Fifteensquared

Never knowingly undersolved.

FT 12,810/ Phssthpok

Posted by smiffy on July 3rd, 2008

smiffy.

A rare visit to the FT from the intriguingly-named Phssthpok. A well-balanced offering with some nice touches and a gentle smattering of intra-grid cross references. Feels like just the kind of puzzle that could lure the more casual solver into a deeper appreciation of the setter’s art.

Across
1 POP, THE QUESTION – A Shakespearean reference that that even the less Bard-savvy amongst us can figure pretty readily.
10 A(PA)RT
11A,DUMB,RATE – a bit chestnutty, but fair enough.
12 EL GRECO – hidden rev.
13 A,X,O,LOT,L -
16 AUTOFOCUS
19 CENTIPEDE – (c in the deep)*-[h]. “Hundred-foot long predator” is a great definition, especially with the subtly redicrected hyphen.  I do wonder what constitutes “prey” in the food chain below centipedes though!
22 ANTIGEN – (in agent)*
25 EX,CRETE
29 CINEMATOGRAPHY – (theory, campaign)*

Down
2 ORANG[-e] UTAN – (tuna)*
3 TI(T)LE – Straightforward, but at least I now know that the chemical symbol for Tritium is T (until today I’d have guessed Tr).
4 E,LAB,ORATE
5 UVULA – initial letters. The dangly thing in ones throat – much referred to by Sid James in Carry on Doctor, as I recall.
6 SUB,WOOFER – For once “for speaker” isn’t a homophone indicator!
7 I(DAH)O – (had)<
8 NEEDLES[-s]
9 CAMERA – ref the legal term in camera.
15 C,LING,FILM
17 THEME SONG – (h  gemstone)*
18 CY(CLE PA)TH[-e] – a bit of a contorted structure, but the silky smooth surface reading more than compensates for that.
21 P,REFER – “attribute” as a verb.
26 COBRA – (boa c[....]r)* A well-spotted opportunity, I thought.

3 Responses to “FT 12,810/ Phssthpok”

  1. RG says:

    I don’t understand your explanation of 18d and I also don’t understand 23d, “Claw almost soaring over leg.”

  2. Geoff Moss says:

    18d ‘cy’ = Cyprus (IVR) + anagram of ‘place’ + ‘th’ (most of ‘the’) giving ‘cyclepath’ (a way (place) where cars are forbidden.

    23d ‘tal’ (almost soaring = ‘tall’ minus the last letter) + ‘on’ = leg (the leg side in cricket) giving ‘talon’ (a claw).

  3. RG says:

    Ah. Thanks very much Geoff.

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