NTSPP – 313
Birthday Puzzle by Prolixic
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The puzzle is available by clicking on the above grid.
This puzzle was distributed to those attending last week’s Birthday Bash.
A review of this puzzle by crypticsue follows
I’d already seen the draft celebratory crossword earlier in the week, and the version handed out in the pub didn’t have the useful message about the enumeration on it, so it was rather fun to watch other solvers try to work out what the 28/4 21/3 was all about – as I said to Gnomey ‘think differently about the clues and remember what today is’.
1a Historic structures Wren sanctioned to be rebuilt after 28/4 (5,7,7)
7 ANCIENT WONDERS An anagram (to be rebuilt) of WREN SANCTIONED goes after the number you get after you have divided 28 by 4.
9a 14/2 talked about dioceses acquiring 50 bible fastenings (5,5)
7 SEALS More division produces that number again, this time followed by a homophone (talked about) of some dioceses into which is inserted (acquiring) the Roman numeral for 50. These fastenings originate in a phrase in the Book of Revelation that refers to xxxxx symbolic xxxxx that secure the book or scroll, that John of Patmos saw in his Revelation of Jesus Christ
10a Grandiose prince returned before princess got back (3-2-3)
LAH-DI-DAH A reversal of an informal way of referring to the Shakespearean Prince who became Henry V, the abbreviated and informal way we refer to the late Princess of Wales, and another reversal (back) this time of a way of saying ‘got’.
11a 21/3 nurses in Victoria line station (5,7)
7 SISTERS That sum again followed by some senior nurses.
14a Glitch in bottling fruit (6)
LITCHI ‘Bottling’ indicates that the fruit is hidden in gLITCH In
16a Original Clue: A quirk Ottoman effected?
Revised Clue: A quirk Ottoman effected is seen at the end of speech? (9,4) See comment 8 below.
QUOTATION MARK An anagram (effected) of A QUIRK OTTOMAN
21a/17d Offering modern course in energy (6)
VICTIM This sacrificial offering is obtained by inserting the abbreviated way of referring to the ‘modern’ course of Information and Communications Technology into an informal term for energy or vigour.
22a Latest output the mine processed (2-2-3-6)
UP-TO-THE-MINUTE An anagram (processed)of OUTPUT THE MINE.
25a Analyses astronomical distances without using the speed of light (6)
PARSES Remove the letter used to represent the speed of light from some astronomical distances.
27a Greek university teacher runs away with 28/4 to see leading economies (5,2,5)
GROUP OF 7 The abbreviation for Greek, the abbreviation for the University offering part-time study, and the informal way of referring to a teacher at such a university, without the letter R (runs off), all finished off with the result of another bit of division.
29a Ritchie Neville for one is excellent (4-4)
FIVE-STAR Ritchie Neville being one member of a pop group with the same name as an indication of the highest rank or quality (excellent). And yes I did have to check that he was!
30a This year ______ Don Manley’s fifth 21/3 – it’s a cause for celebration (2,3,5)
WE ARE 7 A verb meaning to put on (don), the fifth letter of ManlEy and another chance to remember a particular times table, if you’ve had enough of dividing numbers.
31a Chinamen get fit running 14/2 film (3,11,5)
THE MAGNIFICENT 7 An anagram (running) of CHINAMEN GET FIT followed by ‘that’ number again.
2d Francis maybe has time for one to help (6)
ASSIST Change the letter at the end of the home of St Francis from an I to a T (time for one)
3d Attacks part of a contract we hear (5)
CLAWS Part of a verb meaning attacks by scratching is a homophone (we hear) of part of a contract.
4d Extended manuscript’s spaces originally (3)
EMS Some spaces used by printers are found in the original letters of Extended Manuscript Spaces.
5d Prepares registers (5)
TILLS Prepares/works the land; cash registers.
6d Brothel lover embraces Desdemona’s husband (7)
OTHELLO The Moor who loved not wisely, but too well is ‘embraced’ in brOTHEL LOver.
7d Import a Ford in South Africa (5)
DRIFT Import here means the meaning or implication of words used; the solution can also mean a ford in South Africa.
8d Familiar routines of church in remote area (8)
SCHTICKS Insert the abbreviation for church into an informal term for remote rural areas.
12d Time to defeat old interfering person (5)
TROUT Put a verb meaning to defeat after the abbreviation for time.
13d Be excited about earl’s old rifle (5)
REAVE An archaic verb meaning to rob and plunder is obtained by inserting the abbreviation for Earl into an informal way of writing or speaking about with great enthusiasm.
15d Stretch or bird (5)
CRANE A verb meaning to stretch the neck in order to see better or the bird of the same name, whose neck is already stretched.
16d Shop with a queue reportedly going round Arab state (5)
QATAR A reversal (going round) of a verb meaning to shop or inform on, A (from the clue) and a homophone (reportedly of queue.
17d See 21
18d Here in France, old King is more remote? (5)
ICIER The French word for here followed by the regnal cipher of an old King. (Makes a nice change from the current Queen!)
19d New aquarium regularly overlooked in Pacific island (5)
NAURU N (new) followed by the odd letters (regularly overlooked) of AqUaRiUm.
20d Dog’s home drops lard originally as a source of obesity? (5,3)
PUPPY FAT A young dog followed by a home on one storey of a building without the L (drops Lard originally)
23d Subject of tweet – Mark’s after cannabis (7)
HASHTAG I’ve not been lured into the world of Twitter yet but I do know that people use this symbol to make it easier to find messages on a particular topic. Another word for cannabis followed by an identifying mark.
24d Result of pronouncedly petite females’shocking treatment (6)
EFFECT If you say out loud (pronouncedly) the abbreviation for female, follow it with another of the same abbreviation and then the abbreviation for some ‘shocking’ treatment.
26d Be annoyed by second eleven? (5)
STEAM The abbreviation for second and what eleven sportspeople could collectively be known as.
27d Cook’s dressed fish with reduction of catmint (5)
GARNI An originally French expression used by a cook to mean something is dressed or trimmed with something, followed by a mint-like plant used to attract cats with its last letter removed (reduction).
28d Fifth option for flier? (5)
PLANE If you’ve used options A B C and D what would be your next choice?
30d Ladies gathering to welcome oriental dynasty (3)
WEI E (eastern, oriental) inserted into an abbreviation for an organisation of ladies who gather or meet regularly.