Never knowingly undersolved.

Guardian 24,583 – Brendan

Posted by Uncle Yap on December 30th, 2008

Uncle Yap.

dd = double definition
cd = cryptic definition
rev = reversed or reversal
ins = insertion
cha = charade
ha = hidden answer
*(fodder) = anagram

What a lovely puzzle. It was so good I burst out singing
Doe– a deer a female deer        22D Hind
ray– a drop of golden sun        13A Beam
me– a name I call myself        1A Brendan
far– a long long way to run        6D Marathon
sew– a needle pulling thread         15D Stitch
la– a note to follow sew        7D Ergon
tea– a drink with jam and bread    21D Cuppa
that will bring us back to do… Oh oh oh

I often marvel at Brendan’s painstaking devotion to making every aspect of his theme work in such smooth unison. Another very challanging and entertaining puzzle.

1 BRENDA Compiler is Brendan minus n = QE II (ala Cyclops)
5 TEMPESTS Ins of E MP (English politician) in tests (international events involving cricket)
9 CRUCIBLE Alluding to the Crucible Theatre in Sheffield which is the venue for many a snooker championship
10 REGINA Capital of Saskatchewan. Let’s see which of AGE is the first to parse this
11 DISCONTINUES DISC (record) *(not in use)
13 BEAM Is there a mathematician by this name?
14 NEON SIGN *(inn’s gone)
17 FALSETTO *(state of L)
18 IONA Rev ha
20 PANCHROMATIC *(romantic chap)
23 SIMPLE ha
24 SARDINIA Ins of R Din (run racket) in *(Asia)
25 PEDANTIC Ins of ED (editor) + ANTI (opposed to) in  PC (politically correct or inoffensive use of language)
26 PAGODA Ins of A God (a venerated object) in AP (Old man)

2 RARE dd
3 NICODEMUS NI (rev of in) COD (fish) Emus (Australian birds) See Gospel according to St Johns
4 ABBESS Cha of AB (able-bodied or sailor or Jack) Bess (Elizabeth)
5 THE SOUND OF MUSIC Need I say more?
6 MARATHON Ins of H (horse) in Marat (Jean-Paul (1743-1793) revolutionary) On (over)
7 ERGON Cha of Ergo (so) N (note) I cannot see the link between ‘la’ and ergon, anyone?
8 TANK ENGINE This one gave me the most trouble as I have never until today heard of Thomas the Tank Engine, a fictional anthropomorphic steam locomotive created by the Rev. W. V. Awdry in his Railway Series books and made into the British children’s television series Thomas the Tank Engine and Friends (later simplified to Thomas and Friends) and its American spin-off Shining Time Station. BTW, a tender is a carriage attached to a locomotive to carry fuel and water.
12 REPARATIVE *(a privateer)
15 STITCHING Ins of TITCH (little people) in Sing (inform)
16 STERNEST What a clever clue to pre-fix and suffix ST to two writers, Sterne and Ernest Hemingway
19 STIR UP Cha of Stir (prison) Up (in revolt
21 CUPPA Cha of Cup (competition) PA (per annum or each year)
22 HIND ha

34 Responses to “Guardian 24,583 – Brendan”

  1. Barbara says:

    re: Ergon: def. is work
    Note to follow so = la (in the musical scale) which is part of the theme

  2. jvh says:

    Iona is going back in paranoia and forth in irrationally.

  3. jvh says:

    10A. Regina is a queen. Queens occur in suits of cards?

  4. David says:

    13a Uncle Yap, a summer is a large beam supporting floor joists

  5. David says:

    9a ‘dramatically’ refers to “The Crucible”, the play by Arthur Miller

  6. gsgeorge says:

    Congrats! Uncle Yap…..
    Not an easy puzzle but great fun!
    I liked 16 down .
    Explain ‘cuppa’…. or am I stupid?

  7. mhl says:

    Excellent puzzle.

    Uncle Yap: Thanks for the post. A few quick things: I think 6 down is “Revolutionary” = MARAT + “taking” = ON over “horse” = H, with “taking” being “on” in the sense of “he’s on antibiotics”. There’s a typo in 26 across (“AP” instead of “PA”). Also, TITCH has to be “one of the little people” rather than “little people”. Please excuse the nit-picking :)

    It’s always bothered me about the solfa song that “la – a note to follow so” is a bit pathetic, when all the other homonyms are quite fun. Unfortunately “la – a Roman house god” doesn’t quite scan…

  8. Geoff says:

    Thanks as ever for your post, Uncle Yap.

    Great puzzle – fun and extremely clever, without being in any way 25ac.

    I couldn’t parse REGINA, although I tried to fit GIN (as in ‘gin rummy’) into a charade. I think Jvh’s suggestion that REGINA = ‘queen’, one of which is in each suit of cards, is probably correct.

    Re 7dn: Brendan was as stumped as Oscar Hammerstein II by the relative lack of English homophones for “la’. Mhl suggests “la – a Roman house god”, but this wouldn’t have occurred to the American Hammerstein, with his rhotic accent, because the deity is properly a LAR (would, it Eileen?)! However, LA – a contemptuous name to address a male person – does exist in the dialect of my native city, Liverpool….

  9. HC says:

    I think that a ‘party in suits’ refers to the crown in court cases.
    Regina vs xxxxxxxxx.

  10. chris says:

    I think they’re law suits, as in Regina versus (defendant)

  11. Geoff says:

    Well done, HC and Chris – that explanation is much more convincing.

  12. don says:

    Can anyone please explain 7 Down? What’s the definition; what’s it got to do with soh and lah?

  13. Brian Harris says:

    Very enjoyable crossword today. Lovely theme, and lots of delightful constructions. Particularly liked 8 down, but also 16 and 18 and 14. Brilliant work by Brendan.

  14. Ian Stark says:

    >>>Explain ‘cuppa’…. or am I stupid?<< cuppa (as in cup of tea).

  15. Brian Harris says:

    Cup = competition
    PA = each year

    Cuppa = tea = “a drink with jam and bread”

    I don’t want to stir up any controversy but I enjoyed this a lot more than yesterday’s crossword!

  16. Ian Stark says:

    Sorry, the XHTML tags and my typing obviously don’t mix!!

    What I was trying to say was:

    ‘competition’ = cup + ‘each year’ = pa (per annum) gives us ‘cuppa’ (as in cup of tea, colloquially). I’m off to have one . . .

  17. mhl says:

    Don: in 7 down, I believe (after some Googling) that the definition part is “work”, since apparently the Greek word “ergon” means “something done or made”. As Uncle Yap says, the subsidiary is ERGO = “so” followed by N = “note”. I think Geoff is right in suggesting that the reason that the definition isn’t the song’s suggested homonym is that it’s the only note of the solfa that isn’t defined by a homonym in that song. :)

  18. Geoff Moss says:

    You didn’t need Google! Chambers defines ergon as ‘work or business’

  19. don says:

    Thanks Mark, it’s all Greek to me, even the Latin.

    The link between ‘soh’ and ‘lah’ seems as tenuous as Uncle Yap suggests, but as Brian Harris says, a much better crossword than yesterday’s.

    I thought 16 Down was brilliant. I don’t think I’ve come across this type of clue/answer before; it’s undefined even by Uncle Yap.

  20. Derek Lazenby says:

    First off, thanks to everyone who put up with my ramblings yesterday.

    In my own plodding way I eventually got there today with a little help from “wordfinder”.

    Except for one extremely embarassing failure that is. I was too blind to see the totally obvious 1ac. Oh the shame! That is almost as bad as years ago missing “Sammoc (8,6)” in The Times. Hangs head and sits in corner with pointy hat bearing a letter D.

    I too struggled with Tank Engine for a while. But for the opposite reason to Uncle Yap. Over-familiarity. I volunteer on a preserved railway and I just never expected to see train-spotter clue! I would have had to fall on my sword had I not got that one.

    Thanks for the explanations. I got several clues just on the definitions and was rather curious about the wordplay parts.

  21. Eileen says:

    Hi Derek

    Glad to hear you’re feeling happier today. I presume your ‘ramblings’ and ‘plodding’ are metaphorical and that your leg has not miraculously mended overnight – but I hope it soon does.:-)

    Geoff: [Comment 8] Quite right – the Roman household god is a Lar and therefore would produce mock horror in my late Scottish husband but it was all a bit of fun, really. The only homophone I could think of is lah-di-dah and you can’t do a lot with that. I thought 7dn was an excellent clue – both in itself as a note to follow so, and for the reason suggested by Mhl at comment 17.

    Another very entertaining puzzle, which everyone seems to have enjoyed – it’s great to see such consensus!

  22. Derek Lazenby says:

    Well, Eileen, I wasn’t unhappy, I just like a lively discussion! Sadly I wasn’t being metaphorical, I do ramble. They say Walter Scott was paid by the word, hence the length of his tomes. A mere amateur LOL. And I do plod compared to this illustrious company! I just wish the leg was metaphorical. Hah. Six weeks in and six to go so I’m told. All I did was walk the dog and slip on a greasy tree root! I wrote my car off last year and only got bruises. Where’s the sense in that?

  23. George Foot says:

    Many thanks to Uncle Yap and thank goodness for the existence of 15squred. Despite having completed todays crossword I still hadn’t got my head around the fact that each note in the song appeared in a clue apart from noticing it in 24D and I thought that was clever. Absolutely brilliant and to think I might never have known. This blog certainly adds to my enjoyment of crosswords. Stick with it Derek!

  24. mhl says:

    Geoff Moss: we’ve been travelling around for Christmas and New Year and I thought bringing Chambers with me might have caused (a) excess baggage charges and (b) ridicule from my family, so Google was the easiest option :) Thanks for the definition…

  25. Noel says:

    Very nice puzzle – I got stuck on 7d and 10 ac – don’t think I would ever have got these.

    11 ac BEAM – not sure anyone’s fully explained this (i.e. why ‘summer’)?

  26. Noel says:

    sorry – I see David did so (entry no. 4)

  27. Shirley says:

    Noel – see response no 4!!

  28. Noel says:

    A minor quibble, whilst I’m here…

    10 ac – Regina cannot, by definition, be a party to a ‘suit’, a lawsuit being a civil action brought by one party against another. Regina would be the prosecutor in a criminal ‘case’.

  29. stiofain_x says:

    A great puzzle today I think Brendan has the whole package and I would rank this alongside the best Araucaria and Paul themed puzzles

  30. Shirley says:

    Eileen – have just seen your very kind comments from yesterday. Many thanks and happy New Year to all.

  31. Eileen says:

    Noel: I had exactly the same thought as you re 10ac: I had always thought that ‘suit’ meant the act of suing, ie referring to a civil case, but I was surprised to find ‘prosecution’ as the first meaning given in OED, followed by ‘the action of suing’ with quite a bit of historical detail: Chambers gives ‘the act of suing; an action at law’, with no mention of prosecution and with no historical or etymological background.

    This seems an appropriate moment for me to say that in my few weeks’ acquaintance with my newly-acquired Chambers, I have been, on the whole, disappointed in the lack of such detail and I do wonder why it has been chosen as the ultimate oracle. [I realise that this is probably the ultimate heresy, which is why I’ve chosen bed-time to venture to say it :-)]

  32. Derek Lazenby says:

    The flaw in that plan is that some of us have not gone to bed yet. Hoewever, I have nothing to say on the subject (my long term friends would have died of shock at that juncture!).

  33. Tom Hutton says:

    Chambers has a very good selection of Scots words which are often useful to a compiler (and at scrabble).

  34. nmsindy says:

    Re your Chambers comment, Eileen, at 31 above, I think Chambers serves its purpose as the ultimate reference source for puzzles such as the Listener, Azed, EV, IQ etc which use vocabulary very much wider than normal (or what you might expect to find in a daily cryptic).

    It’s important to have an indicated, agreed, source in which everything in those puzzles can, hopefully, be justified.

    But for the daily cryptic puzzles and the English language as it is used today, Collins and Oxford are where to look, I’d say.

    Unfortunately, I’d not time to try the Brendan puzzle, the subject of this blog.

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