Fifteensquared

Never knowingly undersolved.

Independent 6456/Virgilius

Posted by Colin Blackburn on June 26th, 2007

Colin Blackburn.

A fairly easy Virgilius today with no obvious theme other than the inter-linking of a couple of the long entries. Though someone will now tell me that a knight’s move sequence reveals something important!

CD = cryptic def.
DD = double def.
* = anagram
< = reversal

Across
1 SOFT-BOIL — CD — soldiers (strips of toasted bread) go into soft-boiled eggs more easy than hard-boiled eggs.
5 ARAMIS — A RAM + IS — sign = Aries = RAM. Aramis is one of the Musketeers.
10 BORNEO — BORNE+O — this was the last but one to go in as I convinced myself that only a T would fit between the N and the O.
13 RUSTICATE — (TACIT)< in RUSE — a student might have once been punished by being sent to the country, ie banished from college.
14 DOUBLE-CROSSED — CD — nice wording using the switching of banks in the same way as the FERRYMAN clue yesterday.
16 TRUE-LOVER’S KNOT — CD — a knot that involves a double-crossing but symbolises love rather than deceit.
20 IGNORANCE — DD — ignorance of the law is no defence; ignorance is bliss.
24 YASMIN — (N+I+M+SAY)< &lit — from the East determines the direction as if the grid was aligned to the compass, a convention rather than a fact as I solved the puzzle.
25 BYPASSED — CD — the reference is to either a heart or town bypass, both will create a new arterial route.
Down
2 FIFTH COLUMNISTS — DD — regulars on a (news)paper are columnists.
3 BEAR CUB — BARBECU(e)* — lovely surface and nicely observed anagram
4 INTERWEAVING — R IN (VINTAGE WINE)* — good anagram again. Shuttle refers to weaving, though this clue also ties in with 16ac if there is a theme at all.
6 ROOKIES — IE in ROOKS &lit — my last entry, men = chess pieces, namely = ie is put in lately in the sequence ROOKS and the whole clue provides a definition of the answer.
7 MANDARIN ORANGES — O in MANDARIN RANGES — the fact that a mandarin is a duck confused me for a short time here. I’m surprised there weren’t two ducks a l’orange.
11 USER-FRIENDLY — FRIEND in (SURELY)* — a Quaker belongs to the Society of Friends.
15 STAIRWAY — cheapeSTAIRWAYs
17 LORELEI — expLORELEIpzig — two good hidden words in a row, both having very good surfaces.
18 KATRINA — (AN ARK + IT)* — strangely tropical after yesterday’s floods though the reference is to the flooding in Louisiana caused by Hurricane Katrina.

6 Responses to “Independent 6456/Virgilius”

  1. neildubya says:

    I couldn’t see a theme either – although two black crosses do appear in the grid so that’s another sort of “double cross”. I’m not usually a fan of cryptic defs but I liked the ones in this puzzle, especially 1A.

  2. nmsindy says:

    This was a pleasing puzzle with an old-fashioned feel. While themes can be good, clueing is also at the heart of the game IMHO, and there were some excellent clues here such as IGNORANCE, SOFT-BOIL and ADDING UP.

  3. eimi says:

    I’m in the SOFT-BOIL fan club too. A classic CD.

  4. michod says:

    Hear hear, even if it took a while to crack!

  5. alan j cannon says:

    I think the ‘anagram’ in 4D must be INTERWEAVING. A small point but i did spend a bit of time thinking about interleaving. ajc

  6. colinblackburn says:

    Thanks for the correction Alan. I did have the correct answer in the grid but including inter-linking in the preamble was a inter- too far.

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