Never knowingly undersolved.

Financial Times 12,771 – Dante

Posted by Uncle Yap on May 29th, 2008

Uncle Yap.

This is another easily solved prize puzzle (from Monday 19 May 2008) with many anagram clues and cryptic definitions ala Dante. I suppose it is a less stressful way to begin a week and should encourage a large entry. By the way, I never time myself for any puzzle as I approach it primarily for its entertainment value. When I solve, say a clever cryptic definition clue, I savour the aha effect. I also try and rationalise the whole clue to unravel the word-play so craftily devised by the compiler….just like I would slowly enjoy a well-cooked meal prepared so painstakingly by a master chef .

1 STIFLE *(is left)
4 STREAKER Another cd of this genre. ..Barely running (9) for streaking. Streaking appears to be quite a popular British sport, judging from what has transpired at Wimbledon, Twickenham and various test cricket and football grounds in recent years. Someone sent me a collection of ten best streaking incidents. If you are interested to have a peep-in, email me privately <[email protected]>
9 FIGHTS deletion of L (Roman numeral for 50) from flights (squadrons)
12 BONA FIDE cd and a good one, too
13 SCREWS Insertion of CREW (seamen) in SS (aboard)
15 DART dd – “a tapering fold sewn on the reverse of material in order to shape it” (Chambers) is the less known definition
19 WELL-WISHER alluding to the practice of making a wish when throwing a coin into a fountain or well
20 ACES *(case)
23 STRAYS Charade of ST (street) RAYS (lights)
25 ICY WASTE *(cite ways)
27 EMIRATES *(times are)
28 ATTACK dd
29 NONSENSE Charade of NO (negative) NS (north south or poles) + ENSE *(seen)
30 WHITES *(his wet)

2 IN GENERAL Charade of IN (popular) GENERAL (army officer)
3 LET OFF dd
5 TRAP reversal of PART (some)
6 EXERCISE Insertion of ER (Elizabeth Regina or monarch) in EXCISE (duty) … this is a real smoothie, but then most of Dante’s clues are, albeit not that difficult to solve.
7 KNIFE This is one clue that foxed me. With a configuration K?I?E, something sharp must be a knife but I searched in vain for a homophone as indicated by say. It wasn’t until later that I discovered there is an idiomatic expression for something that happens very quickly; “before you can say knife”. Another variation is Jack Robinson.
8 REELS IN Charade of REEL (part of a film) SIN (crime)
11 ADDRESS A well-crafted dd which could very well have been about Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg speech, “universally recognised not only as a classical model of the noblest kind of oratory but also as one of the most moving expressions of the democratic spirit ever uttered” but which was reportedly drafted on an envelope during a train journey
14 OFFENCE Simple charade OF FENCE (receiver of stolen goods)
17 INCESSANT *(instances)
18 AWAY GAME A delightful cd
19 WESTERN Insertion of ST (way) in WEE (short) + RN (Royal Navy)
21 SHEIKHS “”shakes
22 SWITCH dd
24 REIGN Insertion of G (George initially) in REIN (check)
26 MEWS dd

2 Responses to “Financial Times 12,771 – Dante”

  1. C G Rishikesh says:

    Very nice blog. Congrats.

    Re 21D. Can “trembling” yield “shakes” (grammatically speaking)? Should we allow some latitude of this kind in clue-writing?

  2. Rufus says:

    Collins has the “shakes: informal, A state of uncontrollable trembling”. Normally used as someone “having the shakes”. Cannot find any reference to this in Chambers though.
    Nice to see good blogs from C G Rishikesh and Uncle Yap – the Asian Connection!

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