MPP 030 – Review – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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MPP 030 – Review

Monthly Prize Puzzle – 030

November 2014

Missing Link by Prolixic

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

Despite BD reminding people to read the instructions very carefully, over 60% of the entries had an incorrect answer to this month’s ‘question’:  “Seven answers (clued normally) form a series from which a name is missing. Solvers should provide the missing name”. The series was, of course, English royal dynasties and the missing one was SAXE-COBURG-GOTHA – the correct entry drawn out of the electronic ‘hat’ came from someone well known to fans of Rookie Corner – Beet.    Congratulations to her, she wins a choice of Telegraph puzzle books published by Hamlyn.


Incidentally, if it wasn’t pointed it out to you, would you have noticed that no anagrams were rearranged in the process of setting/solving this crossword?   No? Me neither!



1a           Form of low life subject to evolution (11)
UNDERGROWTH – Under (subject to) GROWTH (evolution)

7a           Held men fleeing from revolution (3)
BIT –   Remove OR (Ordinary Ranks of soldiers, men) from ORBIT (revolution).

9a           Fibre brought back from Douglas Island (5)
SISAL is hidden and reversed (brought back) in DougLAS ISland.

10a         Cavalryman carries a good man into plane (9)
LANCASTER –  Insert A (from the clue) and ST (saint, good man) into LANCER (cavalryman).


11a         Plots charge with Home Secretary after setback of arrest (3,6)
BAR GRAPHS   – Reverse (set back) GRAB (arrest) and then follow with RAP (charge) and HS (the abbreviation for Home Secretary.

bar graph

12a         Heartless instructor strangles duke in house (5)
TUDOR –   Remove the T at the middle of TUTOR (heartless instructor) and replace it with a D for Duke.

13a         The foreign insult about Labour leader is clear (7)
LEGIBLE – LE (the French [foreign] word for the) and GIBE (insult) with L (Labour leader) inserted.

15a         Cut a channel in short path (4)
ROUT –   Remove the last letter (short) from a ROUTE (path).

18a         What may be yellow changes hands in city (4)
YORK –   A YOLK is yellow – change the L (left hand) for a R (right hand) to get the city and one of the themed solutions.

20a         Chinese people finished in London square (7)
HANOVER –   HAN (Chinese dynasty) and OVER (finished)

23a         Fish barrel next to gutted fleet (5)
TUNNY –   TUN (barrel) and NavY – gutted tells you to remove the middle letters from the fleet.

24a         Articles written by healer in state church (9)
CATHEDRAL –   Insert into the abbreviation for the State of California, A and THE (articles) and DR (doctor, healer).


26a         Bold musical covering Hair returns without second tenor (9)
ASSERTIVE   –   The musical EVITA covers TRESS (hair) but you have to lose the T from Tress before you reverse the resulting letters as instructed by the ‘returns without second Tenor’.

27a         Train characters returning from another universe (5)
INURE – Hidden and reversed in anothER UNIverse.

28a         Film I love in extended version (3)
TEN –   Express I O (I love) as a word rather than a number (in extended version).


29a         Works with a man to house European leader (11)
PLANTAGENET –   PLANT (works) A (from the clue) and GENT (man) with the ‘leader’ of Europe inserted.

1d           Without it a French caption is coarse (8)
UNSUBTLE –   Remove the IT from UN (a in French) and SUBTITLE (caption).

2d           Pretty girl teases cleaners (8)
DISHRAGS –   DISH (pretty girl) and RAGS (teases).

3d           Head of state maybe healthier after heart transplant (5)
RULER – Change the D in the middle of RUDER (in robust health) for an L.

4d           Erecting trellis without one leads to setback (7)
REPLAPSE –   Remove the I (without one) from ESPALIER (trellis) and reverse (erecting) the remaining letters.

5d           Gain honour with queen in her home town? (7)
WINDSOR – WIN (gain) DSO (honour, – Distinguished Service Order) and R (Regina, queen).

6d           Discover convert welcoming bishop with ill feeling? (9)
HEARTBURN – HEAR (discover) and TURN (convert) the latter ‘welcoming’ B for bishop.


7d           Happen to live with tenor (6)
BETIDE –   BE (live ) and TIDE (tenor here meaning general run or course).

8d           Bullfighter involved in store romance (6)
TORERO – Hidden (involved in) sTORE ROmance.

14d         Error by revolutionary group making explosive device? (5,4)
BOOBY TRAP   –   BOOB (error)  followed by a reversal (revolutionary) of PARTY (group).

boobytrapYes, I know it looks like Pooh having a picnic, but Google Images insist it is a booby trap!

16d         Squash detailed proposal on Norway (8)
OVERTURN –   OVERTURE (detailed instructing you to remove the last letter) followed by N (the IVR code for Norway).

17d         Funniest toy is in France around the end of October (8)
DROLLEST –   DOLL (toy) with the end of October inserted and then followed by EST (‘is’ in French).

19d         Spirit of Kelvin’s American friend (7)
KACHINA – An ancestral spirit of the Pueblo peoples of North America.   K (the abbreviation for Kelvin, an SI base unit). A (American) and CHINA (cockney rhyming slang for a friend).

20d         Prophet touring Troy sits on the throne? (3,4)
HOT SEAT –   HOSEA (the Old Testament prophet) goes round T (Troy weight) and the result finished with T (a dialect form of the).

hot seat

21d         Little mouse (6)
STUART –   The mouse hero of the children’s film – Stuart Little.

22d         Agreement with a child of the educational system?! (6)
UNISON –   A UNI SON (son of the educational system).

25d         Supplementing on-line 3D? (5)
EKING –   Split the solution 1-4 and you’d have a way of describing an on-line 3D.

Thank you to Prolixic once again for another great prize puzzle – his fans will be pleased to know that ” I’ve seen the future” and you probably won’t have as much trouble with the puzzles in the pipeline as you did with this one. 

22 comments on “MPP 030 – Review

  1. Umm….. according to my electronic searches, Saxe-Coburg-Gotha is omitted from the official listings as it subsequently became the house of Windsor. The one missing from the list is Norman.

    1. I agree, Jane, and that was my thinking. Windsor was already one of the answers. That’s why I had Norman.

      1. I appreciate that, BD, but the fact remains a) they were one and the same dynasty and b) Norman gets left out.

        Apologies to Beet – I congratulate you on your prize, just happen to disagree with the answer on this occasion!

  2. Yay! An early Christmas present for me!

    I couldn’t parse 20d because you sneakily used a prophet other than Eli – I thought it was crossword law that a prophet was always Eli! Next thing you’ll be referring to ancient cities other than Ur and then where will we be.

  3. Congratulations Beet.
    I was of course in the Norman camp for exactly the reasons mentioned by Jane and Expat Chris above. I must have found the same web sites that supported that view.
    Thanks again Prolixic and Sue for the review.

      1. The official website of the British Monarchy states that Victoria remained a member of the House of Hanover after her marriage to Albert and that Edward VII was the only Saxe-Coburg monarch, the name subsequently being changed to Windsor (which, of course was also included in the puzzle). Just sayin…

  4. I printed this one out – intended to have a go at it – got bogged down in painting kitchen – lost crossword etc – whatever . . . congratulations to Beet.
    I think, as a mega A.A.Milne/ Winnie the Pooh, fan that the picture for 14d is a Pooh trap for heffalumps.

  5. Could I just remind everyone of the old school mnemonic for remembering the English royal dynastic houses:-

    No Plan Like Yours To Study History Wisely.

    I rest my case, but would offer apologies to any ancestors of William the Conqueror, William Rufus, Henry 1 and Stephen for their exclusion in this puzzle. Oh – and about the Domesday Book………….

  6. I even went further back to the house of orange. Can’t remember where I got that from. Anyway I didn’t finish the grid. I didn’t get eking and another one…. Bit I think. Congratulations to beet who’s crossword I enjoyed in rookie corner. Better luck next month eh? Keep dreaming…

  7. Congratulations to Beet! Enjoy your treat.

    I loved this puzzle! My answer was two thirds correct in that I had Saxe-Coburg but forgot to add the Gotha! Not good.

    I had much enjoyment completing the puzzle. I really liked finding Hosea as a change from Eli, but was defeated by 25d. Thanks very much for the explanation Crypticsue.

    Big thanks to Prolixic for the super MPP and to Crypticsue for the excellent review.

  8. Please accept very humble apology for blip in email address. My excuse is that I am trying to comment using a tablet to post for the first time.

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