Never knowingly undersolved.

Financial Times 12,898 / Neo

Posted by C G Rishikesh on October 14th, 2008

C G Rishikesh.

Not too easy, not too hard. For this puzzle I took full thirty minutes and a little more. After some crossings were in, I got the long perimeter entries at 1ac and 26ac but I don’t see the annotation for these and another long anagram as well. I have not solved two; they are short lights and every other letter is available at each slot, yet I am not trying as I don’t care much for the particular words: these are unexciting ones that a compiler has to fit in after some other long entries.

I want to congratulate the compiler on the long entries at 26ac and 8dn: these don’t come from any crossword key or phrase dictionary. And anyone who has solved these has not cheated!


1 CHURCH OF ENGLAND – anno pending. I did a lot of scribbling but in vain.
9 EXPENSE – Ex(pens)e – outgoing, n. = expenditure (Chambers)
10 CAT SCAN – cats,c,an – cat = a man, chap (slang) (Chambers)
11 SWAPO – swap,0 – short for South West Africa People’s Organization (an acronym that was in newspapers in the past)
12 MARTYRDOM – mod,ry.,tram (rev.) ‘resort’ is the anagrind.
13 ROADMETAL – (to Mardale)*
15 Not solved
16 SUPER – su(-p)per – actually ‘super’ is short for ‘superfine'; in India we have rava and other provisions of ‘superfine’ variety; ‘super’ itself is used only in the sense of ‘exceptionally good’. Ask even a non-English speaking person in a village, “How was the Rajini film?”, he would say “Super!”. Rajini himself is a ‘superstar’.
18 INDECORUM – indeco(nicedo*), rum – when the ale is in, the wit is out.
20 STRIPCLUB – strip, club – longish def.
23 RAVEL – Two def. – but ‘ravel’ can also mean ‘disentangle’! See Chambers.
24 ANTARES -ant(are)s
25 NOUVEAU – Two def. – ‘nouveau’, as you know, is French for ‘new’ (“to Poussin”, a French painter in the Classical style). ref. to “art nouveau” – “A French school of art and architecture popular in the 1890s; characterized by stylized natural forms and sinuous outlines of such objects as leaves and vines and flowers” (WordWeb)
26 TENNIS COURT OATH – Anno pending.


1 CREASE-RESISTANT – crease,resitant :: striker – not worker in sit-in but batsman in cricket as any schoolboy will tell us
2 UPPSALA – Up, PS, a la
3 CONFORMER – C(on,for,me)R :: one who complies with practices of the Established Church
4 OLEUM – hidden in coOL EU Ministers
5 ENCIRCLED – ‘circle’ (cleric*) in ‘end’
6 GET BY – two def.
7 ARCADIA – ar(cad)ia
8 DON’T MAKE ME LAUGH! – Again, scribbling has not yielded the anagram.
14 TRIPLE SEC – (let prices)* – Got the anagram but had to look up Chambers for confirmation.
15 INCORRUPT – i(NCO)rrupt – Is NCO for ‘bombardier’ a stretch? ‘Irrupt’ is a dictionary word meaning ‘to break in’
17 PURITAN – pu(Rita)n – ref. to the comedy Educating Rita
19 RIVIERA – (I arrive)*
21 Not solved
22 BANTU – ba(N)t,U

9 Responses to “Financial Times 12,898 / Neo”

  1. Geoff Moss says:

    15a ISAAK IS *(AKA) (also known as) – Chris Isaak singer and actor

    21d PARSI PARIS (Prince of Troy) with last two letters reversed

  2. Geoff Moss says:

    1a *(COULD HANG FRENCH) – I’ve no idea how ‘His French agent’ relates to the answer

    26a Check Wikipedia:


  3. Geoff Moss says:

    15d “Is NCO for ‘bombardier’ a stretch?”

    No, the Chambers’ definition for ‘bombardier’ is ‘the lowest non-commissioned officer in the British artillery’

  4. Geoff Moss says:

    Sorry, comment #2 should of course have read “I’ve no idea how ‘His British agent’ relates to the answer”

    I had it right the first time but the system wouldn’t accept my comment presumably because I put the full URL for the Wikipedia reference (though I don’t know why, I’ve been able to post links before). When I retyped it omitting the http//: I got my countries mixed up.

  5. C G Rishikesh says:

    No prob!

    I should have filled in PARSI. It did cross my mind but I didn’t see the wordplay immediately. So I gave up!

    I have some Parsi friends here in Madras.

    For me, a Parsi is a member of a community, not a ‘religionist’.

  6. Magpie says:

    In 1a, I think it makes sense if you take “His” with the capital H as a reference to God!
    Thoroughly enjoyable puzzle.

  7. Geoff Moss says:

    Good thinking Magpie!

  8. phil says:

    how does submarine fit into 9a?

  9. Geoff Moss says:


    A ‘submarine dock’ is called a pen so we have PENS in EXE (a river in Devon)

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