Never knowingly undersolved.

Financial Times 12,980 / Aardvark

Posted by Gaufrid on January 21st, 2009


This was similar in a way to the Aardvark I blogged two weeks ago including some ‘different’ indicators, a couple of which I would question, as indicated below, though these didn’t impede the solving process. 11d is something of an enigma as I have been unable to parse it to my satisfaction. The blog would have been posted an hour earlier had it not been for this one clue!

1 FRONTIER  ON T (the northern) in FRIER (chip shop worker)
5 SPLICE  P (quietly) in SLICE (piece of cake)
9 BRASSICA  AS (when) SIC[k] (ill endlessly) in BRA (underwear)
10 OSTLER  OST (east, in German) L (lecturer) ER (royal)
12 EDGBASTON  D (500) *(BAGS) in ETON (school)
13 AITCH  A ITCH (long)
14 LARD  hidden in ‘popuLAR Demand’
16 ECHELON  C (college) HEL[p] (grant mostly) in *(ONE) – does grant = help? I suppose a college grant does help a student with his/her expenses.
19 RELEASE  *(E ALES) in [st]RE[et]
21 ROOK  OO (loves) in [d]R[a]K[e]
24 CONGA  CON (trick) G[o] A[miss]
27 NOTICE  TO reversed in NICE (agreeable)
28 HANG FIRE  H[ospital] A *(FINGER)
29 TANDEM  AND (joiner) in MET (encountered) reversed
30 NEBRASKA  BEN (peak) reversed ASK (quiz) in RA (artist)

1 FABLED  F (foot) ABLE (expert) D (departs)
2 ORANGE  O[pen] RANGE (cooker)
3 TESSA  [submi]T ESSA[y] (written composition spending year)
4 EXCITED  C (conservative) in EXITED (left)
7 IDLE TALK  L (line) ET AL (other people) in *(KID)
8 EARPHONE  E[nhance] *(HARP) ONE – ‘when producing’ as an anagram indicator?
11 KNEE  – is this K[itche]N EE (early English)? If so, how does ‘missing’ indicate ‘with centre removed’ or does ‘itche’ mean ‘s or is in some foreign language? Edit: See also comment #3
15 AVALANCHE  *(NAVAL) in ACHE (suffer) – ‘engineers’ as an anagram indicator?
17 PRECINCT  C-IN-C (army leader) in PRET (ready, in French) – not the most well-known French word!
18 PLANKTON  P (penny) N[ap] in *(TALK)
20 ERNE  [b]ERNE
21 ROSEATE  OS (jack) [scienc]E in RATE (class) – jack = sailor = Ordinary Seaman
22 RHEIMS  homophone of ‘reams’ (many papers)
23 STREGA  S (son) T[revo]R AGE (mature) reversed – a sweet, bright-yellow Italian liqueur flavoured with herbs
26 ELGAR  RAG (tabloid) LE (article abroad) reversed – ‘one used to compose’ = (dead) composer?

3 Responses to “Financial Times 12,980 / Aardvark”

  1. Persephone says:

    Hello Gaufrid
    I’m surprised at your comment about “pret” in 17 down – when working in London I get my lunch from Pret a Manger most days, so I think it’s pretty well known.
    I have to confess to being a big fan of Aardvark and his alter ego Scorpion in the Indy, and his attempts to find new anagram indicators usually hit the mark for me. I’m happy with “engineers” – perhaps a bit less so with “when producing”, but the intention was fairly plain in both instances. And the Elgar clue made me smile!

  2. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Persephone

    Well, it’s been a long time since I’ve visited any city (or town of any significant size), and I never see any TV adverts, so I am out of touch when it comes to modern retail outlets and have never heard of ‘Prêt a Manger’.

    With regard to ‘engineers’, it is like ‘confuses’ two weeks ago, the surface reading is improved but the word should really be ‘engineered’.

  3. Gaufrid says:

    11d The only possible explanation I have been able to come up with is that the ‘s’ at the end of kitchen’s is an abbreviation and the clue is intended to be read as:

    Kitchen, section missing, early English joint

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