Never knowingly undersolved.

Crossword No 6700 by Al

Posted by NealH on April 7th, 2008


*=anag, <=reversed, [] =dropped

I’ve not come across this compiler before, so wasn’t sure what to expect. It was a good, although not horrendously difficult puzzle with some excellent attempts at deception. The only clue I didn’t really follow was 16 across.

1 Hors Doeuvres: Horse + s around (devour)*. This spelling of Hors D’oeuvres always throws me, although it’s come up a few times before, so it must be allowed. Horse clued as “unusual meat” might be a bit debatable, since it depends what country you’re in. Clearly, in the UK it would be unusual, but less so in countries like France.
10 Idiot: Id + o in it.
11 Transport: (torn past)* around r
12 Hairnet: Hair (Darryl, controversial test umpire) + net.
13 Lorelei: lore + lei.
14 Nontoxic: (On tonic)* around x.
16 Ferret: (Ref)< + re + t. I don’t know what ferret has to do with tape, unless there is such a thing as “ferret tape”.
18 Copper: Co + pp + er.
20 Portions: port + ions.
24 Sporran: SP + narro[w]<.
25 Pastime: PE around “as Tim”.
27 Lookalike: Kali + k in Looe.
28 Aware: A + ware.
29 Ethnocentric: (content reich)*.
2 Ovidian: (in a void)*.
3 Sit in: Nit is<.
4 Outstrip: Cryptic def (Gypsy Rose Lee was an old burlesque dance act).
5 Unable: U + (el ban)<.
6 Resurgent: Res + urgent. I’m not personally a big fan of having latin in puzzles (mainly because I didn’t do it at school, so usually end up having to guess what the latin word is).
7 Spoiler: (prose + i l)*
8 Lichen: chil[dr]en*. Not heard of lichen as a skin disease before.
9 Strict: Stir with i moved down 1 place + ct.
15 Overreach: over + reach.
17 Complete: (c + omelet + p)*.
18 Castle: Cast + l + e (chess piece aka rook).
19 Promote: Prom + (ot)< + e.
21 Origami: (I’m + a giro)<.
22 See red: Seer + ed.
23 Indigo: In + dig + o. Good deception to make it look like a word inside dig.
26 Shaft: double def with a clever surface that pointed towards prisons.

7 Responses to “Crossword No 6700 by Al”

  1. Paul B says:

    I wouldn’t mind some enlightenment on TAPE = FERRET myself.

    Very Ximenean debut from AL, although I think there could be some cake-throwing at the next bash involving those who would rather sleep with Ann Widdecombe than risk the ignominy of clueing Lorelei LORE/ LEI.

    I’m sort of kidding of course – welcome AL, a fine start.

  2. rayfolwell says:

    Chambers has “Ferret” as a narrow silk or cotton ribbon.

  3. nmsindy says:

    Not a début, I think – I seem to remember a previous Indy (just one) by Al three or four years ago. Enjoyable puzzle.

  4. Paul B says:

    I’ve just clicked who ’tis. Thanks to Ray and NMS.

  5. henri says:

    I was not impressed by 12 across. How can we be expected to know that Hair is a cricket umpire? A very 29 across clue.

  6. NealH says:

    As I alluded in the blog, he has been in the news a lot because of the controversy over his decision to accuse Pakistan of ball-tampering. You could equally well argue that it’s unfair to expect us to know latin or to have heard of Ovid or Gypsy Rose Lee.

    Unless you’re going to make a rule that all crosswords should stick only to well known English words, there is always likely to be some bit of general knowledge you’re lacking.

  7. Al Streatfield says:

    Thanks to all for the kind words/feedback. I am slightly baffled by Paul B’s “Ann Widdecombe” comment…


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