Never knowingly undersolved.

Independent 6686/Eimi

Posted by John on March 21st, 2008


So now we see why Phi was on Tuesday: Eimi had ready a nice 28ac crossword. I hesitate to say that it was tough, but it took me ages, and some of the references were so obscure that I had to use Google.

1 GE(TH(S(uffer))EMAN)E
6 BACH – “bark”, although it depends on how “Bach” is pronounced
10 doubLE Agent. I’m less than keen on such a slight hidden indicator.
11 VENN DIAGRAM – (van dreaming)* – excellent [my simple mistake pointed out in a post has now been corrected]
12 OREGON FIR(e), not a tree I’d heard of but fairly obvious once the checking letters were there
13 DIR(G)E. I don’t understand why he needed to use “mainly”. The clue is long enough as it is. Far be it from me to suggest to the Indy crossword editor how he should write his clues, but what’s wrong with “Good bit towards the end of dreadful sad song”?
14 HOT (striking) CROSS (angry) BU(N)S
18/23 THE OLD RUGGED CROSS – the old (grudge)* cross (centre, as in football). Had never heard of it, but it’s evidently big in America.
24 CAPACITOR – (tapioca)* in c(ontaine)r
25 CANTON CREPE – (kitche)n in (once carpet)*. Easy enough to see what was going on, but I, like Chambers and Bradford, had never heard of this material, and my lack of Bible knowledge about Thomas delayed 22dn, so this wasn’t easy.
26 TAB – much research eventually showed that this is both an LSD tablet and a cigarette in the NE
27 RoyAL SOciety
28 GOOD FRIDAY – (diary of God)* – nice semi &lit.
3 SAVIOUR – (various)*. Not totally convinced by “performers (in?)” as an anagram indicator, and what is the significance of calling it “The Messiah” when the Handel work is “Messiah”?
5 NADIR – (Ahmedineja)d in (Iran)*
8 HUMMER – a 4×4 that hums in both senses
9 GARDEN – (drag)rev. en
19 HESTON – the Heston service station is on the M4 (not something overseas readers will be very familiar with), and Charlton Heston
20 UNCLEAR – (clue ran)*
21 (Obam)A CA CIA
22 WOUND (Thoma)S, referring to the disciple Thomas‘s having to poke his finger into Jesus’s wounds
24 CACAO – CD referring to chocolate bars

9 Responses to “Independent 6686/Eimi”

  1. nmsindy says:

    I too found this very tough – appropriate for a non-working day, but got there in the end. Was not sure about HUMMER which is not in my dicts but guessed it from the wordplay. TAB in its NE sense was new to me, but then I don’t smoke. Minor error in the blog in VENN DIAGRAM – ‘in’ is not part of the anagram. I don’t yet fully understand GETHSEMANE, I’ll have to admit.

    Satisfying puzzle.

  2. Jon says:

    Another good one from Eimi! I found this easier than I thought it’d be, probably because of familiarity with the theme, which meant I got the themed clues straight off without much need for the wordplay. Lucky, really, as I was attempting to solve during a very loud children’s party with a baby in my arms… That said, 6ac (Bach / bark didn’t work the way I pronounce the former…), 8d and 24d caused me a few problems.

    Now off for some 14ac!

  3. Testy says:

    GETHSEMANE is an &lit: “Jesus”=GEE with THE MAN within and beginning to Suffer in that.

    I have no problem with “‘s” as a hidden indicator. Less happy with “performers” and the BACH/bark homophone. There was the odd word here or there that was superfluous. But overall, I thought the puzzle was fine. Hard but fine.

  4. Richard Palmer says:

    I found this enjoyable and not very hard – certainly nowhere near as hard as yesterday’s brute.
    I agree with the previous comments about the pronunciation of Bach and a few redundant words.

  5. eimi says:

    Thanks for the positive responses. I have to hold my hand up over Bach – homophones are often contentious, but in this case clearly I’m one of the sizable minority who mispronounce his name. Ditto Handel’s Messiah. This is one of the disadvantages of not having an editor. Perhaps I should steer clear of classical music or maybe I should have been following the dictum “If it ain’t baroque, don’t fix it.” Sorry about that! Happy Easter everyone.

  6. nmsindy says:

    GETHSEMANE Thanks for that, Testy, that explains it. BACH I got only at the end – it was almost a definition clue in some ways, but I’ll have to confess my ignorance of the work so it’s not just the indie bands! THE OLD RUGGED CROSS is known outside America, I can assure John. Tricky clue which was the breakthrough in the puzzle for me.

  7. DUNCE says:

    I completed this one about two weeks ago now. It appeared on the online version mid-march, and its on again now. So for the last few days, unable to get hold of an Indie out here in Turkey, I’ve been starved of decent puzzles. I’ve done five Irish Indies, the online Chambers and two “Granite” Puzzles, but nothing seems to satisfy. ‘Ods blood, if the online Indie doesnt get its act sorted, I’ll compose my own.

  8. eimi says:

    I despair. Obviously this crossword was supposed to appear on Good Friday and on Good Friday only. I can only suggest that more people complain directly to the Independent, as my complaints seem to be falling on deaf ears.

  9. DUNCE says:

    Actually, I suspect it is a devious new type of competition. The first person to correctly predict what will appear on the online weekend cryptic for three weekends in a row gets a free guided tour of Chambers Dictionaries Printworks.

    Sorry. I will cease and desist this off-blogging. But thanks to you all for your hard work.

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