Never knowingly undersolved.

Guardian 24,470 – Rufus

Posted by Ciaran McNulty on August 18th, 2008

Ciaran McNulty.

I found this fairly easy going, even for a Monday. Mainly composed of a few anagrams, double-definitions and more than the usual amount of cryptic definitions, it was a nice distraction but not much to get your teeth into.

  • * = anagram
  • dd = double definition
  • cd = cryptic definition
  • dd/cd = a dd where one half of the definition is fairly cryptic


  • 7. MEANNESS. MESS around ANNE.
  • 10. RIPE. RIP + E
  • 11. NEAR ENOUGH. RANONEHUGE*. Not sure I liked ‘conglomerate’ as the anagram indicator.
  • 12. IDEALS. LADIES*.
  • 14. EXPOSURE. dd/cd. Disclosure/exposure sharing a suffix makes the dd feel weaker than it is.
  • 17. ANARCHY. ARCH in ANY.
  • 20. WATCH OUT. dd/cd.
  • 22. CASINO. cd.
  • 24. SNOW. S + NOW.
  • 25. TANNER. dd. Slang name for a sixpence.
  • 26. PREMISES. dd.


  • 2. KNEE. K + NEE.
  • 3. TENNIS. cd. Score one more than 40 to win.
  • 4. LIFESPAN. LIE + F + SPAN. Doesn’t quite work unless you use covering or time twice, I think.
  • 5. OUT OF SORTS. dd.
  • 6. BEGGAR. cd. They solicit for change, not sure why self-employed is relevant?
  • 8. SCALES. cd.
  • 13. ATTACHMENT. dd.
  • 15. ROOSTERS. ROSTERS around O.
  • 18. HAND OVER. dd.
  • 19. STREEP. PETERS*, a famous Meryl.
  • 21. ARENAS. cd
  • 22. CASKET. cd? A bit too literal for my taste.
  • 24. STIR. A triple-definition with a well worked surface.

7 Responses to “Guardian 24,470 – Rufus”

  1. Rich says:

    I had the answer but couldn’t see the word play on 16D ‘roosters’ I suppose the ‘o’ for egg comes from ovum? Is this a common usage? I haven’t seen it before.

    Seamstress made me laugh when I eventually stopped thinking about drains and got which sewer Rufus meant!

  2. Andrew says:

    I suspect O = egg is from the shape of the letter. Possibly related to the (alleged?) derivation of “love”, meaning zero in tennis scoring, from “l’oeuf” .

    22dn – I agree this is not very cryptic. I initially put in COFFIN, then saw it looked unlikely because it would make 23ac end in I. It’s the usual problem of cds with no additional wordplay: you can’t be sure you’ve got the right word.

  3. Paul B says:

    I’ve seen ‘egg’ indicate O (or 0 to be absolutely correct) before, and I’d been guessing the origins of both ‘duck’ and ‘egg’ for this usage to lie with cricket terminology. ‘Out for a duck’ is the short form of ‘out for a duck’s egg’.


  4. Qaos says:

    I too was caught by COFFIN for 22d for quite a while!

    I’ve also seen “spectacles” to indicate OO, so “egg” for O makes a certain sense.

    Whilst an easy crossword, it had some delightful clues – 24a being my favourite. Such a nice surface reading.

  5. Paul B says:

    ‘Pair of spectacles’ = 00 = two scores of zero for the same batsman in standard four innings game of cricket.

    Platinum duck = first ball of the innings dismissal, golden duck = any other first ball dismissal, silver duck = second ball dismissal.

  6. muck says:

    I’m a fan of Rufus, but have to agree with Ciaran that 4dn doesn’t work. ‘Story’ could be LIE or LIES, ‘covering Frank’s first’ has to mean insert F, and ‘time on earth’ clearly defines LIFESPAN. So we are missing SPAN, or possibly PAN, in the wordplay. I don’t see Ciaran’s suggestion that ‘covering’ could be doing double duty. If ‘time’ is doing double duty, it’s even used in the same sense in both the wordplay and the definition.

  7. Rich says:

    Thanks for the explanations.

Leave a Reply

Don't forget to scroll down to the Captcha before you click 'Submit Comment'

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

eight − = 2