Posted by linxit on November 20th, 2007
I see that a lot of you took advantage of the chance to comment on this beforehand, so I’m glad I left the placeholder message this morning. As it turned out, I was able to finish it inside the 15 minutes I was able to snatch at lunchtime, and now have half an hour to spare to post it before facing the M40 tonight.
Quite a few ‘difficult’ words combined with some groan-inducing wordplay, but nothing really unfair unless you’re strictly Ximenean.
5 I,BERIA – the Soviet cop is Lavrentiy Pavlovich Beria, responsible for the death of tens of thousands during Stalin’s rule.
6 ALL,ICE – another name for the European shad. I just knew it was a fish.
9 (c)YCLE,PT – I already had the C and the T when I first looked at this clue, so the answer came to me quickly. I didn’t know it meant “called” before but I knew it was a word.
10 EARL(GRE=erg rev)Y – “About to” seems to be superfluous here, unless I’m missing something. [ Which I worked out eventually - see comment 16 below. ]
12 MA(SON)RY,BIT – great wordplay here, pregnant woman = SON inside MARY.
13 BROKEN HEART – reverse cryptic, OK being the heart (i.e. middle) of “broken”.
18 BRA(INST,OR)M – INST = “this month”, BRAM is Stoker’s christian name.
23 GLINKA (alking*) – Mikhail Glinka, the Russian composer.
25 L(IN)EAR – I suppose the play’s well-known enough to be referred to by only half its name.
3 CLARE,N(unnery),CE – CLARE is a poor girl because the Poor Clares are an order of nuns. Duke of Clarence is an extinct title first created in 1362.
5 IN,CO,ME – “infirm” = IN,CO. Many would disapprove, but you get used to it…
7 E, LEG IT – never heard of the word, but LEG IT for “run” has been used a lot lately, and I had both crossing E’s which gave me enough confirmation to be fairly confident.
8 NESSUN DORMA – apparently a homophone for “Nissan Dormer” – i.e. Dormobile, made by Bedford in the 1960′s. Quite possibly the worst homophone clue I’ve ever seen, but maybe the idea is that tributes don’t always sound like the real thing!
14 KE(STEVE)N – mayor for KEN (Livingstone) is quite common lately. I’d heard of the town, now I know what county it’s in!
20 ME,GRIM – is a severe headache.