MPP 082 – Review – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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MPP 082 – Review

MPP No 082

A puzzle by Prolixic


The instructions said:  A number of solutions contain a common feature and a smaller number of solutions have the opposite feature. What is the total number of solutions in question? The clues give an additional hint about the feature that you are looking for.

The consonants in 15 solutions appear in alphabetical order or reverse alphabetical order . Because the solution to 28a  has a repeated consonant, the Official Adjudicator also accepted 14 as a correct answer to the question.

The additional hint is revealed when you notice that the first letter of each clue spells out LOOK AT THE ORDER OF THE LETTER ENTRIES

Congratulations to this month’s winner – John Bee- who wins a Telegraph puzzles book of his choice.


1a     Lord‘s leading after check with rook (6)
CHRIST – CH (check) and IST (first, leading) with R (Rook) inserted

4a    Offer the greatest support following everyone else? (8)
BACKMOST– BACK [the] MOST (offer the greatest support

9a     Officer leaves executive head of university (6)
RECTOR – DI (Detective Inspector, officer) leaves DIRECTOR (executive)

10a     Kinky Shah with a gin and port (8)
SHANGHAI – An anagram (kinky) of SHAH with A GIN

12a    Archdeacon in French city ousting nationalist retaliators (8)
AVENGERS – VEN (archdeacon) found in the French city of AnGERS (in place of the ousted N for Nationalist)

13a    Terribly pompous people relaxed entering The Bahamas (6)
BLIMPS – LIMP (relaxed) entering BS (The IVR Code for the Bahamas)

15a     Two notes towards the end (4)
LATE – LA and TE (two musical notes)

16a     Hideous play about author on the face of it (10)
APPARENTLY – An anagram (hideous) of PLAY ‘about’ PARENT (author)

19a    End of serious dice game involving lavish tips (10)
SCRAPHEAPS – the S at the end of serious, CRAPS (dice game) ‘involving’ HEAP (lavish)

20a     One owned by Mary and the French doctor (4)
LAMB – LA (French definite article) MB (Bachelor of Medicine, doctor)

23a     Ruined race with editor (6)
DASHED – DASH (race) ED (editor)

25a    Displays a contemptuous look describing a king’s footwear (8)
SNEAKERS – SNEERS (displays a contemptuous look) describing or going round A (from the clue) K (king)

27a     Equine event venue involved with the cops (8)
CHEPSTOW – An anagram (involved) of W (with) THE COPS

28a    Reach American communications company with key international number (6)
ATTAIN – ATT (American communications company) A (musical key) I (international) N (number)

29a    Outrageous tragedian dismissing one amateur star (3,5)
RED GIANT – An anagram (outrageous of TRAGEDIAN once you have ‘dismissed’ I (one) A (Amateur)

30a     Father Time pursues Peers (6)
PRIEST – T (time) pursues or goes after PRIES (peers)



1d     Trim back of dog? (7)
CURTAIL – CUR TAIL (back of dog)

2d    Hero of Bronte has traveller carrying casket for Victor (9)
ROCHESTER – Swap the V for Victor in a ROVER (traveller) with a CHEST (casket)

3d     Excessive drinker – one may follow Victoria (6)
SPONGE – If Victoria is a cake….

5d     Long to be embraced by teachers (4)
ACHE – Lurking in (embraced by) teACHErs

6d    Electronic device limiting current and resistance is more helpful (8)
KINDLIER – KINDLE (electronic device) ‘limiting) I (electrical current) and followed by R (Resistance)

7d    Type of writing produced by old German thespian (5)
OGHAM – O (old) G (German) HAM (thespian)

8d     Try this cocktail, it’s dry (7)
THIRSTY – An anagram (cocktail) of TRY THIS

11d     Extended highlight in two parts (7)
TRIPLED – In two parts tells you to split high and light – TRIP (high) LED (light)

14d    Rotational movement travelling faster than the speed of light (7)
WARPING – Double definition

17d     Excited ad-men rate Elastoplast? (9)
TRADENAME – An anagram (excited) of AN MEN RATE

18d    Night time entertainment with a family briefly going round Fleet Street? (5-3)
APRES-SKI – A (from the clue) KIn (family ‘briefly’) going round PRESS (Fleet Street?)

19d     Tipple bars regularly mixed with cider (7)
SIDECAR – An anagram (mixed) of the regular letters of bArS and CIDER

21d    Revolutionary sailor has to pose holding opponents helmet (7)
BASINET – A reversal (revolutionary) of AB (sailor) with SIT (to pose) holding N E (opponents in a game of bridge)

22d    I should be wearing hose as one providing service (6)
WAITER – I (from the clue) inserted into (wearing) WATER (hose as a verb)

24d     Employ feature of Foucault’s pendulum (5)
SPEND – A feature of FoucaultS PENDulum

26d    Stamp name for Penny(4)
COIN – A verb meaning to stamp; to name; or a piece of money such as a penny

Thanks to Prolixic and the BDs for their parts in the March competition proceedings

6 comments on “MPP 082 – Review

  1. Well done, John Bee. It’s always nice to know the winner, and I’m pleased to say I got one of the right answers (and I did put a question mark against 28a).

    Thanks to CS, and once again to Prolixic for a superb puzzle – but what happened to the apostrophe in 21d? :wink:

  2. Congratulations, John, enjoy your prize!
    I spent ages mulling over 28a and whether to count it once, twice or not at all.

    Thanks also to CS for the review. Think you’ve printed 22d in the wrong colour and christened 7d as 7a but that’s just nit-picking as it was very brave of you to go for the two colourways – must have taken ages!

    1. Now corrected – the 7d and 7a occurs because the template I use insists on making both the Across and Down clue numbers have an ‘a’ after them, and although I check and check there’s always a chance of one slipping through

      As for the red/blue waiter – well we did have to leave something for you to find, didn’t we? ;)

  3. Wow 😀
    Made my day. Really happy especially as it was a Prolixic puzzle.
    I did love 7d and remember seeing an Ogham stone in the BM last time I was in London.
    14d ticked the inner trekkie in me too.
    Thanks to Prolixic and CS and BD and his electronic sorting hat.

  4. Safe to say this went way over my head. Ah well, congrats to John Bee and thanks to Prolixic and CS for the explanation.

  5. Well done John! Thanks to Sue for the review and to Prolixic for the puzzle. It turns out that I forgot to submit my answer, but notwithstanding that, I had counted answers where there were consecutive letters or reversed consecutive letters, of which I counted 17, so I’d have been wrong anyway!

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