Never knowingly undersolved.

Guardian 23925/Orlando

Posted by linxit on November 16th, 2006


Solving time – 11:17

Would have been about three minutes quicker but I got stuck on 1ac(!) and 2dn – from the checking letters I saw SANG FROID, which I knew didn’t make sense but couldn’t get it out of my head.

1 TOPIARIST – Well-disguised anagram (from me anyway) of “spirit to a”
6 LOB(=chuck), B(err)Y – nice for the setter when a real name lends itself so well to a cryptic clue
10 NEOLITHIC – anagram of “coil in the” – but aren’t nounal anagram indicators frowned upon?
14 PRO(P.A.)NE – another form I’m not keen on, where you’ve got A B about = A inside B
15 URI inside TOSM (jumble of “most”)
19 PUT UPON – but I don’t understand the wordplay here. Anybody?
22 SU(US reversed), SPENDER’S – the poet is Sir Stephen Spender
27 TA(N,S)Y – Great Britain is blessed with many 3-letter rivers useful to crossword setters, e.g. CAM, DEE, EXE, URE, USK…

2 PINK, FLOYD – last one I put in (see above). The food writer is Keith Floyd, who had to cook one-handed as the other hand always held a glass of wine.
4 IGNOBLE – anagram of “being lo(w)”
6 LO, IS – ref. Lois Lane, Superman’s girlfriend
7 BE(H)AN – Brendan Behan, Irish playwright.
13 JUSTIN, TIM, E(xperimental)
16 SEMI (rev) around PRESS – although impressed recruits didn’t have a choice in the matter.
19 PAPA, DOC(=cod reversed, cod=jest) – a new meaning of cod for me, I thought it was just a fish.
23 STEED – double def. – John Steed from TV show The Avengers
24 VA,RY – trAVel centre going north, i.e. reversed

8 Responses to “Guardian 23925/Orlando”

  1. says:

    I read PUT UPON as def (“take advantage of”) with PUT=”present” (v.) and “UP ON” as “taken aboard” (on top of something). I pondered about this for a while as well since all of the defs are a bit shaky.

  2. says:

    The river Usk is in Wales!

  3. says:

    Nounal anaginds are frowned upon? Not necessquarily.

  4. says:

    I should add that, to me at least, nounal anginds mean:

    A (nounal anagind) OF (fodder).

    Depends on the rest of the clue grammar adding up of course, but why not have a noun in there? They can be absolutely smashing!

  5. says:

    I’ve changed the entry for 27ac – I used to live in Brecon so I know the Usk very well. I was being lazy before.

    As for nounal anagrinds, I accept that they can work sometimes, but this instance of
    (definition) (fodder) (nounal anagrind) doesn’t work for me. I think soundness of the cryptic part has been sacrificed for the good surface reading.

    Still, that’s just my opinion. I’ve only been doing the Guardian for a couple of months – I don’t think this clue would be seen in the Times though. Vive la difference!

  6. says:

    Well, I agree absolutely in this instance – you can’t wangle it like that!

  7. says:

    Why not?

    ‘Definition equals fodder confusion’ for example is perfectly legit as another way of saying ‘definition equals a confusion of fodder’.

    Where is the grammatical error in that?

  8. says:

    With regard to 6 across, Orlando is probably the master of this type of clue. I find his puzzles are always enjoyable to solve and contain a few moments to make you smile. This was no exception.

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