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Archive for December, 2008

Financial Times 12,959 by Bradman

Posted by Gaufrid on 24th December 2008


A late blog today because this one caused me some problems, particularly in the NE corner. All the across answers are Biblical Characters and most lived BC. A number of them are obscure to say the least, well in my opinion anyway,  and some do not appear in the lists of biblical names that I have found on the web. A copy of the Bradford or Chambers crossword dictionary may have helped but unfortunately I don’t have a copy of either.

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Posted in FT | 4 Comments »

Guardian 24,580 – Paul

Posted by manehi on 24th December 2008


Am solving and blogging now after a night out knowing that I won’t get up at a reasonable hour tomorrow/this morning.. surprisingly easy for a Paul, I felt, with a lot of easyish clues among the many nice ones. Merry Christmas all… anyone else get to open their presents by this afternoon :)?

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Posted in Guardian | 10 Comments »

Independent 6924/Nimrod

Posted by John on 24th December 2008


Nimrod is undoubtedly very imaginative and some of the clues here are lovely, but there are, as I always find with this setter, one or two places where he seems to teeter on the edge of acceptability. The grid has only 22 clues, half of them with more unchecked letters than checked, and two of them simply 2 out of 5; some people (quite justifiably in my opinion) don’t like it when they have _E_E_ and there are hundreds of possibilities (178 actually, according to Word Matcher). 22 clues is about as small a number of clues as I’ve ever met in a 15×15 cryptic: Nimrod will probably take this as a challenge to provide even fewer. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Independent | 8 Comments »

Guardian 24579 / Pasquale

Posted by mhl on 23rd December 2008


This is the first Pasquale that I’ve done as a blogger, and sadly I have very little time to devote to it – so apologies for not including more commentary, links, etc. Anyway, this was an excellent puzzle, with marvellous surface readings and lots of enjoyable “a-ha!” moments. My one reservation is 25 across (particularly since I’m in Italy at the moment!)

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Posted in Guardian | 15 Comments »

Financial Times 12,958 by Gozo

Posted by Gaufrid on 23rd December 2008


Rishi is away at a family gathering so I am covering for him today. A ‘liquid’ theme from Gozo, apt for the time of year. Having at one time run my own public house and restaurant, most of the thematic entries were well known to me but I cannot say I have ever served mate, tisane or crusta (and there wasn’t much demand for sake! :-)

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Posted in FT | 3 Comments »

Independent 6923 by Virgilius

Posted by nmsindy on 23rd December 2008


A most unusual and innovative crossword, that I found quite hard before finally getting there in 49 mins. The idea was that in line with 15 across A COMEDY OF ERRORS, there were mistakes in the puzzle in those clues marked with a *. A few where I don’t quite see what is going on, so any help would be appreciated.

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Posted in Independent | 10 Comments »

Guardian 24,578 – Rufus

Posted by Ciaran McNulty on 22nd December 2008

Ciaran McNulty.

As sometimes happens, I filled in the grid very quickly but took a while to come up with the reasoning behind some of the clues.

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Posted in Guardian | 17 Comments »

Independent 6922 by Dac

Posted by NealH on 22nd December 2008


*=anag, []=dropped, <=reversed, hom=homophone

A gentle start to Christmas week from Dac with some well-written and enjoyable clues. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Independent | 6 Comments »

Private Eye/Cyclops 380 – Taking ones Moet

Posted by beermagnet on 22nd December 2008


A few reasonably tricky clues this time, and a bit of a panic when stuck on 4D, so quite satisfying to finish this one in the end.

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Posted in Private Eye/Cyclops | 3 Comments »

Azed 1907 — Plain

Posted by John on 20th December 2008


A fairly standard Azed, I think.  Lots of words of which I’d never heard, fairly predictable and verified in Chambers, and as usual a very well-constructed grid, with words of many lengths (except that Azed has never in my experience sunk to using three-letter words). Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Azed | 4 Comments »

Guardian 24,571 (Sat 13 Dec)/Araucaria – Jingle Bells

Posted by rightback on 20th December 2008


Solving time: 16 mins, one missing (6dn)

If I’d been well schooled in Brontë, this would have been one of my fastest solves of an Araucaria crossword – surprising, considering the grid, which is one of the most disconnected used by broadsheets (I’ve seen this one in the Independent too). As it was, I was pleased to escape with just one missing, at least until I looked up ‘Balt’ and realised how stupid I’d been: straight to bed and no supper.

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Posted in Guardian | 15 Comments »

Enigmatic Variations No. 841 – Open Chambers by Kea

Posted by Gaufrid on 20th December 2008


On my initial run through the clues I had a feeling that this might be the first EV that I’d failed to solve, particularly as I was still struggling with the final stage in Kea’s recent Listener. However, by the end of my first session I had all the answers bar four of the thematically related ones (2d, 4d, 6d, and 20d).

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Posted in Enigmatic Variations | No Comments »

FT 12,955/MUDD (Master of Ubiquitous Double Definitions?)

Posted by smiffy on 19th December 2008


Apologies for the lateish and skeletal blog today; didn’t manage to get near a PC earlier, and there’s an impending blizzard in this neck of the woods, so I have to dash before I get snowed in.

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Posted in FT | 5 Comments »

Independent 6920 by Phi

Posted by nmsindy on 19th December 2008


A puzzle with a seasonal theme. I’d not heard the quote before so it took me quite a while to tease it all out esp as, understandably, fitting the quote in meant more unfamiliar words had to be used. Solving time, 39 mins.

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Posted in Independent | 4 Comments »

Guardian 24,576 – Gordius

Posted by Ciaran McNulty on 19th December 2008

Ciaran McNulty.

Not too hard today but a few unsatisfactory clues.

“” = homophone
* = anagram
< = reversed

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Posted in Guardian | 28 Comments »