Never knowingly undersolved.

Guardian 24798 / Rufus

Posted by mhl on September 7th, 2009


I’m afraid I’m under thesis deadline pressure this week, but my partner very kindly offered to write notes on this one, so I’m just reposting what she wrote…

[Links to the puzzle as HTML, PDF and Java Applet]

5. BONSAI Cryptic definition
6. SLIP UP PUPILS = “students”, reversed
9. AGHAST HAS = “swindles” in (TAG)*
10. RETURNED Double definition
11. WING Double definition
12. PEA SHOOTER A great cryptic definition
18. FLIGHT DECK FLIGHT = “stairs” + DECK = “decorate”
21. LAID L + AID
22. GARDENIA (DRAINAGE)*; “proper” being the anagram indicator
24. ENVIED VIE = “to compete” in END = “final”
25. TOP HAT Another excellent cryptic definition
1. ENTANGLE (TEN)* + ANGLE = “fish”
2. LAPTOP APT = “likely” in LOP = “cut”
3. FLETCHER Cryptic definition
4. OPORTO PORT = “side at sea” in OO = “scoreless draw”
5. BIGWIG Double definition; WIG can mean “to scold”
7. PREFER P = “quietly” + REFER = “mention”
8. BREAK THE LAW BREAK = “make” (?) + (WEALTH)* Thanks to Gazza for the correction, this is a reverse anagram: if you BREAK (THE LAW) you might MAKE WEALTH
14. INTENDED Double definition
15. ALL RIGHT Double definition
16. ALSACE Cryptic definition, as in the area of France next to Lorraine
17. DIRECT Double definition
19. GODIVA Cryptic definition
20. KOWTOW WOK reversed + TOW = “tug”

16 Responses to “Guardian 24798 / Rufus”

  1. Gazza says:

    8d. If you break (i.e. make an anagram) of “the law” you make wealth.

  2. mhl says:

    Thanks, Gazza – I’ve updated the post.

  3. Bryan says:

    Many thanks, mhl

    Rather more challenging than usual for a Monday offering, I thought, but all the clues were perfectly fair and none of the solutions was obscure.

    Very enjoyable.

    Thanks, Rufus

  4. liz says:

    Thanks mhl (and partner). I also found this quite hard for Monday, and for Rufus, but the usual good surfaces. 12ac was funny.

  5. The trafites says:

    Is 5ac really a cd? I thought this was a double def., as bonsai is the bowl that the trees (woods indoor) get their name from?


  6. cholecyst says:

    Nick, you’re right. Cmambers gives:- ETYMOLOGY: 1920s: Japanese, from bon tray or bowl + sai cultivation.

  7. Eileen says:

    Thanks, both, for the blog.

    I missed PEA SHOOTER on the first run-through, and initially put in PRAISE for 7dn, which just about works, but held things up for a minute or two. [I wasn’t really happy with ‘praise = favour’ – but then ‘refer’ really needs ‘to’ to mean ‘mention’, which can = ‘raise’].

    Favourite clues: 12ac,8dn and 19dn.

  8. William says:

    Good grief – finished Rufus on my own! Anyone help me with 24ac though? Can’t make envy equal begrudge no matter how I stretch it.

  9. Bryan says:


    It’s VIE within END.

    Therefore ENVIED = Begrudge.


  10. mhl says:

    William – well done! One of the definitions of “begrudge” as a transitive verb in Chambers is “to envy the possession of”. I think they are substitutable in sentences, e.g. “to envy someone something” and “to begrudge someone something”… Was that what you meant?

  11. don says:

    8 Down

    Simply brilliant.

    Though I didn’t get it!

  12. rightback says:

    I loved PEA SHOOTER, TEA INTERVAL and TOP HAT. Thanks for the blog mhl, especially BONSAI (I’d put in ‘binbag’ for reasons I can’t now remember or explain).

  13. Mike Laws says:

    Is a pea-shooter really a weapon? “Toy” would have worked better in the clue.

  14. William says:

    Thank you mhl & Bryan – I had the word play, and I now see the definition. I would simply never use ‘begrudge’ in that way. I begrudge politicians and bankers their outrageous perks, but I certainly don’t envy them – as in ‘wish them for myself’. Hey-ho, thanks to you both.

  15. Martin Searle says:

    I agree regarding the begrudge / envy difference, whatever Chambers might say. Benighted publication that it is.

    Wish I hadn’t developed a fixation re ‘banyan’ rather than pressing on for ‘bonsai’.

    Very much liked ‘break the law’.

  16. RB says:

    Liked peashooter, godiva, and break the law!

    In 24A, I can’t see the need for “round”. If compete=vie, then we have two containment indicators: in and round.

Leave a Reply

Don't forget to scroll down to the Captcha before you click 'Submit Comment'

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

eight − = 4