Never knowingly undersolved.

Inquisitor #12/Phi – Cousin R.I.P.

Posted by loonapick on March 30th, 2007


Despite the sombre occasion which inspired the theme of Phi’s puzzle, this was an enjoyable crossword to solve.  The clues were not overly complex, and, despite taking an inordinate amount of time to work out the name we were looking for, my overall feeling is that I could have completed this much more quickly had I known the expression “cater cousin” and that u.s. = “as above” (see below).  I filled the grid in less than an hour, spent at least another hour agonising over the name of Phi’s deceased pet, and then another 20 minutes or so looking up (invaluable website) to find a word which could link the unthemed entris that I had worked out, before realising that I’d have got these much quicker by applying a bit of lateral thinking to the three long anagrammed entries.

Anyway, I got there in the end.

Here’s how: –

1) The unthemed entries were not overly difficult.

Clues of note were:-


12         CAR(IB)E – a small carnivorous South American fish

15         REF(i)T – old word for “looted”

19         CHARNECO – CHAR + (once)* – once a sweet wine

20         P-RE(CE)DE – “rede” is a word for advice that I don’t remember coming across before, but then I am still a comparative novice when it comes to barred crosswords.

26          EMERGED – M in (<=degree)

28         (pet) SHOP BOYS – I’m not sure that the Pet Shop Boys qualify as a group since there are but two of them

31          QU(it)E(q)U(it)E – Convoluted clue, but it makes sense and leads you to the answer – I liked “waiters” as the definition

33         AORTA – although I have to admit that I don’t have a clue why

34         IKAT – first letters of Indonesion Knotters Are Tie-dying.  Ikat is the name of a Malayan tie-dying process and of the cloth that results from the process

35         PAR-AMOS – windswept plains of South America

36         NO-R(a)THS – a rath is a prehistoric Irish hill-fort

37          LI(BAN)T


1          see below

2          LLANEROS – (<=sore ‘n’ all) inhabitants of a llano, a large grassy plain in Latin America

3          OENONE – a nymph in Greek mythology, abandoned by Paris in favour of Helen

4          MEET-NESS – not sure about the “enraptured in look” bit, but meetness is an old word for suitability

5          ROT(CH)E – a very small arctic seabird, and “rote” is apparently the roar of the surf – you learn something new every day when you do crosswords!

7          see below

18         SCARPETTO – (spectator)* – a kind of climbing boot

23         ICES-TONE – another word for cryolite or Greenland spar, a type of rock

24         see below

25         SOU(A)R-I – a South American evergreen tree

26         E-YE(PI)T

27         see below

29         BUCHU – (<=cub) +HU(?) – can’t see the “endless shouting” = HU, but a buchu is a South African shrub, the oils of which are used in the treatment of urinary organ diseases

2) The unclued down entries were as follows:

1          FIRS-T

7          CAT-ER

24         K(ISS)ING where ISS is the International Space Station

27         GERM-AN

3) Once the grid is filled you are left with the following along the top, middle and bottom rows

TOP                  FLO?MER?CAR?N and unused letters A, I and I, therefore FLO(AMERICA)RIN

MIDDLE            KO?ASA?OVE?CK and unused letters P, B and E, therefore KOP(AS ABOVE)ECK

BOTTOM           G?IOU?TEA?NEA and unused letters U, R and M, therefore GUI(OUR TEAM)NEA

4) We are now ready to work out the name of Phi’s pet – I worked it out by looking up each of the unclued words and eventually finding one word that they all had in common – COUSIN (FIRST COUSIN, CATER COUSIN, COUSIN GERMAN and KISSING COUSIN).

However, Cousin doesn’t immediately spring to mind as a typical name for a pet cat, so I had to confirm it via the anagrams.

Each of the anagrams follows a pattern – a word for a coin, and a definition of the letters US inside (America, as above = ut supra = u.s., and our team, as in sport eg), so they cleverly spell out CO(US)IN.

2 Responses to “Inquisitor #12/Phi – Cousin R.I.P.”

  1. says:

    I managed to get Co(us)in from the three anags after a fairly speedy romp through the clues, so cracked this puzzle in a bit under 40 minutes – easily the quickest Inquisitor so far. But I’m paying for it in spades – No. 13 seems to be the hardest so far.

    Later addition: 33A AORTA: “Limit to amusement” = “A or T”, a in “supplied by a” = A. 4D MEETNESS = rev. of SENT = enraptured in SEEM = look. 29D BUCHU: endless shouting = HU(e) as in ‘hue and cry’.

  2. says:

    It may be worth explaining how a cat came to be called COUSIN. All our cats are strays in one way or another. About ten years ago we began being visited by a little tabby-and-white who was always accompanied by a brindle kitten who fled whenever we came near, and was promptly called her ‘Terrified Cousin’. When (after three weeks we finally got between her and the door) she decided that staying in was better (she promptly didn’t go out for three weeks), the name stuck. She came with us to NZ, but succumbed to cardiomyopathy just before Christmas.

    Two kittens (Dot and Dash) have replaced her. No, nothing to do with Morse code…

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