Never knowingly undersolved.

Azed 1848 – never did the pogo

Posted by ilancaron on November 3rd, 2007


I was bamboozled by the NW corner and had to resort to an email friend (in this case, PeterB) largely because I fell into the trap of RUMBA for our Cuban dance at 13A which was inevitable given RU??A. As per usual, Azed’s wordplay is prescriptive thus leading more or less to the answer – however unfamliar and surprising it might be (OK except for RUEDA). The things to note in this puzzle are the use of A for “one”, ‘T for “it” and ‘S for “has”.

Overall, I found quite a bit of tough wordplay (not all of which I’ve worked out — thanks to comments, now mostly resolved) even when I’d found the definition.


1 SCOTCH, MIST=”missed” – it’s “something insubstantial” according to the Big Red Book.
10 P.O.,GO – 70’s punk dancing and P.O. is Postal Order which apparently Billy Bunter waited in vain for, promising his friends of its imminent arrival (Peter has to provide the gloss for this — I even read the Billy Bunnter wikipedia page to no avail).
11 OMADHAUN – (human, ado)* — it’s Irish for fool.
13 RUED,A – see above — RUE also means to change one’s mind and (lower-case) A is in the BRB as an abbrevation of afternoon.
14 V,ERST – “A VERST is an obsolete Russian unit of length. It is defined as being 500 sazhen long, which makes a verst equal to 3500 feet (1.0668 kilometres).” Which in case you’re wondering means that a sazhen is 7 feet — which might or might not be useful knowledge. (Perhaps the NBA should introduce the sazhen as a standard unit of measurement).
16 SHARP,EI=rev(i.e.) – it’s a big dog
17 NI(CE)NE – “one over the eight” is NINE, though since “the” is a bit superfluous I suspect a topical allusion ref “the eight” that escapes me. Ref. the 325AD ecumenical council in Asia Minor as any fule kno.
18 BRI(AR)S – I thought I understood the wordplay when I solved this but it’s since vanished: def is “pipes”: “Pipes Arab, lively making circuit, docked”. It’s actually AR for Arab in BRIS[k] which I saw last week and then promptly forgot.
20 GLOBULIN – (Null big O)*: ref. Gamma GLOBULIN (“big O” actually means something in computer science but I doubt that’s the case in biology).
22 ‘S,C,UTTLER=turtle* – I think “has” is just “‘S” here and C is “caught”.
25 NEE,DER = rev(red, e’en) and ref. red sky at night, shepherd’s delight — so I suppose E’EN for evening for night is valid given the “poetically” qualifier.
26 L(A,TIN)O – when in doubt open a tin, at least that’s my culinary philosophy.
28 GADR(O,O)N – OO in grand* and it means indeed ornamental edging.
31 CURIA – another religious ref (see 17) – CURIA was a Roman tribal senate house but I don’t see the wordplay: “From when the city was founded (going back) Queen/Emperor installed senate house”. See explanatory comments below — RI for Queen/Emperor did occur to me at one point but I couldn’t find I=Imperator in C (probably didn’t look hard enough) which wouldn’t have been enough anyway since AUC would have remained a mystery.
32 OMLAH – hidden in “frOM LAHore” — I suppose an &lit since Lahore qualifies as S. Asian and OMLAH means Indian staff.  
33 [f]OR(A)TRESS – I suppose that’s a positive spin on Thatcher’s legacy, as a powerful ORATRESS. Note that A is “one” here (which The Times wouldn’t allow).
34 E(R)GO – My fav clue for its elegance, surprising definition and sensible surface. Defining ERGO as “what comes with premises” is clever and “I” is EGO.
35 WE(A,THERM)EN – WEEN is archaic “think” and THERM is an archaic public bath. But what about the definition: “Fish etc”? Ref. Brit weatherman Michael Fish.


1 SPRING,ING COW=(Wing Co.)* – a SPRINGING COW is indeed a cow about to calf and Ayshire is just type thereof (so a misdirection to a Scots word).
2 COU(TILL)E – Emile COUE was a pioneer of autosuggestion if I don’t say so myself. COUTILLE is a strong fabric.
3 TODDE – Spenserian weight of wool. Compound anag: (Oddments ‘e)*=(todde,men’s)*.
4 CO(A)X – A for “one” again and COAX is short for coaxial cable.
5 MAZHBI – (biz ham)*, it’s a low-caste Sikh.
6 SHERI[f],AT – Islamic law is Sharia or SHERIAT. The guy (probably always a man) making them is SHERIF and I suppose AT indicates studying.
7 ‘T,AR(PAUL)IN – PAUL (our boy) in rain* and “it briefly” is “‘T”. A “sou’wester” is a TARPAULIN hat.
8 RUSE – it’s a trick that does for but I don’t see what I believe must be a homophone… “Trick that does for old men relying on hearing”. There’s some speculation that it’s a “sight homophone” (oxymoronic?) for “roues”??
9 ANTI(STRO=sort*)PHON – ANTIPHON is “alternate singing” and the whole thing is an argumentative Greek type of retort.
12 MOSEL – compound anagram: (Mosel, alone)*=(a lemon sole)*. Must be an &lit but I’m not an expert of what wines to drink with fish.
15 SCORE D,RAW – this came up in a Rufus or Paul recently.
19 [g]REENGAGE – greengage is a sweet green plum.
21 BEDR(IT)E – IT (shades of sex appeal??) in breed*. It’s what you used to be able to demand in bed I guess. A cup of tea?
23 CRONE,T[his] – a CRONE is an “old ewe” and the whole thing is indeed hair on a hoof. Two obscure words made this tough.
24 U.L.N.A.S – not in Chambers but the easiest clue of the lot.
27 TI(M)ER – wasn’t sure about M for noon but it’s simply meridiem.
29 [l]AURA – it’s what you get before a migraine or hysteria. Spenser is usually our advanced cryptic poet so this is ref. his beloved Laura in The Faeire Queene and sonnets.
30 TO,S,E – TOSE is alt. spelling of TOZE: to card, tease out, comb.

6 Responses to “Azed 1848 – never did the pogo”

  1. linxit says:

    17ac: “One over the eight” is an expression meaning to have one drink too many. It’s in Chambers under eight.
    18ac: AR for Arab inside BRIS(k)
    35ac: Michael Fish is a well-known British weatherman. Or was, he’s retired now.
    5dn: The answer’s actually MAZHBI, and an anagram of “biz ham”, but I’m sure that’s just a typo in the blog.
    8dn: I think he’s trying a sight homophone here of roués! The only thing I could think of anyway…but then why “relying on hearing?”

  2. nmsindy says:

    Re 35ac and Micheal Fish, look at the review of Inquisitor 42 on this site. A coincidence, I think.

  3. Phi says:

    Spent some time worrying about RUSE too. But the homophone I eventually ended up with was ROOS, on the basis of a sudden memory of a song or story about Old Man Kangaroo. I didn’t check it at the time, but I just have, and C does have it.

  4. Fred Safier says:

    You say you don’t understand the wordplay in CURIA.
    It’s in Latin.

    AUC = Anno Urbis Condita (the year the city was founded).
    R/I = Regina/Imperator = Queen/Emperor.


  5. roland says:

    Petrarch rather than Spenser? ?

  6. ilancaron says:

    Roland’s probably right that the reference in 29D was to Petrarch rather than Spenser (at least based on (see “Laura and poetry”) but there are certainly references to beloved LAURA in Spenser’s sonnets and FQ. I wonder what Azed intended.

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