Never knowingly undersolved.

Archive for October, 2007

Independent on Sunday 923 by Quixote

Posted by nmsindy on 25th October 2007


A pleasing offering from Quixote – will comment on a small number of what I found the trickier or best clues, but happy to explain others if asked.

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Posted in Independent | No Comments »

Financial Times 12,588 by Mudd

Posted by Pete Maclean on 25th October 2007

Pete Maclean.

A solid and satisfying puzzle from Mudd this week.


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Posted in FT | 1 Comment »

Guardian 24216/Brendan – in a Nobel cause

Posted by linxit on 24th October 2007


Solving time approx 16 mins.

I spotted 10 winners of the Nobel Peace Prize – I think that’s all there are in it. And of course 8dn gives a strong hint to the theme. A lot of the featured Nobel laureates are given brilliant &lit clues, e.g. 1,22; 6; 11; 16; 20,27.

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Posted in Guardian | 5 Comments »

Independent 6559 by Dac

Posted by nmsindy on 24th October 2007


An excellent puzzle from Dac, one of the top setters. Solving time: 21 mins

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Posted in Independent | 4 Comments »

Independent 6558/Virgilius

Posted by neildubya on 23rd October 2007


Cryptic crossword setters often borrow terminology from the world of 2D so a bridge-themed puzzle seems very appropriate. This cleverly constructed grid contains NORTH SOUTH EAST WEST in the places you would expect them to be, as well as the four playing card 24A and NO TRUMPS. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Independent | 4 Comments »

Guardian No 24,215/Puck – the good, the bad and the ugly?

Posted by loonapick on 23rd October 2007


In my opinion, a mixture of brilliant clues (5, 10, 20) and some of the things I don’t like so much in puzzles (14, 24) and a couple of clues where I’m not sure if they are good or not (13, 19)

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Posted in Guardian | 14 Comments »

Guardian 24214/Rufus – not iffy

Posted by ilancaron on 22nd October 2007


A typical balanced Rufus opus with sensible surfaces and no cryptic definition overdose. And pleasantly not a rugby reference in sight. My last clue was 24A since my only exposure to opera so far has been via this medium.

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Posted in Guardian | 1 Comment »

Independent 6557/Math

Posted by neildubya on 22nd October 2007

6 EVA< in STS – “Mrs Peron” made this a very easy clue but “bars” was an ambiguous definition in the phrase “street’s bars”.
9 REC,(PIE)*
10 U,N in NEARED
11 IF in FE – a reminder that it’s useful for cryptic solvers to have a smattering of chemical symbols committed to memory. In this case: “Fe” is iron.
12 (THE LAST FEE)* – fairly easy anagram to spot and solve.
13 VAMPIRE BAT – cryptic def.
16 E,XI,T – nice clue, with a (usually) apt surface reading.
20 E,R,C in WA[-i]TRESS – the clue is a bit of a mouthful but it reads nicely and is cryptically sound.
23 B OR N – when I solved this I thought the wordplay was (BR[ight]ON)* and I remember thinking it wasn’t a very good clue as it was a bit vague and there was no anagrind. I was obviously wrong about all that.
24 FAMILIA[L for R]
25 hidden in “minstREL ENTertainer”
2 CIDER (going up) in PATE – I was a bit surprised to see CIDER actually appear in the clue (albeit reversed), although it’s just as well that it did as I wasn’t having any luck thinking of 5 letter alternatives for it.
3 hidden in “zebRA IS Extinct” – “of” is the blink-and-you’ll-miss-it hidden indicator.
4 REEF in TERNS – I hit upon TERNS for “sea-birds” fairly quickly but didn’t see REEF for “sandbank” for a good while after that.
15 RT<,E,A,SURE,R – an excellent clue and a very neat bit of deception here as the surface reading makes you think of Neville Chamberlain. However, a chamberlain is a TREASURER of a corporation or company. Here’s the full clue, for those that haven’t seen the puzzle: “Chamberlain was right to return having obtained peace finally and a certain end to war“. Great stuff.
21 A,G,APE – which can mean “Christian, brotherly love”.
23 L,S in BAA

Posted in Independent | 12 Comments »

Private Eye/Cyclops 350 – Brothers and mothers

Posted by beermagnet on 22nd October 2007


This issue brought us the usual fare in the style we come to expect from our optically-challenged friend. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Private Eye/Cyclops | 2 Comments »

Independent on Sunday 922 by Quixote

Posted by nmsindy on 21st October 2007


Reasonably straightforward puzzle, I found. Solving time: 17 mins

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Posted in Independent | No Comments »

Azed 1846

Posted by linxit on 21st October 2007


Solving time about 35 mins, with Chambers and Bradford’s.

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Posted in Azed | 3 Comments »

Inquisitor 41 – Alterations by Phi

Posted by petebiddlecombe on 20th October 2007


Solving time: about 2 hours

At last, a fairly gentle Inquisitor, which I should really have finished off even faster – and earlier! The thematic answers were to have one letter replaced, and then to be altered in some other unspecified way. A good rule in cases like this is to consider the simplest options first. Sure enough, it fairly soon became clear that the second alteration was reversal, which has the right number of letters to match the “original letters, in clue order, spell” bit of the preamble. Reversing words ties with anagrams as probably the commonest tranformation used.

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Posted in Inquisitor | 2 Comments »

Guardian 24,207 (Sat 13 Oct)/Enigmatist – Double entendre

Posted by rightback on 20th October 2007


Solving time: 15 mins, one missing (3dn)

Another puzzle with an epic answer, this time 14 words long (perhaps certain compilers at the Guardian are having a bit of a competition?), and beautifully integrated with all the parts symmetrically placed. I didn’t know the song, which made the whole puzzle a difficult solve for me, not assisted by initial wrong answers at 22dn and 27dn and a knowledge gap at 3dn.

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Posted in Guardian | No Comments »

Independent 6550/Nimrod

Posted by neildubya on 20th October 2007


Very Nimrod. I’m fairly sure all the answers are right but I have my doubts about 8A and 4D is still a mystery to me. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Independent | 10 Comments »

Guardian 24212/Brendan – hope you like rugby

Posted by ilancaron on 19th October 2007


I suspect that much of England has rugby on its mind even though it’s being played in France (conveniently beaten by the English last week or so). It appears that Brendan does as well. Virtually all the clues have a rugby surface. Also conveniently, rugby and American football share quite a bit of vocabulary so this puzzle is pretty transatlantic. So quite straightforward from the definition point of view — I’ve left a couple of wordplays to be worked out as we speak. It goes without saying that Brendan is the master of the clever sensible rewarding clue.

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Posted in Guardian | 4 Comments »