Never knowingly undersolved.

Financial Times 12,890 by Cinephile

Posted by Pete Maclean on October 16th, 2008

Pete Maclean.

The Weekend Prize Crossword from 4th October 2008
Cinephile seriously stumped me with 15D here. (No doubt someone will enlighten me.) I nominate 27A for the best clue

1. FLAT-PACK – FLAT (accommodation) + PACK (the cards). So, a week or two ago we had Skype and now we have a nod to Ikea.
5. SPREAD – double definition
9. COLOSSAL – LOSS (financial imbalance) in COAL (fuel)
10. FABRIC – ABRI (shelter) in FA (footballers). I know “abri” from French but had not known it was also an English word.
12. DUPLE – hidden word
13. CHERISHED – CHERI[e] (politician’s wife nearly) + SHED (gave up)
14. SNIPER – SNIP (certainty) + ER (hesitation). Certainty as in something easily accomplished.
16. TOUGHEN – anagram of THE UN GO
18. MAHONIA – HO (house) in MANIA (obsession). I had to look this one up.
20. BREATH – RE (replaced) in BATH (tub)
22. NEWCASTLE – NEW (different) + CAST (players) + LE (the French)
23. OCEAN – O (round) + E (drug) in CAN (container). Nice to see a clue for OCEAN that is not an anagram of canoe.
24. SKIMPY – IMP (little devil) in SKY (heaven)
25. IDENTIFY – I (one) + DENTRIF[rice] (toothpaste without cereal) + Y[ogurt]
26. NETHER – NET (catch) + HER (the lady)
27. PROROGUE – PRO (career) + ROGUE (criminal)

1. FACADE – F (start to form) + A (a) + CADE (rebel). The rebel is the C15 Englishman, Jack Cade.
3, 11, 19. POSTE RESTANTE – anagram of POETS + REST (others) + ANTE (before)
4. CHANCER – CHAUCER with U changed to N
6. PLATITUDE – P (p) + LATITUDE (parallel)
7. EARTH SHATTERING – EAR (listener) + S (singular) + HATTER (crazy trader) in THING (article)
8. DECADENT – DECADE (period) + NT (sacred books)
15. PINEAPPLE(?) – the only words I can find that fit here are PINEAPPLE and PONDAPPLE. PINEAPPLE is the only one of these that begins to fit the clue (PINE = wooden) but this suggests that “pupil” gives us APPLE and a pineapple is something or somehow near the ground — neither of which I can make sense of.
17. AMUNDSEN – ND (North Dakota) in AMUSE (divert) + N (pole)
20. BLENDER – B (second) + LENDER (person supplying money)
21. ENZYME – anagram of ZEN + M (number) in YE (solvers)
23. OWNER – O (old) + anagram of NEW + R (right)

3 Responses to “Financial Times 12,890 by Cinephile”

  1. Octofem says:

    Hi Pete- only thing I could think of for 15d was ‘apple of his eye’ for pupil? Is that possible. do you think? I believe they grow on the ground, or on a short bush.

  2. Geoff Moss says:

    15d Chambers give ‘apple of the eye’ as meaning ‘pupil of the eye’ and ‘pine’ is wooden so the answer is pineapple which grows at ground level hence its tough skin to protect it from predators.

    IMO a poor clue with an even worse definition. There are many things ‘near the ground’. Now if ‘pupil’ had an alternate meaning of ‘fruit’ it would be another matter!

  3. Pete Maclean says:

    Thanks, folks. I am left satisfied that this is indeed a lousy clue. I know how pineapples grow. It is not easy to compare their closeness to the ground with that of other fruit because pineapples are the only fruit I can think of that a plant bears only one of. Sure, they grow closer to the ground than apples but that is hardly a meaningful comparison. And they do not grow as close to the ground as, say, melons.

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