Never knowingly undersolved.

Guardian 24,157, Orlando: I done it wrong

Posted by michod on August 16th, 2007


 It was mostly quite easy, but with a fiendish top right corner that held me up for ages, and I messed up on two clues early on, which didn’t help. Only finished properly and understood it all as I wrote the blog.


1. ANT ACID. Nice clue, obvious if you know formic acid comes from ants, probably very obscure if you don’t!

5. SUB (bus<) ROSA. Difficult because the term, meaning ‘private’ was unfamiliar to me, though the wordplay is straightforward and I could see the reference to Rosa Parks

1o. RU(I)NG. This one took a while too – if you are ruing something, you are sorry.


14. TROIKA. (rev hidden). Good spot.

15. EN OUNCE. After a mistake at 5 down (cf) I had ‘scanner’, assuming it must be a measure I hadn’t heard of, which held me up with 6 and 8 down. Ounce, confusingly, is a cat – the measure here is ‘en’.

16. OREGANO (ONAGER O<). And an onager is an ass.


26. S(AN)D EEL. The city is Leeds<.

27. GINGHAM. Nice hidden clue.


1. (h)ARROW.

2. TRIMMER. Not sure how exactly this fits ‘timeserver’, but it’s someone who cuts their cloth to fit the prevailing wind, like the Vicar of Bray, or a Blairite turned Brownite.

4. DEAD AS A DOORNAIL. Good anagram with setter’s name in.

5. SHE DONE HIM WRONG. (SONDHEIM EH* – WRONG). The question mark warns you to watch out, and the shortage of anagram fodder made me suspect an anagram indicator within the clue like this. Unfortunately, not remembering the film well and mistaking the anagram, I had ‘She does him wrong’, which messed up 15ac for a while.

6. BURNE-JONES. Another tough one – not an artist I know well. The wordplay is very convoluted:’In Paris, I turned up with a poet, without a painter’ gives JE< + ONE  in BURNS, but using ‘without’ to indicate containment with a comma in between seems less than ideal to me.

8. ARGON NE. Not a French region I was familiar with – it is, in fact in the north east.

16. ON WARDS. Boom boom.


22. SA(L(arg)E)M. Extremely large can give OS for outsize, here it’s the extremes of the word.

23. EDEN. (NEED*).

10 Responses to “Guardian 24,157, Orlando: I done it wrong”

  1. Kevin Ward says:

    I didn’t get 5 across either until I checked Chambers. Sure enough a ‘trimmer’ is also a ‘timeserver’.

  2. radchenko says:

    Glad it wasn’t just me that got horribly stuck on the top right corner. I should have got 15ac and 7dn faster than I did, but resorted to internet for 5ac and 6dn (the key was the EJ (the turned I in paris)).

    10ac is nearly brilliant. Although the surface is better as it is, shouldn’t it really be “one called outside” or “one called without”?

    I had RHINO for 24ac, but no idea why. Any explanation?

  3. Berny says:

    Believe a rhino is a nickname for particular bank note denominations in South Africa

  4. muck says:

    8dn: has to be ARGONNE, but never heard of it

  5. Mick says:

    Rhino is an old slang word for money. I got thatg one late on because I fell into the trap of thinking the second letter of R_I_O had to be a vowel.

  6. muck says:

    8dn: The ARGONNE hills were the site of a famous battle in WWI, near Verdun in N France – details on Wiki & Google.

  7. Simply_simon says:

    When it comes to bees (and honey = money) I understand that a rhino is £250, a hog is variously 6d, 1/-, or 2/6, a sprat is 6d, a pony is £25, a monkey is £500, a sick squid is £6, (boom boom!), and a cows is short for cow’s licker = nicker =£1.

  8. Mick says:

    I haven’t come across rhino for £250, and can’t immediately find it in any lists of Cockney denomination slang (in which, if course, an Archer is now £2000. I think it is just an old slang word for money in general, which fits the definition -‘old bread’ -in a way that £250 wouldn’t.

  9. radchenko says:

    If you google ‘ rhino “term for money”‘ the impression is, as Mick says, that it is the 17th century slang for money in general (old bread, indeed), rather than any specific sum, but the etymology is not quite certain.

  10. Simply_simon says:

    I am not sure that Archer is cockney rhyming slang, though it may well be slang used by Cockneys, being the amount the great novelist Jeffrey didn’t pay a prostitute called Monica.

Leave a Reply

Don't forget to scroll down to the Captcha before you click 'Submit Comment'

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

8 + eight =