Never knowingly undersolved.

FINANCIAL TIMES 12,830 by Cinephile (26 July)

Posted by Gaufrid on August 7th, 2008


Just my luck! Two offerings from Cinephile within three days and both on days when I am scheduled for the blog. However, it was again an enjoyable challenge and a thematic element emerged.

The play ‘A MAN FOR ALL SEASONS’ was written by ‘ROBERT BOLT’, originally for the BBC in 1954 and later adapted for the stage. The principal character ‘SIR THOMAS MORE’ was played by ‘PAUL SCOFIELD’ in the 1960 London stage production and also later on Broadway and in the 1966 film directed by Fred Zinnemann.

It is a pity that Cinephile used an incorrect spelling of Paul’s surname in the grid.


1 CLASSIC FM  ASS (fool) in *(FILM CC) – for those outside the UK, Classic FM is a radio station

6 MAGUS  MAG (periodical, magazine) US (American) – sorcerer, a person who practices witchcraft, is one definition of magus

9 TULIP  TU (French for ‘you’, first person singular, ie ‘one’) LIP (impertinence)

10 LORD REITH  *(RIDER) in LOTH (reluctant) – first Director-General of the BBC, hence a ‘broadcaster’

11 ROBERT BOLT  ROBE (garment) RT (radio telegraphy or telephony) BOLT (flee)

12 BEEF  dd

15 SKITTLE  SKIT (parody) *(LET)

17 REDWING  RED (left) WING (side)

19 V-NECKED  V (first letter of Virginian) NECKED (made love) – to neck is to kiss amourously so I supose it could be described as making love

20 HAWK  dd – as in hawk = try to sell and hawk = a jingoist (a sabre-rattler or warmonger)

22, 14a A MAN FOR ALL SEASONS  A MAN (Isle of Man) OR (gold) in FALL (autumn) SEASONS – ‘this and the others’ indicating ‘autumn’ and the other three seasons of the year

25 MANDATORY  M (first letter of Major) AND (with) A TORY (one of his party) – John Major was the Conservative Prime Minister from 1990 to 1997

26 RATTY  cd – Ratty was the name of the water vole in the book ‘Wind in the Willows’

27 STEEL  cd – the ‘enobled party leader’ is Sir David Steel, leader of the Liberal Party from 1976 to 1988

28 TREASURER  *(RATE) SURER (more confident)


1 CATER  – the definition is obviously ‘provide’ or ‘provide food’ but what is the wordplay? I have determined four or five possibilities but am not particularly happy with any of them. The most acceptable (or possibly least unacceptable) is: CATE (food) R (river) – cate = viand = food in Chambers and cate = choice food in COD. The Congo was previously called the Pillar River (Rio de Padrao) and there is the Amud River (Pillar River in English) that flows into the Sea of Galilee.

Alternative suggestions as to how this clue works would be more than welcome.

2 ALL ABOARD  ALLA[h] (almost the Lord) BOARD (table)

3 SUPERSONIC  SU (opening of Sunday) PERSON (chap) IC (in charge)

4 COLOBUS  COLO[n] (nearly stop) BUS (vehicle) – a ‘stop’ is a punctuation mark

5 MARBLES  cd – ‘from Athens’ referring to the Elgin Marbles

7 GRIME  G (good) RIME (old poem)

13 SIDEBOARDS  dd – ‘face growth’ being side wiskers


16 TAKE AFTER  TAKE (remove) AFTER (in due course)

18 GUMBOOT  GUMBO (soup) TO reversed – ‘served’ as a reversal indicator is interesting and presumably refers to the act of throwing up (a ball) when serving in tennis and other sports

19 VANDYKE  *(KENYA DV) – DV is Deo volante or ‘God willing’. ‘Brown beard’ is a double definition. A Vandyke beard (a short pointed one ) is not necessarily brown but there is also a colour called vandyke brown

21 WINCE  CE (this in French) after WIN (success)


24, 8 PAUL SCHOFIELD  *(CHAP SOUL) FIELD (the rest of the runners)

4 Responses to “FINANCIAL TIMES 12,830 by Cinephile (26 July)”

  1. C G Rishikesh says:

    In the late Fifties A Man for All Seasons was staged in Madras by a visiting troupe from the UK. I don’t remember how but the MRA movement was connected with that event. When I think of one, the other crops up in my mind.

  2. smiffy says:

    Did any of your possibilities for 1D include CATER[pillar]?

  3. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Smiffy

    Yes, it was first on my list but I thought it too simple and obvious for a Cinephile crossword so I spent a lot of time looking for alternatives.

  4. Wil Ransome says:

    Two clues that I didn’t like: 1ac, where ‘required’ is evidently the anagram indicator. Hmm. And 1dn, where I think it is as Smiffy suggests – the others are all too unlikely I think – but if so then surely there should be something to indicate ‘caterpillar’. Seems loose.

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