Fifteensquared

Never knowingly undersolved.

Archive for March, 2008

Independent Crossword No 6694 by Hypnos

Posted by NealH on 31st March 2008

NealH.

* = anag, < = reversed, () = dropped

A moderately difficult puzzle with a couple of excellent clues in 3 and 22 dn. There was one I didn’t quite follow (12 down). Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Independent | 6 Comments »

Guardian 24,350 – Brendan

Posted by manehi on 31st March 2008

manehi.

Mostly straightforward from Brendan today, some easy anagrams and a couple of hidden words – I was racing towards one of my quicker times until I ran into 2 down.

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Guardian | 6 Comments »

Azed 1869 / Plain – Stiff Challenge

Posted by tilsit on 30th March 2008

tilsit.

Solving Time: 55 minutes (with assistance on two clues from the wonderful Eric)

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Azed | 5 Comments »

Private Eye/Cyclops 361 – 3 Queens

Posted by beermagnet on 30th March 2008

beermagnet.
Across
1 OFFBEAT OFF-BEAT I liked “copper back in the station”
5 ODD FISH Perch is a FISH, and 3 is an ODD number, and John Redwood is …
10 BLOOD MONEY M-ONE (chief of Manchester United) inside BLOODY (bleeding)
11 NAVY V[ery] inside NAY – I think. Originally I was thinking vaguely of an old warmonger who gained a reputation for use of the cat, but there was no Admiral Nay that I can find – I must’ve been conflating Marshal Ney. So how does this work? Full clue:
Sailors strapping chap, very taken (4)
Dan points out that the “strapping chap” is a NAVVY and the V[ery] has been taken away.
12 EMINENCE EMINE[m] N[elly] C (hundred) E(uros)
13 REEFER REEF (spit) ER (Brenda)
14 BOSS DD
16 CRUMPET RUMP inside (ETC)*
18 ISTHMUS (SHIT)* (SUM)<
21 ROWS Homophone “Woes” when Jonathan Ross says it
23 WALLOP WA (Washington state abbr.) (POLL)< Here we go again equating decent ale with piss. The many pints of wallop I’ve had have been brilliant!
24 THE QUEEN T[ickle] HE (male) QUEEN (homosexual) HRH getting a name-check that isn’t Brenda for a change
26 SHOE O (ball) inside SHE (female) I’m not sure if the final question mark is necessary.
27 CHECK DIGIT Couple of good offbeat definitions. Full clue:
Examine member – it might get stuck into a PC (5,5)
28 SMUGGLE MUG (dick) inside (LEGS)*
29 CRUNCHY C (about) R[a]UNCHY
 
Down
2 FULL MOON DD
4 ALMANAC AL (Gore) M[onica] AN (one) AC (Bill)
6 DAY TRIP (Robin) DAY TRIP (error)
7 FAN LETTER A[ct] N[ervously] L[egs] inside FETTER This was a close second for the favourite clue:
Starts to act nervously, legs in shackle, enveloped by admirer? (3,6)
8 SOVIET VIE (compete) inside SOT (drunk). This was the last I put in. I was misled by “drunk” to try anagrams of “old Russian” etc. but it’s a solid answer once you know it. As a result I’ll give it the favourite clue award. Full clue:
Compete – but hemmed in by drunk old Russian (6)
9/3 KNEES UP MOTHER BROWN KNEES UP (party) MOTHER (mum) BROWN (PM) On first sight of this crossword I went straight to this long answer and it was apparent immediately. The “mum” = “mother” part was a complete give-away for me.
15 SPIELBERG SPIEL (pitch) (B[UG]GER)* UG = “what caveman said”. I wonder if Spielberg will ever do a caveman pic? It’d be much better than the latest offering, 10,000 B.C., whose release was timed to coincide with this clue. The clue is far better than the movie.
17 SWEETISH S[ulphur] WEE (SHIT)* Two anagrams of shit in one crossy and neither making “this” – that’s OK by me
19 TOPICAL TOP (bust) [mon]ICA [bil]L Yet another ref. to Clinton+Lewinsky – I think this one’s getting long in the tooth now
20 SPEAKER S (second) PEAK (climax) ER (Brenda)
22 MAYHEM (Dr Brian) MAY HEM (“bit of skirt”) Ref. the well-known astrophysicist, OBE and Chancellor of Liverpool Uni. who plays a bit of guitar as well
25 UNION CD

Posted in Private Eye/Cyclops | 2 Comments »

Guardian 24,343 (Sat 22 Mar)/Araucaria – Lies, Damned Lies and Counterchecks Quarrelsome

Posted by rightback on 30th March 2008

rightback.

Solving time: About 40 minutes (interrupted); two wrong (30ac and 44dn), one missing (42dn)

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Guardian | 7 Comments »

Independent 6692 Phi / Weekend Warm Up

Posted by tilsit on 28th March 2008

tilsit.

Solving time: 29 minutes

I found it quite a challenge today and a suitable warm-up for the new Listener due in a wee while.  Am a bit baffled about parsing 9 down, my guess is shown, but I think I’m wide of the mark.

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Independent | 1 Comment »

Independent 6687/Virgilius (22-03-08)

Posted by neildubya on 28th March 2008

neildubya.

4/14 provided the theme for this enjoyable puzzle, which I found a bit tougher than usual for this setter. What’s a bit strange though is that I count 13 men’s names in the grid: LUKE, JOHN, EDDIE, NICHOLAS, BASIL, ANDREW, JAMES, GEORGE, DAVID, PAUL, PETER, LAWRENCE and MARK. Which makes me wonder if I’ve got one of them wrong…? [Edit: as eimi points out below, Eddie is not a thematic answer as the other twelve are all saints] Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Independent | 5 Comments »

Guardian 24,348 (Shed)

Posted by diagacht on 28th March 2008

diagacht.
Across
1 RIDICULE: CID (reversed) in RULE containing I
9 ANIMUS: NIM (old game) in AUS
10 AGATHA: AA aroung GATH (gun)
11 HIGH JUMP: a field event and what the doomed man is in for
13 MARASCHINO: anagram of O (old) + CHAIRS + MAN
15 REVAMPS: AVER (reversed) + MPS
16 TRIBADE: IB (I was expecting ‘ibid’) in TRADE
18 CHAUCERIAN: CHAN (as in Jackie Chan) around AIR + ECU (reversed); the ecu was a form of european currency
19 TOYS: being TOnYS without the N; reference is to the Antoinette Perry Awards for Theatre
20 ENTANGLE: E + NT (books) + ANGLE
22 BREWER: B (bishop) + RR (right revd, therefore bishop) around EWE
23 SELECT: SECT around EL (Chicago Elevated Train)
Down
1 RINGS THE CHANGES: anagram of GINS GRETCHEN HAS
2 TINTINNABULATES: 1 part 1 is ring, the definition; TINTIN (cub reporter) + NATES (buttocks) around ABUL (as in ABdUL without the d, the heart). This was the last clue I filled in.
3 SUGAR MAPLE: MAGUS (reversed) around R + APLE (hollow ApPLE)
4 LECHERY: LEERY around CH (Order of the Companions of Honour)
6 SIR JOHN BETJEMAN: anagram of HM JESTER IN BANJO
7 SUMMONED BY BELLS: as in Betjeman’s autobiography and Pavlov’s experiment
14 SPINGBUCK: SPRING BUCK (more usually springbok)
17 DIVERSE: VID (reversed and shortened form of video) + ERSE (language of lowland Scots)

Posted in Guardian | 15 Comments »

Inquisitor 64 GENERAL HOSPITAL by Arachne

Posted by Hihoba on 28th March 2008

Hihoba.

Excellent crossword! Quite testing and certainly fun, with enough continuous progress to keep you interested.

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Inquisitor | 1 Comment »

Last call for S & B 4

Posted by petebiddlecombe on 28th March 2008

petebiddlecombe.

Just a quick reminder that some of us are gathering for another pub & grub session next Friday.

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Announcements | No Comments »

Independent on Sunday 945 by Quixote (Easter 23 Mar 2008)

Posted by nmsindy on 27th March 2008

nmsindy.

Slowed up by 7 down which was new to me and had to look for help even when I’d all the crossing letters and knew it was an anagram. Solving time, 25 mins.

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Independent | No Comments »

Independent 6691/Nimrod

Posted by neildubya on 27th March 2008

neildubya.
Across
1 (TURN TAIL HOME VIA)* – ITALIAN VERMOUTH, otherwise known as IT as in “Gin and It”. But how can “orbital” be an anagram indicator?
9 RY in TON – not difficult given the definition “test clothes” but I didn’t understand why “style” was TON until I looked it up.
10 T,W (AFTER [-n]OO[-n])* – TWO FOR TEA. Mostly an &lit, although “no names” only works in the cryptic reading I think.
11 EQUUS – Peter Shaffer’s play about a boy who has “issues” with horses.
12 RUGBY BALL – the clue refers to 15 but it’s nothing to do with the answer at 15a as there are 15 players in an RU side.
13 (THIS GREY E)* – EYES RIGHT.
15 BOLUS – which is a “mass” but I don’t understand “heading for the pit”.
18 (VOICES DID)* – VIDEO DISC.
24 POT OF GOLD – got this from the definition as the wordplay is lost on me: “Rainbow’s end/coq-au-vin/corporation?” (setter’s italics). OR is “gold” but that’s all I can work out. Also, what happened to the idea of the surface reading of a clue making at least some sense?
25 BATIK – had to use the Reveal button to get this, another one I don’t get: “Dyed fabric article with which kitbag’s two thirds filled up”.
26 TWENTY-FOUR SEVEN – 24(a) is where you’ll find POT OF GOLD and 7(d) is ULTRA (“extremely”).
 
Down
1 (I TEMPT NEON LIGHT)* – IN THE MELTING-POT.
3 INN IS FREE – a reference to the Yeats poem “The Lake Isle of Innisfree”.
5 (LEG AND TOE)* – ELONGATED. Why could “and” appear in the clue instead of “&”?
7 hidden in “adULT RAcy”
16 (TOILET VIM)* – LEITMOTIV.
20 SETAE – another one where I had to “Reveal” and which I don’t understand: “Stalks top-class babe, just looking at rear!”.
22 (HAD US)* – SADHU.

Posted in Independent | 11 Comments »

Guardian 24347/Logodaedalus

Posted by Colin Blackburn on 27th March 2008

Colin Blackburn.

A fairly straightforward puzzle with a small amount of word play en clair. There were a couple of tougher clues in here too. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Guardian | 15 Comments »

Financial Times 12,726 (Gozo)

Posted by diagacht on 27th March 2008

diagacht.
Across
1 LAST WORD: &Lit
5 ABIDES: AB (sailor) + IDES (fateful date)
9 BUTTER UP: BUTTERcUP without the ‘c’ (top of carpel)
10 TISSUE: anagram of SUITES
13 DISCARDED: DISC + anagram of DREAD
14 MORSEL: MORSE (detective) + L
16 OKINAWA: O (duck) + KIN (family) + AWA (nearly away, as in left)
18 IN DEPTH: IN (trendy) + DEPT (department) + H (leading Hounslow)
22 ASCERTAIN: AS CERTAIN
23 TIGER: TIER (row) about G (first of games)
24 TURBOT: TURBO (boost) + T (time)
25 PALETOTS: PALE (anaemic) + TOTS (little kids)
26 RASCAL: hidden
27 ATOMISER: anagram of A MOISTER
Down
1 LIBYAN: LIB (politician) + NAY (reversed)
2 SETTLE OLD SCORES: which is what one does when looking up Wisden
4 ROUNDEL: ROUND (patrol) + EL (the French, reversed)
6 BRIGADIER: anagram of BIG + RAIDER
7 DISADVANTAGEOUS: anagram of DAVIDS GOT NAUSEA
8 SPEEDWAY: &Lit
11 OSLO: hidden
15 SUPERNOVA: anagram of PROVE A SUN
17 PILASTER: PLASTER (screed) about I
20 CONTACT: CON (Tory) + TACT (diplomacy)
21 ERASER: ERAS (times) + ER (Queen)
23 THERM: hidden

Posted in FT | No Comments »

Financial Times 12,717 by Cincinnus

Posted by Pete Maclean on 27th March 2008

Pete Maclean.

Some snazzy clues here but also one that I could not solve (11D)!

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in FT | 4 Comments »