Never knowingly undersolved.

Independent 6796 by Merlin

Posted by NealH on July 28th, 2008


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

An anagram-heavy puzzle from Merlin with some good long anagrams and a couple of excellent &literals. There were a couple (17 across and 19 down) I didn’t completely follow.

8 Romanic: Or< + manic.
10 Ophidia: o phi aid<.
11 Square leg umpire: (I’m super)* around (qua[r]rel) + eg. Superb &literal without the “run out” wordplay fitting seamlessly into the clue.
12 Tossing the caber: (hearten big Scots)*.
13 End user: ensured*.
15 Rostrum: or< + strum.
17 Underhandedness: I found this a little odd. There appear to be a couple of cryptic definitions (short-staffed and differences between left and right hands), but neither actually conveyes the proper meaning of the word.
20 In apple-pie order: (pale pipe)*.
21 Osmotic: OS + MOT + i c.
22 Tetanus: tautens*.
1 Cross the rubicon: (corrections Bush)*.
2 Amours: A[r]mours + &lit.
3 Entrails: latrines*.
4 Longshore drift: (Lord of the Rings)*. Quite surprising to find there is a perfect anagram for that.
5 Thymic: thy + mic[e].
6 Ad libber: a dibber around l.
7 Careers mistress: cryptic def (charges = pupils).
9 Call girl agency: brilliant cryptic def.
14 Dad’s army: Dad + s[t]ar + my.
16 Sidmouth: Cryptic. You have to be old enough to remember the “if you see Sid, tell him” campaigns for gas privatisation.
18 Repute: Ree[d] around put.
19 Ending: Didn’t really get this – “Feature of big swing song providing finale”. I assume “providing finale” = ending, but not sure about the rest.

5 Responses to “Independent 6796 by Merlin”

  1. Andrew says:

    19dn – “big”, “swing” and “song” all END IN G…

  2. nmsindy says:

    UNDERHANDEDNESS I think dicts give it in the sense of short-staffed. I wondered was the other part a play on the ‘dishonest’ meaning, but was not quite sure. And, as you say, some excellent clues here.

  3. conradcork says:

    4 down is typical. IMHO nobody does more apposite anagrams than Merlin.

  4. rayfolwell says:

    17A – maybe UNDER=Liable to + HANDEDNESS=difference between left and right ?

    Great anagrams though, I really liked TOSSING THE CABER

  5. nmsindy says:

    That’s it, Rayfolwell, I’m sure, thanks. ‘lead to’ is a link.

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