Never knowingly undersolved.

Independent No 6587 by Tees – Paradise Made Difficult

Posted by NealH on November 26th, 2007


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.

8 Firewood: “ire” in “f” + Wood (I believe it’s a reference to Elijah Wood, who played Frodo in the Lord of the Rings films)
15 Grandpa: Grand (piano) + pa. Is pa an abbreviation for piano ?
17 Revelry: “Re” + “very” around “l”
20 Children: “Chile” around “dr” + “N” (newton is the SI unit for pressure)
22 Bodega: Aged + Ob reversed
23 Dotted Line: I was a bit unsure about this. I suppose a dash with a dot in it would be against the Morse code, but I was unclear about the overall def.
26 Nineteen: Slightly bizarre clue, I thought. I suppose you were supposed to think “20” referred to 20 across.
1 Minotaur: Minor around tau. It helped if you knew who Pasiphae was.
2 Test: Double definition (the Test being a river in Hampshire).
7 Parsec: “Parse” + c (speed of light constant)
13 Monolithic: (o Milton)* + hic (which I believe is latin for “this”)
16/10 Paradise Lost: The themed clue, which was fairly easy to get if you know Milton’s work at all. (Ideal spot as)* around “r” (last of tempter)
18 Regained: The other Milton themed clue. Seems to be three definitions (won back + rained around “eg”).
19 Ancient: Very tough clue. Apparently, an ancient is a type of flag.

18 Responses to “Independent No 6587 by Tees – Paradise Made Difficult”

  1. neildubya says:

    Glad I wasn’t the only one who found it tough. Lots of very good clues but I thought 16/10 was excellent.

  2. nmsindy says:

    GRANDPA GRAND P (pianos) A (are = metric measure), I think. Very tough puzzle with less than 50% checking eg REVELRY which was fiendish.

  3. Testy says:

    The SI unit for pressure is the pascal (Pa). The Newton (N) the SI unit for force.

  4. Fletch says:

    And for those of us that don’t have the benefit of knowing what 25 was …?

    Otherwise this forum’s a bit of a closed shop.

  5. Wil Ransome says:

    I don’t know what’s happened to Tees – he used to be quite easy but his last two have been as difficult as any I’ve come across in the Indy.

    What is Fletch’s point? Is he asking someone to explain 25? If so, it seems to be def. “virtuoso”, (using e)*, the anagram indicated (a bit doubtfully?) by “device”.

  6. Testy says:

    I guess Fletch might have been wondering what the clue and answer were. For those of us that don’t buy all the papers but do enjoy reading the blogs it is sometimes a little frustrating when a posting/comment says that a certain clue was the most wonderful ever but fails to share it so that we can all admire the genius of it.

    Similarly when someone says that they have failed to work out the wordplay/answer it would also be helpful if they could post the full clue to give us all a bash at helping.

  7. Pogel says:

    Nice site, but I agree that it can be mildly irritating when one reads “teasers”. However, I appreciate you can’t give away the whole crossword. Having said that, could someone print the clue to 16/10? Many thanks.

  8. Fletch says:

    Testy has understood exactly what I meant. The blogger refers to 25 being his favourite clue, a superbly hidden anagram, then there’s no further mention of it.

  9. Nealh says:

    I find it interesting that people read the blog even though they haven’t attempted the crossword. I would have thought that, to get anything out of it at all, you would have to have a copy of the puzzle open in front of you. I’m also slightly loth to write out clues in case it breaks copyright laws. However, I’ll try to put in more detail in future.

  10. Mitch says:

    Oh dear. I agree that this was very difficult, and felt quite proud of myself for completing it, until reading the blog, realised that 19d is Ancient. Was I the only one who wrote in Insigne, which means Emblem, which I took to be a flag? Just as well it wasn’t a prize crossword. I knew ancients were Greeks and Romans, but couldn’t associate the (Hebrew) flag.

  11. nmsindy says:

    Re Nealh’s point at 9, I don’t think quoting a clue now and again will break any copyright laws – it’s like reviewing a book in a newspaper. I quote a clue if it’s really special or if I’m looking for an explanation of it (which someone usually provides!). And, yes, to get the full benefit of the blog you’d need to have the puzzle, I think.

  12. Fletch says:

    I’m not a regular Indy solver Neal, if I’m out and about and pass a newspaper display and happen to think of it I’ll check and see who the setter is and if I fancy it I’ll treat myself.

    This wasn’t the case yesterday but I’m always interested to read the blog and see what I’ve missed.

  13. Testy says:

    … whereas I’m afraid I’m just a sad busy-bodying no-life who likes to chip in his two cents as often as possible but is too much of a cheapskate to buy papers (I just do the one’s I can pick up for free at work).

  14. Tees says:

    Hello. Matters domestic have dominated the week, forcing me to neglect my obsessions. Thanks for the helpful remarks, including the one about me getting tougher.

    (One of) the clue(s) some of you liked, but others had not seen, was

    Whereof Milton’s ideal spot, as corrupt, provides haven for Tempter at last? (8,4)

    which is R in IDEAL/SPOT/AS*. MILTON appeared in three consecutive clues (once as fodder) but wasn’t really supposed to seem a theme (next one down is a def relating to another of JM’s poems – kissing the cheeks of the Restored King I guess – plus EG in RAINED.)

    Other things mentioned include the clue to GENIUS, which uses a nounal anagind plus indirect indication for one of the letters. I don’t think there’s much unusual about either method (although you should remember that I’m a child of the Grauniad!).

    ANCIENT is a double def – the Greeks, Romans and Hebrews are the Ancients named in Collins and Chambers. And yes, ENSIGN is the older (ho ho) word.

    Pianos – thanks NMS – are (ho) GRAND and P.

    DOTTED LINE: ‘In Morse a rule broken?’ offers you the fantastically cryptic idea that A in Morse Code is a line after a dot, plus: a rule (or line) broken (or dotted) is a dotted line. I admit that one is quite hard.

    NINETEEN, by contrast, had been intended to bemuse through being stupidly easy (something I must remember not to be as I maraud the apparently friendly streets of Peckham).


  15. Testy says:

    I agree that there isn’t anything wrong with a nounal anagram indicator, providing the noun sufficiently indicates rearrangement, e.g.

    “doorknob” – v. bad
    “mixture” – v. good
    “lamppost” – v. bad
    “organisation” – v. good
    “device” – ……the jury’s still out but it doesn’t look promising!

  16. Nealh says:

    Device is defined as:

    1. a thing made for a particular purpose; an invention or contrivance, esp. a mechanical or electrical one.
    2. a plan or scheme for effecting a purpose.
    3. a crafty scheme; trick.
    4. a particular word pattern, figure of speech, combination of word sounds, etc., used in a literary work to evoke a desired effect or arouse a desired reaction in the reader: rhetorical devices.
    5. something elaborately or fancifully designed.
    6. a representation or design used as a heraldic charge or as an emblem, badge, trademark, or the like.
    7. a motto.
    8. Archaic. devising; invention.

    You could probably make a case under most of those definitions. 3) and 5) would have a fairly strong case, I think.

  17. Testy says:

    I still don’t feel any of those definitions sufficiently indicate rearrangement. For example I would be far happier with “redesign” rather than just “design” but each to his own.

  18. Tees says:

    I don’t know about that: ‘doorknob’ for example I probably wouldn’t consider, even if it were my own.

    ‘Hatstand’ – well, that’s different.

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