Never knowingly undersolved.

Financial Times 13,135 / Cinephile

Posted by Gaufrid on July 22nd, 2009


A surprisingly easy puzzle for a Wednesday, particularly considering it was set by Cinephile, with a theme involving British Prime Ministers from 1963 to date and a ‘hopeful’.

Early solving of 4a quickly revealed the theme and the rest was plain sailing, something 13a used to enjoy. One or two pleasing surfaces (eg 16a,13d) but overall not much to get one’s teeth into.

1 BRANCH  B (second) RANCH (place for cattle)
4 WILSON  LSO (capital musicians) in WIN (success)
8 CASTILE  LIT (bed, in French) reversed in CASE
9 PLUMAGE  PLUM (best) AGE (time)
12 TATE  cd
13 HEATH  dd
14 THATCHER  THAT (who) C (caught) HER (lady)
16 STEP ON IT  dd
18 MAJOR  dd
20 HOME  dd
21 BAROMETRIC  BA (graduate) ROME (capital) *(CRIT)
23 CAMERON  cd
24 STRETCH  dd
26 CRISIS  C[ruise] R (river) ISIS (Thames)

1 BLAIR  BL (barrel, what’s shortly to be rolled out) AIR (song)
2 ANTENNA  ANTE (before) ANN (girl) reversed
3 CALLAGHAN  CALL (visit) GHANA (African country) with the A misplaced
6 SEMITIC  SEMI (half) TIC[ker] (half heart)
10 STATUTORY  TUTOR (teacher) in STAY (support)
13 HOT POTATO  A TOP (a crown) reversed in *(TOOTH)
15 ALMA MATER  MA MA (degrees) in ALTER (change)
17 PRESENT  dd
19 JITTERS  JIT (just in time) *(REST)
21 BROWN  dd
22 INCAS  IN CAS[e] (lest English not there)

7 Responses to “Financial Times 13,135 / Cinephile”

  1. Andrew says:

    Even easier that today’s easy Brendan in the Guardian, I would say..

    (Blimey, it’s quiet over here.)

  2. Andrew says:

    …easier THAN…

  3. liz says:

    Yes, I got thru the Brendan so quickly, I thought I would take advantage of the new FT format to tackle this one and found it was a breeze, which is not a word I would normally associate with Araucaria/Cinephile!

  4. mhl says:

    Trickier than today’s Brendan if you don’t spot the theme, I think…

    Since I feel the need to comment when computer-related or internet-era acronyms come up, it’s nice to see the use of JIT for “just-in time” from Cinephile!

  5. Eileen says:


    I’m sure you’re right – it depends how quickly you spotted the theme but, once you did [my lead-in was 23ac] the clues were easier than we would expect from Rev John, I think. [I didn’t know JIT, though!]

    It’s nice to see Guardian friends over here – maybe there will be more now that the format is more friendly, which will be good for the bloggers, who fairly often get no response at all.

  6. liz says:

    My entry to the puzzle was Wilson. I was thinking along sporting lines for a while. And Eileen, mhl and Andrew, nice to see you here too. I need to solve on paper so the new format has made a big difference to me, tho I usually find one puzzle a day is enough!

    I didn’t know JIT either.

  7. Andrew says:

    Like Gaufrid, I got WILSON first and guessed the theme from that (unlike that youngster mhl I’m old enough to remember all the PMs involved!). But I also work in IT so JIT was familiar too.

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