Fifteensquared

Never knowingly undersolved.

Independent 7,074 by Scorpion

Posted by Simon Harris on June 18th, 2009

Simon Harris.

I found this one a pretty stiff challenge, but that may simply be because when I see that the setter is Scorpion I tend to panic a little. The wordplay is complex, but very well-worked and everything comes together nicely. NERD was probably my favourite.

*=anag, []=dropped, <=reversed, hom=homophone, cd=cryptic definition, dd=double definition.

Across
1 BASK – B + ASK.
3 GRINDS DOWN – GR + (D in SWINDON*).
9 INTEGRATE – (IN T[h]E GREAT)*.
11 ACTOR – [ta]ROT CA[rd]<. Ref. Tom Cruise. I’ll keep my thoughts on him to myself!
12 A BIT ON THE SIDE – HEDONIST* “during” (A BITE).
14 TUGGER – (G[reen] G[rass]) “trespassing” TRUE*.
15 VALHALLA – (ALL + A[ppreciate] + H[ousehold] + LAV)<.
17 NEMATODE – DONE* “fencing” TAME<.
22/24 A LEVEL PLAYING FIELD – A LEVEL + PLAYING FIELD.
25 AERIALIST – (A + SITE*) “includes” LAIR<.
26 ON THE SKIDS – HONEST* + KIDS.
27 BYES – B[atsman] + YES.
Down
1 BRIGANTINE – BRIE “contains” (NAG< + TIN).
2 SITTING PRETTY – (STING “rakes in” IT) + PRETTY.
4 RIALTO – RIO “embraces” ALT. “Alt” is German for “old”.
5 NYE BEVAN – ABE[rga]VENNY.
6 SPANISH ARMADA – SPA + (HARM “in” DIANA*).
7 OATMEAL – O + ATM + AL.
8 NERD – [compute]R in DEN<. A fine &lit.
10 GO OVER THE EDGE – (0 + OVERT + HEED) in EGG<.
13 LARYNGITIS – (SIT ANGRILY)*.
16 IDLE TALK – ([newshoun]D + TALE*) in ILK.
18 MEANEST – ME + A NEST.
20 TRINITY – dd. I’m reliably informed that there are Trinity Colleges at at least Cambridge, Oxford and Dublin universities.
21 SPIRED – SPIED “around” R[uins].
23 AFRO – (FOR A)*.

6 Responses to “Independent 7,074 by Scorpion”

  1. nmsindy says:

    Tremendous puzzle – clues so well-constructed with some excellent surface readings. Maybe I’m getting used to the Scorpion style but I can solve them more quickly that when Scorpion first appeared. Re Trinity, Dublin University is Trinity College. I doubt however if that is the one referred to.

  2. Colin Blackburn says:

    I don’t know, first Christ Church from Araucaria now Trinity from Scorpion! Practically the first clue I got too.

    In 7dn you have a typo in the word play. It’s ALE[x]* rather than AL. I couldn’t imagine a word with ATM in it and spent some time trying to add TELLER onto things unsuccessfully.

  3. Conrad Cork says:

    I agree with nmsindy. Tremendous puzzle. Lapidary surfaces, ingenious construction. I hope Scorpion lurks around here and knows how much his work is appreciated.

  4. Ali says:

    Great stuff, this. Definitely one of the hardest we’ve seen in a while I think (I was defeated by a handful of clues), but so many good surfaces and heaps of clever wordplay. Loved the NERD clue too!

  5. Richard says:

    This was a very satisfying solve – difficult, but well worth the effort. Thanks, Scorpion.

  6. GWEP says:

    I thought 9ac was IN T[h]E GREAT broadcast (ie “on the radio”) = GRATE.

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