MPP 050 – Review

Monthly Prize Puzzle – 050

July 2016

A Puzzle by Alchemi


Many congratulations to Beet, the winner of the July Prize Puzzle competition, who wins one of the Hamlyn Telegraph Puzzle books as her prize.  I’m not sure what she has on Mrs BD, but this is the third time her name has been pulled out of the electronic hat!

The instructions were that the solutions to 10 clues include double letters, of which only one is recognised in the wordplay.  This gave 10 letters to be added.  Those letters are an anagram of a person who is well-known to solvers of this puzzle (4,6) and solvers had to enter this name.  The letters, shown in red throughout this review, are VNMO in the across answers and AREDOT in the down answers.  The answer is the real name of yours truly, which I temporarily added to the “About” page for those that didnt already know.  By the way, I have now restored the page!


1a    Commissioned roster I smartly tore up (4,4)
ARMY LIST: an anagram (tore up) of I SMARTLY

5a    Actor somehow has put tree back (6)
SHARIF: an anagram (somehow) of HAS followed by the reversal (back) of a tree

9a    One competed after companion hurried up (8)
CHIVVIED: I (one) and a verb meaning competed preceded by a Companion of Honour

10a    Home cooking often means exotic toppings for what one receives (6)
INCOME: our usual two-letter word for home followed by the initial letters of four words in the clue

12a    One putting up with voter switching from left to right (7)
ERECTOR: start with a voter and swap (switching) the L(eft) for an R(ight)

13a    Taken in by setter’s plot to cover up unfinished bit (7)
IMBIBED: I’M, the abbreviated for of setter’s / setter is and a garden plot around (to cover up) most of (unfinished) BI[t]

14a    Mature sow carrying a child (8)
SEASONED: a verb meaning to sow around the A from the clue and a male child

16a    Problem keeping Popish Plot ultimately quiet (5)
SHTUM: A problem around (keeping) the final letters (ultimately) of two words in the clue

19a    Fraction of surgical procedure no longer open (5)
RATIO: start with an nine-letter surgical procedure and remove the letters (no longer) the letters that make up the word OPEN

20a    Against that is two different notes and a couple of directions for a sort of waltz (8)
VIENNESE: the letter that represents versus or against followed by the Latin abbreviation for “that is”, N(ote) and the third note of the diatonic scale of C (two different notes), and finally two compass directions

22a    Endorse business put back together (7)
COMMEND: a CO(mpany) or business followed by a verb meaning to put back together or repair

24a    Despatch returned by soldier (7)
TROOPER: reverse (returned) a despatch or message

26a    One charged after good deal for beauty treatment (6)
LOTION: a charged particle preceded by (after) a word meaning a good deal or many

27a    Terrible red claws drawn in a hurry (8)
SCRAWLED: an anagram (terrible) of RED CLAWS

28a    Gets angry as one bows out (6)
STEAMS: A (one) with bows of ships outside

29a    Argentina’s best osteopath uses dangerous substance (8)
ASBESTOS: hidden (uses) inside the clue


1d    Article about communist German city (6)
AACHEN: the two-letter indefinite article around our usual communist revolutionary

2d    Show featured in state outlet (4,5)
MAIN EVENT: a five-letter US state followed by an outlet

3d    Dusty green eggs officer carries (5)
LOVAT: some eggs inside (carries) the abbreviation for an army officer

4d    German you managed to avoid getting a replacement for electric range (6,6)
SIERRA NEVADA: the German for you is followed by a verb meaning managed and one meaning to avoid in which the A from the clue replaces the final E (symbol for electric field)

6d    With bank starting to open, stocks sink (9)
HANDBASIN: a word meaning with and the initial letter (starting) of B[ank] inside (to open) a phrase meaning stocks / keeps in store (3,2)

7d    Doctor carries foreign character’s lozenge (5)
RHOMB: one of the abbreviations for a doctor under (carries) a Greek (foreign) letter

8d    Note about Benedictines’ liberties (8)
FREEDOMS: the fourth note of the diatonic scale of C followed by a two-letter word meaning about and titles given to members of monastic orders such as the Benedictines

11d    Nonsense credits after director breaks records (12)
FIDDLESTICKS: some credits or loans preceded by D(irector) inside (breaks) some documentary records

15d    There’s extra decay up where they put things (9)
STOREROOM: The reversal (up in a down clue) of a phrase that could mean extra decay – I found it a tad confusing that the decay was plural

17d    Flyer‘s exam? Look through mine! (4,5)
TEST PILOT: an exam followed by a two-letter look inside a mine

18d    Snaps about torture by the French (8)
CRACKLES: a charade of the single-letter Latin abbreviation for about, an instrument of torture and the plural French definite article

21d    Is inquisitive about daughter’s many, many cats (6)
PRIDES: a verb meaning is inquisitive around D(aughter) – many, many here indicates multiple companies of big cats

23d    Dull friend (5)
MATTE: without the duplicated letter in the answer, this is a friend

25d    Old enough finally to smoke a cigarette inside (2,3)
OF AGE: the final letters of [t]O and [smok]E with a slang word for a cigarette inside.


  1. Ora Meringue
    Posted July 17, 2016 at 5:07 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Congratulations, Beet.

    Lovely puzzle.

    Thanks to Alchemi and to Big Dave

  2. Jane
    Posted July 17, 2016 at 6:19 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Many thanks for the review, BD. Realised that I’d made a faux pas over the parsing of 20a. Forgot that I only had to include one of the ‘Ns’ in the wordplay so had used the two ‘Ns’ for the notes followed by East and South-East for the directions. Ho hum – read the clue properly………

    I don’t think Beet has got anything on Mrs. BD – far more likely that, being such a clever girl, she’s cracked the code for the electronic hat! Seriously though, congratulations Beet – a most worthy winner of a great puzzle.

    • Shropshirelad
      Posted July 17, 2016 at 7:39 pm | Permalink | Reply

      Question is – did she leave her address Jane?

      • Jane
        Posted July 17, 2016 at 7:42 pm | Permalink | Reply

        Not going to let me forget that one, are you!!!

  3. Beet
    Posted July 18, 2016 at 9:40 am | Permalink | Reply

    Wonderful! Thanks to Mrs BD. I owe her a drink if we ever meet.

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