Fifteensquared

Never knowingly undersolved.

Independent 6623/Virgilius

Posted by John on January 8th, 2008

John.
Across
1 LATIN AMERICAN – (certain animal)*. This suggests the theme – all the across answers are Latin words, many of which have an American connection. I think this is all.
9 CAPITOL – (topical)*. It used to be a Roman temple but now it’s a US government building. Virgilius (unlike Azed) has the view that nounal anagram indicators are OK (I rather agree with him), and takes advantage of this here.
11 ABSCISSAE – (CIA bases)*. Cunningly concealed noun, when one was expecting a verb. An abscissa is the x co-ordinate (see here).
12 CO rev. TAD I think. An octad is a collection of eight, but how nine is connected with the Supreme Court I’m not sure.
14 E PLURIBUS UNUM, a motto that appears on US coins
18 (CARESS A)* PAL ACE. Caesars Palace is a famous Las Vegas hotel.
23 AL(MA MA)TER
26 EXPA(R)T E – I think “exile” is a noun here
28 I think this is PER CENT, but I don’t really see why, beyond the fact that a percentage of something is a proportion of it
29 SEMPER FIDELIS, the motto of the US Marine Corps; in English it means “always faithful”.
 
Down
1 LAPPS – “Lapse”
2 T in (ATTIRE)*. Lovely simple good &lit.
3 (LL) in SUN rev. Not a very common word used as a verb, but it’s there.
4 MASSEUSES – I think this is just a cryptic def.
6 CAT is hidden in each of the words
7 NO-SIDE – Edison rev. A strange word – you never hear football commentators use it, but it is I think used in rugby.
8 SCRA(P)PED – it took me ages to see why; I couldn’t understand “scred”.
16 BE AWARE OF – (Arab foe we)*
17 SECRETE – simply two meanings I think
19 E (UP TREE)* – Euterpe was one of the muses
20 ADMIRAL – Pinkerton was a naval officer in Madam Butterfly. The butterfly reference is to the Red Admiral and the White Admiral.
21 DIVERS – two meanings
24 MOP(P)ED
25 TRESS – a forTRESS is a secure place. Good clue that took me some while to understand.
27 P AM

9 Responses to “Independent 6623/Virgilius”

  1. nmsindy says:

    MASSEUSES is USE in MASSES, I think. The US Supreme Court may have nine judges. Great puzzle as always from Virgilius.

  2. nmsindy says:

    PS Did anyone else confidently write in PRO RATA first for the PER CENT one? Getting SECRETE (I agree it’s a double definition) showed me I was wrong.

  3. neildubya says:

    Put me down for PRO RATA – although I can’t say that I wrote it in completely confidently. And it was 20d rather than 17d which pointed me to my mistake.

    Tougher than the average V I thought.

  4. Jon says:

    Unfamiliar phrases such as 14ac and 29ac made this a tricky one for me. Gave up about three quarters complete before coming here.

    15d and 22ac have got me stumped. The former I think might be lucre, but can’t explain why, apart from the R for river?

    Jon

  5. neildubya says:

    15d – LUC(R)E is right. A luce is a fully grown pike.

    22a – ID EST (or i.e.), hidden in “MississippI DESTroyed”.

  6. Jos says:

    Hi Jon,

    15d – a luce is another name for a pike, so lucre’s correct.
    22ac – id est latin, part of Mississippi destroyed.

    Cheers

  7. Jos says:

    Beaten to it!

  8. Jon says:

    Thanks – both Google and Chambers online failed me when I look up Luce.

    Jon

  9. nmsindy says:

    Luce: It was a new word to me too – got it working backwards from LUCRE, but it’s in both Concise OED and Collins.

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