Fifteensquared

Never knowingly undersolved.

Archive for November, 2007

Anagram Friday

Posted by neildubya on 30th November 2007

neildubya.

Not having been lucky enough to get a crossword to solve for a while I was slightly disappointed that this one was so undemanding. I got through it in under 8 minutes. Still it gave a gentle ending to the week, and it meant I didn’t wear out my brain before Saturday’s, which may well be more challenging!Across

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Posted in Guardian | 5 Comments »

Independent 6591/Eimi – Italian Job

Posted by neildubya on 30th November 2007

neildubya.

Nice puzzle from The Editor with a theme that revealed itself in two parts for me: first, cities then Italian cities. Plaudits for getting so many in, especially when so many of them end in awkward letters like I and O. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Independent | 1 Comment »

Independent 6586/Nimrod (24-11-07)

Posted by neildubya on 30th November 2007

neildubya.

I know next to nothing about horse-racing so once I’d twigged the theme I had to use Google to check a couple of answers that I got from the wordplay (1a and 28a). There are still 4 clues that I don’t understand though. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Independent | 12 Comments »

Beelzebub 927/Columba (18-11-07)

Posted by neildubya on 30th November 2007

neildubya.

A very enjoyable puzzle from a very reliable setter. It might be my imagination but there seemed to be a few more obscure words than there usually are in Beelzebub puzzles but I actually found this easier than a typical Columba effort; maybe because harder words meant easier wordplay? Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Beelzebub | No Comments »

Inquisitor 47 – Missing Letter by Schadenfreude

Posted by duncanshiell on 29th November 2007

duncanshiell.

The preamble stated that ‘before solving, one letter must be changed in the definition part of 25 clues, the new letters all being different.  The missing 26th letter is to be revealed as required by the completed grid.”

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Posted in Inquisitor | 5 Comments »

Independent 6590 by Merlin

Posted by nmsindy on 29th November 2007

nmsindy.

An excellent puzzle, as usual, from this top setter. Solving time: 19 mins

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Posted in Independent | 6 Comments »

Independent on Sunday 928 by Quixote

Posted by nmsindy on 29th November 2007

nmsindy.

A St Andrew’s Day theme in the appropriate week. One or two tricky clues, but I found it fairly easy overall. Solving time: 16 mins.

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Posted in Independent | No Comments »

Financial Times 12,618 by Cincinnus

Posted by Pete Maclean on 29th November 2007

Pete Maclean.

Another lovely puzzle from Cincinnus. I particularly like 13A, 19A, 25A and 5D. I found 26A and 20D hard.

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Posted in FT | 2 Comments »

Independent 6589/Dac

Posted by neildubya on 28th November 2007

neildubya.
Across
4 SCHNAPPS – cleverly done. A drunkard might pronounce “snaps” (pictures = shots) as SCHNAPPS. The literal reading works too.
10 D in LANG,RAVE – this was new to me but fairly easy once I stopped thinking about Lean (ie, David) as the film director. A LANDGRAVE is a count that has jurisdiction over certain territory.
11 VIE in GENEVE – I think I vaguely knew that GENEVIEVE was a film but I couldn’t tell you anything about it.
13 CHEST in GRANTER
17 (SOUTHERN [-M]EDOC)* – nice anagram but it was the clue enumeration that helped me get this one. Can’t really avoid that I suppose.
24 SWILL – the last one in for me, and I wasn’t completely convinced about it at the time although I am now. Pigs’ SWILL is made from scraps so I guess that counts as “refuse” and a SWILL is a gulp of beer or other alcohol.
26 W,EIGHT
 
Down
1 ENG in (EAGER)* – really good clue, with a good surface: “Sign up again, eager for training to include engineering”.
2 MAD ON,N,AS – once I’d worked out that “really into” was MAD ON, then MADONNAS had to be the answer but it took me a while after that to spot “when” for AS.
3 KIR,OV[-er]
5 S in (MONK DECLINED)* – wasted some time assuming that “Monk” was the definition. I kicked myself when I finally saw CONDENSED MILK as I had written out the remaining anagram fodder and MILK should have leapt out at me from that.
6 (WEIGHT RAN)* – oddly enough, I got this (from the definition) before I got 26A.
10 L,I,ECHT,E[-i]NSTEIN – easy enough to get from “Learner” indicating something beginning with L and the fact that we’re looking for a 13 letter place in Europe but the wordplay is not so obvious. ECHT means genuine or authentic and “clever fellow, one given promotion” means move an I in EINSTEIN up a bit. OK, it’s slightly vague but, for me at least, the wordplay confirmed the answer rather than led to it.
14 T,ER in ROUSED
19 W in CREEL – quite a tough clue so I’m glad I knew that CREEL is something for holding bobbins in a spinning machine. “With” for W is tricky to spot too as it’s so often used as a link word.

Posted in Independent | 1 Comment »

Guardian 24246/Orlando – A rum clue

Posted by ilancaron on 28th November 2007

ilancaron.

A good puzzle to learn a few new words via clear wordplay (e.g. SATINY, ASGARD, COLUMBA). One unusual river (AMUR) and an unfamiliar actress (ANNA NEAGLE) and a couple of other more familiar dramatic characters (the BARRYMORES, SONDHEIM and IAN FLEMING).
Across Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Guardian | 8 Comments »

FT 12,626/Quark

Posted by smiffy on 28th November 2007

smiffy.

Just when you thought that the FT blogs had become extinct…. Apologies for going AWOL last week, when short-notice travel plans scuppered my schedule again. Incidentally, the FT puzzles seem to have become freely available online (they required a site-subscription until quite recently); for anyone who desperately needs a stash of extra puzzles, the index can be found here.

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Posted in FT | 3 Comments »

Guardian 24,245 – Gordius : “This island race, this happy breed”

Posted by neildubya on 27th November 2007

neildubya.

Apologies if you checked in earlier – a work crisis of Biblical proportions had wiped out my leisure time and my solution was sparse.

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Posted in Guardian | 12 Comments »

Independent 6587/Virgilius – Tuesday 26.11.07 – Recurring Melodies

Posted by John on 27th November 2007

John.

The usual brilliant crossword from Virgilius. His clues are consistently excellent, but there is nearly always a very clever theme, which is usually signposted by the fact that the grid is a bit unusual (although recently we have been having quite a lot of sub-50% checking). For this theme see below. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Independent | 17 Comments »

Independent No 6587 by Tees – Paradise Made Difficult

Posted by NealH on 26th November 2007

NealH.

I found this very tough, although the Milton theme helped a lot if you were at all familiar with his work. My favourite clue was 25 – a superbly hidden anagram. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Independent | 18 Comments »

Guardian 24,244, Rufus: high tea?

Posted by michod on 26th November 2007

michod.

A gentle start to the week as ever. Most of the clues are pretty straightforward, so I’ve only given a few explanations – more can be supplied on request.

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Posted in Guardian | 3 Comments »