Never knowingly undersolved.

Guardian 24,133/Araucaria – well content to finish this one!

Posted by loonapick on July 19th, 2007


A typical Araucaria crossword, which hinges on being able to solve one key clue.  In this case the key answer was the one at 19ac.  Once you have that worked out, the rest (almost) falls into place.

Of course, being an Araucaria puzzle, there is the usual mix of obscure words and phrases, and some “challenging” wordplay, but, all in all, an enjoyable puzzle that leaves you 19ac,8 when you’ve finished it.

10,25 TEMPE-RATE – Tempe being a valley near Mount Olympus, noted for its rugged scenery.

12 CAT-A-MOUNT – another name for the puma

14 SAT-ANIC – (homophone of ALNWICK, a castle in Northumbria)

17 CAPRI(corn)

19,13 CON-SCIENCE – this gives you CON for 19ac, and these three letters make up parts of answers and clues throughout the puzzle.

21,19,1 ALLEGRO CON MOTO – (organ cello)*-MOTO – a musical instruction, meaning “quickly and lively” (is “livelily” a word)

22 SEGRAVE (homophone of SEA-GRAVE) – very clever clue, as Sir Henry Segrave died on Lake Windermere while trying to break the water speed record in 1930.

24 WATERFALL – not sure about “force in the North”?

26 TIT-US – as in “Titus Groan”, the hero of the Gormenghast trilogy by Mervyn Peake – sitting on my bookshelf waiting to be read.

29 EVACUATED – (due caveat)*


2,19,16 CHILL-ICON-C-ARNE – Thomas Arne, composer of Rule Britannia

3 (cen)TRE-PANNING – removing part of a bone, especially the skull


5 JETTISON – JET (1’s not)*


13 S-AC(c)RA – wedge-shaped bone in the lower spine, made up of five vertebra

15 THOUGH-TFUL(<=LUFT) – the definition is CON-SIDE-RATE, words appearing in the crossword.  LUFT is the German for “air” as in Luftwaffe and Lufthansa


19 C(hurch)-HOT-APE-G – apparently a “chota peg” is a small drink

22 (con)SULTAN(t)

24 WELL CONTENT – a reference to “Alice in Wonderland”, I presume?

7 Responses to “Guardian 24,133/Araucaria – well content to finish this one!”

  1. linxit says:

    24ac – ‘force’ is a Scottish or northern English word for a waterfall, I think.

  2. Mick Hodgkin says:

    A force is certainly a waterfall in the lake District. And I believe there is talk of a well of treacle at the mad hatter’s tea party in Alice in Wonderland, as you say.
    SACRA was clever – I was trying to work out how SA could be followed by a three-letter word with its middle taken out, but of course it’s S(outh), with African capital for Accra.
    I could have tried for a long time without getting SEGRAVE.

  3. Ali says:

    Well, after the ‘Boy’ puzzle and the far-from-straightforward prize crossword last Saturday (which I couldn’t finish and am looking forward to seeing blogged later in the week!), all I can say is that Araucaria is certainly making us work for our dues this month.

    I tackled this one on the bus and managed to crack 19A and its related answers without too much trouble, but I’m fairly fairly sure I would be as old as the setter before I ever solved SACRA, SEGRAVE and CHOTA PEG.


  4. radchenko says:

    22ac is about as difficult as you’re likely to get, what with the pun, the obscure reference, and the definition in the middle of of the clue. Very clever all the same. Just didn’t get it.

    Not convinced by the explanations offered for WATERFALL, although I guessed it.

    I had “ALLEGRO CON BRIO” for 21,19,1 which meant I go nowhere near 9ac (OTHERWISE) even though I took ‘vanquished’ for the anagrind. Annoyingly it was the first clue I got (or didn’t get).

    I didn’t get 22dn either, although I remember thinking con-sultant would have made for an interesting clue.

    Second one to really hammer me this week after Taupi’s brute on Tuesday.

  5. muck says:

    6dn: is ATAM a bit?

    21,19,1: I had ALLEGRO CON BRIO also, but fortunately 9ac and 11ac told me it wasn’t the answer. Where does MOTO come from?

  6. AlanR says:

    6 down: I was confused too by the fact that ‘atam’ is in catamount – but I think a bit of catamount is a cat – i.e. a tom.

    Tough puzzle – after being impressed at finishing yesterday’s by the time I reached work (20 minute walk) for the first time, today’s took me till 10pm!

  7. muck says:

    Thanks AlanR – Just woke from a deep sleep and thought ATOM but you got there before me

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