Fifteensquared

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Independent 6473/Merlin

Posted by neildubya on July 16th, 2007

neildubya.
Across
1 O,A,FISH,NESS – “o” is a short form of “of”. Good clue to get us going.
10 (ACTIONS IN A LAB IN)* – CANNIBALISATION has a few meanings, apart from the obvious grisly one.
12/13 SC,(JONATHAN ROSS LET)* – Excellent clue and a really good anagram. That said, I filled the answer in without really understanding why, apart from vaguely thinking that the letters of “Jonathan Ross” plus a few others could make SCARLETT JOHANSSON. Even after I worked out the anagram that still left SC to be accounted for which Chambers online says is a shortened form of “scilicet” (Latin for “namely” – or, in this clue, “to wit”).
15 AGOG,O – I don’t really get the definition for this one: “Name often found in nightclub“.
17 hidden in “awfUL TRAgedy”
18 LSE,A in ALTER – only just worked this one out: “not with standing [room]” = ALL-SEATER.
19 NOT,E BOOK
26 (APART EXIT)*,E – nice idea and I think it mostly works although the surface reading (“Who’s moving apart, exit to Spain?“) is a bit creaky.
 
Down
1 hidden in “dOC CAMe” – a ref to William of Occam (or Ockham).
2 T in FANCY HAT.
3 (BRILLIANT GOALS NIL -ALL)* – STIRLING ALBION, behomoths of the Scottish League. I liked “not exactly” as an anagram indicator. Also, “not exactly brilliant” seems like a precise description of the team (apologies to any fans out there).
4 NO,AH(oy)
7 FINK<,E
8 (NO PORT IN I)* – PINOT NOIR. Good clue, nice surface reading.
13 JO,URN,EYED
16 (A DOCTORS)*,A – OSTRACODA. Got this one wrong. It was the last one I filled in so I had O?T?A?O?A and I knew it had to be an anagram of A DOCTORS with an A at the end. I think I went for OCTRASODA (it’s hard to tell as I filled on the correct answer over the top of my incorrect one) – anyway, I wasn’t convinced so I checked the other most likely combinations of letters until I found the right one. I have to say I was amazed to find the word in the Concise OED.
22 EG,DOH< – a Hodge is a “typical agricultural English labourer” according to the Concise OED. I think I’ve got the wordplay right – I’ve assumed that “D’oh” would be Homer Simpson’s form of “Oh dear”.

7 Responses to “Independent 6473/Merlin”

  1. nmsindy says:

    Some pleasing, clever, material here. Not a habitué myself, but Chambers says A GOGO appears in titles of night clubs. NOTE BOOK was good too because it gave the idea of not e-book. Re ALL-SEATER, that was excellent – not with standing (“being split up”). I’ve seen the idea before, but not as well done as this.

  2. ilancaron says:

    never heard of whisky a go go? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Whisky_a_Go_Go maybe it’s just an american thing…

  3. neildubya says:

    Nope – never heard of that. I didn’t really make this clear in my blog but what I didn’t understand was why Merlin refers to it as a “name” – why is A GO-GO a name? Or is he using that more to make the clue read a bit better?

  4. nmsindy says:

    The def part of clue is “Name often found in night club”. Chambers full entry is – in abundance, to one’s heart’s content; used in names of nightclubs etc.

    All of this I learned for the first time today, but it does seem to add up.

    It’s not mentioned in Concise OED, the other dict I have now.

  5. neildubya says:

    You’re right – seems fair enough. Really must get a copy of Chambers for the office…

  6. Richard Heald says:

    Lovely puzzle, containing at least two contenders for ‘Clue of the week’ in the shape of the SCARLETT JOHANSSON one and the terrific YELLOW BRICK ROAD ‘& lit.’.

  7. Mick Hodgkin says:

    I agree – Yellow Brick Road was wizard!

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