessed animals needing H2O, first to last (5)
{TEAMS} – Take a word for water (H2O) in its gaseous form and move the first letter to the end.

30a Creeps stripped duly – without uniform – without anything (7)
{NAKEDLY} – A word for creeps loses its first and last letters (stripped) and is followed by DULY without the U (uniform).

31a Couple study article showing parts of intestines (7)
{DUODENA} – A word for a couple followed by a word for a room that is also referred to as a study and an article.


1d 16 discarded old instrument (4)
{HARP} – Another one of the comedy brothers without an O (discards old).

2d A gigantic beast in the lava flow (9)
{LEVIATHAN} – An anagram (flow) of IN THE LAVA.

3d James J’s partner upset a magnate (5)
{BARON} – James Joyce (of Ulysses fame) married Nora Barnacle.  Reverse (upset Nora B) Congratulations to anyone who solved the wordplay without intensive research on Google.

4d Business magnate ultimately failing to prohibit this type of calculating aid (7)
{SOROBAN} – Remove the last letter (ultimately failing) from George Soros (business magnate) and follow this with a word meaning prohibit.

5d Recordings made by Carol Leslie (7)
{SINGLES} – A word meaning to carol followed by the diminutive form of the name Leslie.

6d What makes you think of bread? (4)
{LOAF} – Another word for the brain (what make you think) could be followed by “of bread” when you buy bread from the bakers or supermarket.

7d The beginning of female philosophy (5)
{ALEPH} – The beginning of the Hebrew alphabet is hidden inside (of) FEMALE PHILOSOPY

8d Caught old Charlie, presumably ill-prepared (10)
{HALFCOCKED} – The abbreviations for caught, old and Charlie give COC.  Create a clue that would indicate the first part of a word beginning COC to give a word meaning ill-prepared.

13d 3’s syndrome? (10)
{MUNCHAUSEN} – The medical syndrome that begins with the answer to 3d.

14d Gemstone from round China (4)
{OPAL} – A O (round) followed by another word for china or a mate (china plate).

16d Karl is correcting student’s work in the auditorium (4)
{MARX} – The political Karl’s surname is a homophone (in the auditorium) of the action of correcting student’s works.

18d Breathe in, relax and sleep (9)
{HIBERNATE} – An anagram (relax) of BREATH IN.

20d Simple prudish girl appearing topless (7)
{PRIMARY} – Another word for prudish followed by a girl’s name with the first letter removed (topless).

21d Rascal pinches the one part needed for vessel (7)
{CATHEAD} – A three letter word for a rascal includes (pinches) the THE from the clue and a A (one).

23d IBM device is suspect (5)
{THINK} – IBM’s motto or strapline (device) is another word for suspect or use your 6d.

25d A tiro working nine-to-five? (5)
{RATIO} – A anagram (working) of A TIRO gives a word of which 9/5 or nine to five is an example.

26d Irrational being on French coin of yesteryear (4)
{SURD} – The French for ON followed by the old abbreviation for pence.  The answer is any mathematical expression such as a square root, cube root or higher root which cannot be written as a simple fraction.

27d Eastern region invaded by Vespasian? Just the reverse (4)
{ASIA} – The answer is hidden inside VESPASIAN.





  1. gazza
    Posted November 2, 2013 at 1:31 pm | Permalink

    Crikey! Wiglaf must have been on the hard stuff. I thought that this was the trickiest NTSPP we’ve had for ages, but very enjoyable. My favourite clues were 8d (excellent) and 18d.

  2. crypticsue
    Posted November 2, 2013 at 1:45 pm | Permalink

    Such a comfort to find that Gazza found this tricky too. I liked 9a best.
    Thanks to WIglaf and, in advance, to Prolixic

  3. Kath
    Posted November 2, 2013 at 4:32 pm | Permalink

    Oh good – I thought it was me but I’ve cheered up now that I know gazza and CS thought it was tricky. I’ve only done about half and haven’t looked at hints yet. Now that I know it’s not just me I’ll ‘perservate’ for a bit longer. Can’t do MPP either. :sad:

  4. Colmce
    Posted November 2, 2013 at 4:39 pm | Permalink

    I’m with you Kath! lots of obscure knowledge, and a lot of clues over convoluted for my taste.

    Back to the MPP, but current progress would indicate I’m not in line for a prize.:-(

    • Kath
      Posted November 2, 2013 at 5:10 pm | Permalink

      My current progress on the MPP is precisely two answers! Just not my day!!

      • crypticsue
        Posted November 2, 2013 at 5:19 pm | Permalink

        What I do when I see a puzzle that says ‘across clues are not defined’ or something like that, is to concentrate on the down clues. This should give you checking letters which help you work out what is going on with the across clues.

        • Kath
          Posted November 2, 2013 at 6:05 pm | Permalink

          Yes – but I can’t even get far enough with the down clues to get anywhere . . .

      • stanXYZ
        Posted November 2, 2013 at 5:24 pm | Permalink

        Finished the MPP but the answer still eludes me!

        Bye Bye!!!


        • stanXYZ
          Posted November 3, 2013 at 3:36 pm | Permalink

          Blimey! What a struggle!

          Gave up with about a third unsolved … but having read the review from Prolixiic I’m glad that I didn’t continue the struggle! Lots of things I’ve never heard of in the past and most probably will never come across in the future! Thanks to Wiglaf & Prolixic!

          (Wot! No emoticon for a man wiping the sweat from his brow?)

  5. Kath
    Posted November 2, 2013 at 6:04 pm | Permalink

    I enjoyed what I managed of this crossword – about three quarters. I was defeated by most of the bottom left corner and a few others too.
    There were lots of things that I didn’t know and would never have managed to get – too many to put them all down.
    I liked 5 and 17a and 5 and 6d. My favourite was 18d.
    With thanks to Wiglaf and Prolixic.