A Puzzle by Encota
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The puzzle is available by clicking on the above grid.
Today we have a third puzzle from Encota. As usual, the setter will be delighted to receive feedback from you, the solvers. I do ask that you remember that for most setters this is a new experience, so please only offer constructive criticism.
Prolixic has updated his document entitled “A brief guide to the construction of cryptic crossword clues” which can be downloaded, in pdf format, from the Rookie Corner index page or by clicking below.
A review of this crossword by Prolixic follows.
I solved this whilst waiting for an early morning flight to Edinburgh. As I was late back into London, the review has been delayed, for which apologies. This was a lot easier than his previous puzzles and there are only a few points on the clues.
1 Arab chief promoted, we hear, and reorganisation follows (5-2)
SHAKE UP – A homophone (we hear) of Sheik up (Arab chief promoted).
5 Endeavour was one sleuth Thaw’s leadership cultivated (7)
SHUTTLE – An anagram (cultivated) of SLEUTH T (Thaw’s leading letter – leadership). I don’t think that leadership (meaning direction, control or authority) works as an initial letter indicator.
9 Being sexist, hence these two must be topless (9)
EXISTENCE – Remove the first letters (these two must be topless) from sexist and hence.
10 Chap I’m exchanging for a central African primate (5)
CHIMP – Replace the A in CHAP with the “I’M” from the clue.
11 Adds a finishing touch to peridot signet piece (4,1)
DOTS I – The answer is hidden in (piece) PERIDOT SIGNET. I suspect that this is a made up phrase based on the old expression of dotting the Is and crossing the Ts. The answer is not, as far as I have been able to find, ever used on its own.
12 Steer off-course approaching head – then it’s to the point (9)
TERSENESS – An anagram (off-course) of STEER followed by another word for a head of land. I am not sure that the answer matches the same part of speech as the definition even if you include the it’s as part of the definition.
14 Ordinary pudding? (5-3-6)
BREAD-AND-BUTTER – A double definition of a traditional pudding and something ordinary as in simple and everyday.
17 Some stain buses appallingly from too much drink? Quite the reverse, quite the reverse! (14)
ABSTEMIOUSNESS – An anagram (appallingly) of SOME STAIN BUSSES. The clue works as wordplay from definition with the second “quite the reverse” telling us that the correct reading is “definition from wordplay”.
21 Attack! Laugh for the last time! Attack! (9)
ONSLAUGHT – A five letter word meaning attack has the E (last time) replaced with the LAUGH from the clue. Some editors would not be happy with last time to indicate the final letter of time.
23 Superman actor for ever turning, circling Spain? (5)
REEVE – Reverse (turning) the EVER from the clue around the IVR for Spain. The construction definition for wordplay seems back to front.
24 Clumsy in every practical task, at least initially (5)
INEPT – The IN from the clue followed by the initial letters of every practical task.
25 Make something of bric-a-brac in future (9)
FABRICATE – Some of the letters (something of or a portion of) in bric-a-brac go inside a word meaning future. Not all editors would accept a loose construction of take some unspecified number of letters.
26 Back from Berne, Dior rested every second (7)
ENDORSE – The even letters (every second) in BERNE DIOR RESTED.
27 Tremendous Knowledge Dave – perhaps e could be (liberally) so described? (7)
EGGHEAD – You need to know your quiz shows for the team on which “Tremendous Knowledge Dave” appears. The second part of the clue indicates how the letter E could be clued in a libertarian fashion if the answer were split 3,4.
1 Perversely stayed sober! (6)
STEADY – An anagram (perversely) of STAYED.
2 Through with the Tour, not suitable for all, supporting a Roland Garros for example (7)
AVIATOR – A word meaning through (as in I am going through A to get to B) followed by the TOUR from the clue without the letter meaning suitable for all, all underneath (supporting) the A from the clue.
3 Ate most of extra 99 before rescue! (9)
EXTRICATE – The first four letters (most of) extra followed by the alleged (to crossword setters, as it is not an accurate representation) number 99 in Roman numerals followed by the ATE from the clue.
4 Gaining access to great tenpin bowling (11)
PENETRATING – An anagram (bowling) of GREAT TENPIN.
5 She may take you to court? (3)
SUE – Double definition of a lady’s name and a legal action.
6 Largely dirty old man’s brother maybe (5)
UNCLE – Most (all but the last two letters) of a word meaning dirty. The use of largely to indicate the removal of an unknown number of letters would not be acceptable to all editors.
7 Third State Secret half-hidden in dry lining (7)
TRISECT – The state code for Rhode Island followed by half of the word secret all inside the abbreviation for dry (as in not drinking alcohol).
8 In finance, overextended commitment results from losing shirt in former position (8)
EXPOSURE – A two letter word meaning former followed by a word meaning position from which the letter T (for shirt) has been removed.
13 Formidable trouble to Bluebeard (11)
REDOUBTABLE – An anagram (trouble) of TO BLUEBEARD.
15 Arsenal informally without wingers is superior to Frenchman’s twenty most intimidating? (9)
UNNERVING – The nickname for Arsenal without the first and last letters (without wingers) above (is superior to) the French word for twenty with the last letter removed (most). I think mostly would have been better as a delete the last letter indicator.
16 It runs over 8 furlongs, and may supply pots! (8)
CAMOMILE – what may go into tea pots… The name of a river followed by the abbreviation for over and the distance represented by 8 furlongs.
18 Cost containment makes us delay (7)
SUSPEND – The US from the clue inside (containment) a word meaning cost. The makes is redundant, the language Yoda like and not the best clue of the bunch.
19 Look at Jimmy playing Guitar Weeping? (7)
SEEPAGE – A three letter word meaning look followed by the surname of the Led Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy.
20 Table foot? (6)
LEGEND – A table containing explanations is also, split 3,3, where the foot would be found.
22 Later found between the rafters (5)
AFTER – The answer is hidden in RAFTERS.
25 Antenna – now half price! (3)
FEE – Half of the word FEELER (antenna).