Never knowingly undersolved.

Guardian 24,805 – Boatman in Conflict

Posted by Uncle Yap on September 15th, 2009

Uncle Yap.

dd = double definition
cd = cryptic definition
rev = reversed or reversal
ins = insertion
cha = charade
ha = hidden answer
*(fodder) = anagram

Quite an easy puzzle with the conflict theme not fully exploited (e.g 7D where fighting was used instead of conflict, probably for fear of repeating the same device as 15A)

8 SCHEDULE Ins of C (first letter of classic) in SHED (another setter in the Guardian stable aka Dogberry in FT) + ULE (sounds like you’ll)
9 EARWAX A beautiful &lit clue *(aware) + X (cross)
10 SPAT Cha of SP (starting prices or odds, starting) + AT
11 SUCCESSIVE SUCCESS (achiever) + ins of V (victory) in IE (id est, that is)
12 FLIGHT Ins of L (first letter of locked) in FIGHT (conflict)
14 NOT A WORD A tichy clue (tongue in cheek) about a non-word
15 COWARDS Ins of WAR (conflict) in CODS (barracks, hoaxes or pokes fun at)
17 HANDBAG This clue brings back old times. I remember my student-life in the UK in 1971 carrying a placard around Newcastle, reading “Margaret Thatcher, Milk Snatcher“. I also remember the quote attributed to Sir Julian Critchley (1930–2000) “She cannot see an institution without hitting it with her handbag” The Spoonerism is Banned hag (outlawed old witch)
20 MAGNOLIA *(animal go)
22 ROWING cd
23 WEEKNIGHTS Cha of WEE (little) KNIGHTS (chaps who went out to fight)
24 DART Rev of TRAD (traditional or old fashioned)
25 ASHORE ha
26 EITHER-OR Ins of HERO (leading fighter) in *(tire)

1 ACAPULCO Cha of A CAP (a limit) + ins of L (last letter of alcohol) in O (genteel) CO (company) What a lovely definition! I remembered Elvis Pressley (or his double) diving down in a 1960’s film, Fun in Acapulco
2 LEFT Ins of F (first letter of fighter) in LET (allowed)
5 DEMENTIA Cha of D (last letter of sad) E (last letter of life)+ *(inmate)
6 GRASS WIDOW 8(wig as sword)
7 WAIVER Ins of I’ve (Boatman’s) in WAR (fighting)
13 GRANNY KNOT Ins of NY (New York) in RANK -> RANNYK inserted into GNOT (from the ins of N, first letter of national into GOT)
16 DULCIMER *(cruel dim)
18  ANN ARBOR ANN (an extended) ‘ARBOR (‘aven) using the American spelling for harbour
19 CASHIER Cha of CASH (money) IE (that is, a repeat of the same device in 11A) R (last letter of never)
21 AT EASE A tease (badger)
22 RESITS I find this hard to parse. If relaxed is REST, then this seems like a case of indirect anagram fodder
24 DUEL sounds like DUAL (two)

40 Responses to “Guardian 24,805 – Boatman in Conflict”

  1. mike says:

    Thanks Uncle Yap. Not easy for me as, stupidly, I started with MASSACRE for 20ac.

  2. ACP says:

    For 22dn, is ‘second-time’ meant to be ‘tIme’ ? Therefore RES(I)TS ?

  3. Chunter says:

    in 1dn ‘genteel’ gives U, not O.

  4. Bryan says:

    Many thanks, Uncle Yap, I really enjoyed this.

    I knew that 1d just had to be ACAPULCO but I was flummoxed as to the ‘city of dangerous dives’ until you identified the Elvis connection. (I’ve never seen any of his movies.)

    It’s always nice to find out why.

  5. Eileen says:

    Mike – Snap! 20ac: MASSACRE: anagram of ASS and CREAM – fitted the [wrong] definition – made perfect sense – if only I could have explained ‘and go’!] Then DULCIMER set me straight.

    I loved the WEE KNIGHTS – and EARWAX!

  6. Eileen says:

    I meant ‘and go to deliver’.

  7. Bryan says:

    Like Mike (1) and Eileen (5) I had discovered MASSACRE but. having previously got 19d CASHIER, I then dug deeper before landing MAGNOLIA who was less apparent.

    I wonder if Boatman had Magnolia Hawks, the leading lady of Show Boat, in mind?

  8. IanN14 says:

    Sorry, but I wasn’t happy with 2d.(leading fighter for F), & 22d.(second-time for I)
    [All a bit “first post” for my liking]
    19d. (never-ending for R) is better, though.
    Also, I can’t really see any indication of the hidden word answers at 25ac. and, especially, 3d.
    But I liked 6d. & 23ac.

  9. Phaedrus says:

    EARWAX was fun; many of the others were rather perfunctory.

    Only thing that slowed my progress was writing SHORES instead of ASHORE for 25ac – foolish!

  10. The trafites says:

    I too had ‘MASSACRE’ for a while…


  11. John says:

    There are many nice touches, spoiled by the missing inclusion indicators pointed out by Ian @ #8, and I also question “fleet” (adjective) = DART (verb), and “an achiever” = SUCCESS.

  12. John says:

    p.s. Re “fleet” I appreciate there must at one time have been a verb from which we have retained “fleeting” (and I’m sure it’s in the dreaded Chambers) but when did anyone ever hear it used as one.

  13. Chris says:

    Does no one else have issues with 5d? It doesn’t work as an &lit (although it’s clearly trying to), meaning that part of the clue is doing double work as definition and cryptic fodder.

    Pretty good puzzle, nonetheless.

  14. Craig Jones says:

    IanN14 #8 – Fear not, I’m don’t plan to ask why these are unacceptable 😉

  15. IanN14 says:

    Oh, thanks Craig…

  16. C & J says:

    Surely 22d is RE(about) IS and S(econd) T(ime) relaxed or anagram, definition ‘exams”?

  17. JamieC says:

    Chris: I didn’t mind 5d. I read ‘madness’ as the definition and all the other parts of the clue have an individual job (provided you accept ‘succumbs’ as an anagrid, which is perhaps debatable), but I did have your objection to 15a (cowards are people who shun conflict, but ‘conflict’ is also part of the wordplay) and 22d (the definition is ‘second time exams’ but you need ‘second time’ for the I though perhaps the definition could be simply ‘exams’)

    Overall a bit disappointing as I normally like Boatman.

  18. Brian Harris says:

    Thought this was pretty good stuff today. Struggled with a few but eventually cracked the whole thing. Some very clever cluing – eg 9ac and 23ac, and always like Spoonerisms in clues.

  19. IanN14 says:

    …sorry, Craig; I’m back.
    C & J @16.

    Surely not even a particularly loose Libertarian would suggest having an anagram indicator in between the words (or initials) of the letters to be anagrammatised (is that a word?).
    Oh, unless it’s “mixed with” or some such…
    No, I think it’s intended to be “second time” for “I” and I think it’s wrong.
    So sue me…

  20. radchenko says:

    Had massacre too…

    But got about halfway in 15 mins, then totally, totally hit a brick wall, and could make no progress at all.

    Which is a pity, as some of the charades are really quite clever.

  21. don says:

    Can anyone, at this late stage, explain ‘city of dangerous dives’ please?

  22. Richard says:

    There are high cliffs at Acapulco from which the local young men dive into the sea. Google ‘Acapulco diving’ for a picture.

  23. Dave Ellison says:

    I had the same experience as radchenko – got through the right hand side quickly, then struggled therafter. I reasoned the same as C & J for 22d. I also had SHORES for 25a for a while, but wasn’t (quite correctly) satisfied with it.

  24. IanN14 says:

    Re: comments @16 & 23 regarding 22d.
    I give up…
    (as I’m sure some of you will be pleased to hear. Craig? Dave?).
    Not the crosswords, obviously, but I shall try not to venture an opinion again, as I seem to be going against everyone else’s grain…
    Perhaps it IS just me.

    Next time I’m on, I shall be non-judgmental, I promise…

  25. don says:

    Re22 Thanks Richard.

  26. Eileen says:

    Ian, I’m with you. I took ‘second time’ as ‘I’ and thought of your ‘first post’ immediately!

    I also agree about 25ac and 3dn.

  27. Dave Ellison says:

    Ian #24. About 22d.

    I didn’t like it; I just, in passing, thought that was where the letters of the answer came from, and then left it. RESTS about I just about works, but I don’t like RESTS for “is relaxed”.

    How about (tongue in cheek!): IS RElaxed with laxed indicating anagram; followed by ST about = TS?!

  28. Derek Lazenby says:

    Hmm. well it looks like you guys have been having a ball dissecting this, I only wish I could join in, but I only managed a few. That probably relates to this being the full day of chemo.

    Still, even that was worth it as the first I got was HANDBAG, just had to laugh. Visitors and staff, mainly no-xword people raised a laugh when I explained it, so if they can laugh, that must make this a pretty fine clue on the humour front.

    For late posters yesterday, there is a reply I just did. Nice to find reasons for thank yous.

  29. Dave Ellison says:

    Also agree with you and Eileen about 23ac and 3d.

    I thought the Xword was on the whole dis-satisfying for a Boatman

  30. Derek Lazenby says:

    Sorry, meant first full day

  31. IanN14 says:

    Thank you Eileen.
    I’m glad that maybe it’s NOT just me…
    I don’t normally use these, but 8)

    And, nice try Dave, but I think that’s stretching it a bit (and I can tell [by the tongue in cheek], deep in your heart, you know that too). Funnily enough, the only part of the clue which worked for me was the “rests” = “is relaxed”…
    Just shows how differently our minds all work, I suppose…

    And finally, Derek,
    Hang on in there. My wife went through all that last year, but she’s emerged a new person.
    Good luck.

  32. Sil van den Hoek says:

    To be honest, didn’t do this crossword today (spent time on yesterday’s Dante in the FT), but was still tempted to look at the blog.

    Saw EITHER/OR, looked at the explanation, and indeed: déjà vu.
    Only four days ago Puck had the same word, also inserting HERO into something, not ‘tire’ but ‘rite’.
    What a coincidence.
    And funny, that nobody (so far) noticed it.

    And I saw ACAPULCO.
    When (Guardian’s) Paul was in Brazil, I sent in a clue for his clue competition, my 100th, describing that same word, ACAPULCO.
    “Bill meets Paul, unexpected company in Latin America”
    Sorry that I’m off topic, but Boatman just reminded me of that.

  33. Chunter says:


    I noticed the coincidence but didn’t get round to mentioning the fact.

    The practice of jumping off cliffs, bridges, etc is known as tombstoning (not yet in Chambers or the OED).

  34. SteveM says:

    Bit late to the party, but thought I’d mention some subsidiary wordplay that seems to have been overlooked here. I’d agree that in 12a ‘retreat’ = Flight and ‘locked in conflict’ = F(l)ight, but couldn’t see what ‘from the start’ was doing there until the penny dropped: F (from) + LIGHT (‘the start’, as in ‘let there be light’ – the biblical ‘start’ in Genesis) Or am I reading to much into it?

  35. Craig Jones says:

    Ian @ 14: Think we have a misunderstanding somewhere, why would I be pleased to hear that you are giving up?! My original question (F—- P—, which I am reluctant to mention again!) was genuinely from a newbie who rarely completes five clues, never mind the full thing. I was just trying to learn what is or isn’t acceptable in the crossword world, so I know what to look for in future – I now realise that there is no definite answer to this question! For what it’s worth, I don’t like ‘second time’ as an indicator for I either.

  36. Craig Jones says:

    Of course, that should say Ian @ 24 (not 14) :-(

  37. IanN14 says:

    I don’t know if you’re still reading this, but if you are, I’m sorry.
    I really wasn’t being very serious about it all (they’re only crosswords, after all) as you will see if you visit today’s Chifonie blog.
    I just used your name (and Dave Ellison’s) because you were the most recent to question my (I imagine annoying) pedantry. I know you weren’t even involved in the “resits” debate anyway…
    Good luck with your future solving; when you’ve been doing it as long as I have maybe you’ll find fault with clues that aren’t as sound as others. (So second time is no good, but first post’s alri……Sorry…..sorry. Won’t happen again…).
    See you around on these pages soon, (I’ve changed my mind about the judgmental thing).
    Seriously, all the best,

  38. Craig Jones says:

    No need to apologise… I have no doubt that I will be finding fault with clues one day (there are plenty that I don’t understand at the moment, but that’s not quite the same thing).

  39. Dave Ellison says:

    I am all for pedantry, but I wasn’t aware I was questioning any pedantry on your part, Ian (it was certainly not my intention); I think my original statement must have been misconstruable, though that was not intended.


  40. IanN14 says:

    Hi Dave, if you’re still there.
    I promise I wasn’t intending to accuse anyone of anything.
    Your name cropped up, as I was saying to Craig, because of recent replies in the Rover blog.
    I was just naming names for “comedic effect” and yours were handy…
    (I know it may have ended up seeming a bit facetious; I’m sorry)

    Anyway, nothing wrong with a bit of trivial debate…

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=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

8 − five =