Fifteensquared

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Guardian 24158/Araucaria – Araucaria?

Posted by ilancaron on August 17th, 2007

ilancaron.

Not a cross-reference in sight nor a long anagram. Was this really Araucaria? I can’t even detect a theme of sorts.

Now that I’ve said this, will someone prove me wrong?

Across

1 LAID-BACK – def is “relaxed” but not sure about “thinking about England?” though it seems like a good candidate for “wordplay in the answer” which would produce DIAL.
10 HELL,AS – not a bad clue albeit my last: “Dis”=HELL, “like”=AS.
12 TRA(NSIT CA)MP – (cast in)* in TRAMP for “walk” and “about” indicates the containment.
17 BIL(AT,ERA)L – AT, ERA in BILL (Brit slang for the heat, i.e. CONSTABULARY which is 4D). OK, so there was one cross-ref here after all.
19 AM,I,GO – I is the “setter” here. The question-mark in the clue is necessary because the answer is a question!
20 W(IRE,T)APPING – guess-hazard time: I suspect that there are printing presses in WAPPING (?).
24 AL,LIED – yeah, that’s how they got AL Capone finally – for tax evasion.
26 JINGLE BELLS=”belles” – Goodness, is it that time of year already? Anyway, ref Alfred JINGLE (“Pickwick Papers”).
27 STIMU=(I must)*,L,US

Down

1 LEG,I[n]TIMACY
2 INST,A[i]LMENT
4 CONSTABULARY – two slang terms for the coppers: “nick” is a Brit term for a police station.
6 CLEOPATRA – (parcel to a)*. Cryptic def of the empress as a “needlewoman” ref. Cleopatra’s Needle on the Embankment (didn’t know this but she has two sisters in Paris and NYC).
7 IDLENESS –ref. MSND: turns out that Puck is sent by Oberon to find a flower called “love-in-IDLENESS”.
11 HA(R,LEY S)TREET – R, LEYS in theatre* – ref. HARLEY STREET which is where all the rich consultants are but I’m not sure how LEYS is produced by “lines” in: “Medical centre on right lines having operating theatre outside”.
16 CART(W,HE)EL
21 PRO(E)M – I’ve always thought of a PROEM as a hybrid of a poem with prose but it is in fact an introduction (or overture).
22 HAD,J

5 Responses to “Guardian 24158/Araucaria – Araucaria?”

  1. beermagnet says:

    1A is a ref. to the phrase “lie back and think of England”.
    Very obvious to us Englanders.

  2. Michod says:

    And leys is a reference to ley lines, the mystical ancient lines of influence supposed to criss-cross the country linking places like Glastonbury. cf. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ley_line.
    Thanks for explaining 2 down – I thought ‘immediate’ would give ‘instant’ round the outside, but couldn’t work out where ILME came from.

  3. Stan says:

    The Times moved to Wapping resulting in a dispute dear to lefty Guardian-readers’ hearts. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wapping_dispute.

    I didn’t detect Araucaria’s signature style here either – maybe he’s off-shored the production to Bangalore.

  4. John Lowe says:

    Could someone please explain 23d. I can see that map is plan but what is the reference to East Street?

  5. FlutterBy says:

    I’m also baffled by the East Street reference in 23d.

    I’d say this *IS* Araucaria, if only for “needlewoman” being Cleopatra!

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