Never knowingly undersolved.

Guardian 24,195 (Sat 29 Sep)/Enigmatist – A tangled web

Posted by rightback on October 6th, 2007


Solving time: 11:11

Lots of cryptic definitions today, a couple of which I don’t quite get, and a monster anagram at 2dn/7dn which I solved fairly late in proceedings.

Music (3dn): The Box by Orbital.

* = anagram, “X” = sounds like ‘X’.

1 BEW (rev. of WEB) + ITCH – ‘plot’ = WEB as in Walter Scott’s couplet, “O what a tangled web we weave / When first we practise to deceive”.
5 L(OBSTE[trics])R
9 RE + EVE – simple when you know the answer, but I needed all three crossing letters before realising how to interpret “Female flying”.
11 STROKE OF GENIUS (cryptic definition) – is there more to this than just a cryptic reference to the hyphen (= ‘stroke’)? W. Heath Robinson was a cartoonist best known for drawings of wacky machines.
13/22dn OVERSHOE (cryptic definition) – just a pun on ‘Oxford’ (a type of shoe), I think.
14 PEKINESE; (KEEPS E IN)* – one of those anagrams where one of the words has to be abbreviated, in this case ‘energy’ (giving the E). I’ve been caught out by a few of these recently.
17 DEAF EARS; (A + F) in (REDSEA)* – not sure how ‘across’ can mean ‘inside’.
18/1dn MINI + BARS
21 IT’S A SMALL WORLD (cryptic definition)
23 K(I + WIF[e] + RU)IT
24 RALPH – according to Chambers, “the imp of mischief in a printing house”.
25 ROYAL WE (cryptic definition) – ‘our number one’ being the Queen.
26 IN STY + LE – a sounder is a herd of pigs.
2/7 WHEN THE CAT’S AWAY THE MICE WILL PLAY; (WHY WE MEAN ATHLETIC CHEATS WILL PAY)*, &lit – the anagram reads very well, but I’m not quite convinced by the definition reading, which I guess is said from the point of view of straying husbands whose wives might misbehave in their absence.
3 THE BOX (cryptic definition) – perhaps someone with a telly can explain what The Box is?
4/16 HIDDEN TREASURE (cryptic definition) [amended; see comments] – ‘its closure’ being the X of ‘The Box’ which might mark the spot.
6/20 BULLET (= ‘part of round’) + INBOARDS (= ‘motors’) – a very slick clue, excellent wordplay and definition (‘Here view the latest’). My last solve.
8 ROTISSERIE (cryptic definition)
12 HOO(D + WIN)KER – ‘pro’ = ‘prostitute’.
15 SENSEFUL; rev. of ESNES + (FLU)*
19 GLUTEI; GLUT + rev. of I.E.

4 Responses to “Guardian 24,195 (Sat 29 Sep)/Enigmatist – A tangled web”

  1. Shirley says:

    3D In the Sixties there was a TV game hosted by Michael Miles called “Take Your Pick”. Contestants were invited to either take the money or open the box which meant either take the safe bet (the money) or take a chance on what might be in the box. Open the box became a very popular catch phrase at the time.

  2. Guardianista says:

    4/16 Hidden treasure surely, not treasure trove.

  3. rightback says:

    4/16dn – Er… yes. Why did I write that? Thanks – amended above.
    3dn – thanks. Seems like a better choice of music would have been “What’s In The Box?” by the Boo Radleys but I can’t find that anywhere online, so let’s celebrate this afternoon’s triumph with another look at this instead. Come on England!!

  4. roland says:

    I can’t say I cared for STROKE OF GENIUS, witty though it was. Other clues also struck me as slightly “random”- I nearly gave up on this one, but got my act together eventually. As so often, I thank the inventors of Tippex.

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