Never knowingly undersolved.

Independent 6564/Virgilius

Posted by neildubya on October 30th, 2007


More thematic wizardry from my favourite compiler: spot the colours in 6 across clues.

1 BROWN-NOSED – little bit of politics from Virgilius there.
10 TOT in LIES – LITOTES is one of those words I only know through crosswords. Chambers defines it as “understatement used for effect, especially by negating the opposite” and gives the example “not a little angry”.
12 (THE BIRDS WE ATE)* – WHITE BREASTED. On my first look I was tempted by WATER-something but then the theme began to suggest itself and WHITE seemed obvious with W???E filled in.
14 OHMAGE – “homage” with the initial letters swapped.
15 BLUE-EYED – a BLUE is an Oxbridge athlete that has competed for their university.
17 ED,F in RACED
19 NOB,ALL – a NO BALL is an extra in the crossword compiler’s favourite sport.
22 GREEN-FINGERED – sounds like “[Graham] Greene”
24 MAE WEST – one of the most chestnut-ty of all crossword chestnuts, but at least Virgilius tries to take a fresh approach to clueing it. It seems to be a hybrid clue containing a straight definition and another, more cryptic one.m
27 GREY-HEADED – sounds like “Gray”
2 hidden in “devOUT SWAMis”
3 T in (DUNGEON I HADNT)* – NOTHING DAUNTED. Not a phrase I was familiar with but once I’d settled on NOTHING for the first word, the remaining anagram fodder solved itself.
4 N,S in OPEC – the definition – “as a gamble” – is a bit tricky and export group for OPEC is not immediately obvious.
7 SAINTLY – this was a great clue, and very misleading. John, Paul and George were all saints (as well as Beatles) and Ringo wasn’t (a saint, that is).
9 AL’S,ACE RAIN in LORE – another great clue. The surface reading is excellent and very apposite and the handling of the cryptic elements is very well done.
13 GAMES in BOARDS – very well disguised definition: “Go, with others”.
16 ROTA,IDEM (all reversed) – IDEM is the Latin phrase for “as previously mentioned”.
20 (I AND DR O)* – ANDROID is pretty much all you can do with those letters.
21 AGE,C in NY
23 BIRD – double def. A HOBBY is a small species of falcon.

4 Responses to “Independent 6564/Virgilius”

  1. Wil Ransome says:

    SITE (26A)

    I couldn’t see what “Repeatedly” was doing here. It seems to be about site, cite and sight, but I can’t unravel it all.

  2. linxit says:

    Wil, you’re spot on (or at least, I agree with you!). Repeatedly indicates the double homophone, so if you talk about a tourist attraction, you cite a sight, and SITE is the location.

  3. linxit says:

    Neil, I’m not sure from your description whether you got the whole theme – all the thematic answers were descriptions of coloured body parts:


  4. neildubya says:

    Nope – completely missed that bit of it!

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