Never knowingly undersolved.

Azed 1953

Posted by bridgesong on November 15th, 2009


“Words may be false and full of art; sighs are the natural language of the heart”, by Thomas Shadwell is the quotation referred to here. The second part is obtained by the letters which are misprinted in the clues, the first part could be said to describe the setter’s aim. A normal misprints puzzle confines the misprints to the definition part of the clue, but here there are a number of clues with the misprint in the wordplay, even in anagrams. Having said that, there were a couple of fairly easy clues such as 35 across, 9 and 20 down to get started with and I found that it took me not much longer than usual to solve.  I’ve put the misprinted words in italics in each case.

There is the usual quotient of obscure words;   composing the clues so as to include a misprint proved surprisingly tricky, as I discovered when composing my competition entry.  In the circumstances it would be churlish to complain about surface readings.

Some years ago Azed commented that he might take advantage of a coincidence between the number of a puzzle and a significant date in history to introduce a theme, but there’s no reference here to the Coronation or the conquest of Everest.

1 BISTORT BITS*(bite)+ORT. Another word for this is adderwort, and it’s there that Chambers gives the reference to curing snakebite.
7 FAGUS AG(silver – for salver) in FUS(s).   It’s the Latin name for beech.
12 PIPERIDINE PERI + D + I in PINE. Here the misprint is tripping for gripping, although my working hypothesis (before I worked out the quote) was trapping instead of tripping.
13 CRANTS C + RANTS. Sung for hung. It’s a word found in Hamlet, meaning the wreath hung over a maiden’s grave.
14 OLDMAN (h)OL(e) + DAMN*. The anagrind is slued (for glued); it’s an alternative spelling of slewed.  Apparently it’s an Australian usage.
15 AIRFLOW Cleverly hidden in maidenhair flowers. Draught for drought.
17 GREENEYE REEN in GEY + E. Rather for gather. It’s a small fish.
18 ADDIO ADD + I + 0. Tote for tots.  Vale here is the Latin word meaning farewell.
19 ARTEL LATER* (for lager); here the misprint is in the letters that form the (easy) anagram. Artel is one of those words which crop up fairly frequently in Azed crosswords.
21 LOWLY L(eague) + OWLY, which means owlish or dull-looking. Short for sport.
25 CAPLE CAP + LE(d). Led for lad. It’s an old word for a horse.
27 ELATERIN ELATER + IN. In for if. Elater is a skipjack beetle, and elaterin a purgative.
30 OECISTS CE(rev) in SO IT’S*. Backing for bucking. I must confess to never having come across this word before.
31 TRAUMA The competition word.
32 RUSSEL RU + LESS(rev). Rugger for rigger.
33 INGRATIATE RAT (=cur – for cup) + I in EATING*.
34 CUISH I in CUSH(y). Last for lust. The term refers to a kind of armour.
35 HAWSERS A S-SHREW*, with lines for fines.
2 IPRINDOLE I + RIND in POLE (for pore).
3 SPARID SPA + RID. Sea for see.
4 TINFOIL NIT(rev) + FILO*. Ninny for pinny.
5 RESORB R + BROSE(rev). Brose is a kind of porridge, I think that the misprint is that it needs raising, rather than raisins, but it’s not entirely clear.
6 TROWEL LET(rev) around ROW. Put for pet.
7 FILO I in FLO(at). At for it. Surprising to find this as the answer, when the same word appears in the clue to 4 down.
8 ADD-ON AD + DON. The misprint is gangster for ganister. I spent a long time trying to work out the relevance of banister!  A don of course is a term for a Mafia boss.
9 GIMLET M in GILET. Lime for limp; apparently a gimlet is a cocktail made with gin or vodka and lime-juice.
10 SENSELESSLY SEN(ior) + (Monica) SELES + SLY. The misprint is done for Dane; one of the definitions of “sly” is “done with artful dexterity”.
11 ACATALEPTIC TALE in CAPI ACT*. Fiction for diction. It’s a philosophical term.
16 EYELETEER I think that the wordplay here is a homophone of Islay + tier. The misprint is sight for sighs, and the meaning is that an eyeleteer is an instrument for making eyelet-holes, which are spy-holes, and thus only used by one person at a time.
20 RAPISTS STRIP A* + S. Shilling for swilling.
22 WARAGI A RAG in WI. Person for parson; a rag can mean a worthless person.
23 WROATH W(rite)R + OATH. Ruth for ruts; it’s a Shakespearean word.
24 PIERIA PIE + AIR(rev). State for stats. One of the meanings of pie is a mixed state. Pieria appears in Chambers under the entry for Pierian, so it isn’t hard to find, and refers to the land of the Muses (and is thus an inspiring place).
26 PASSEE PAS + SEE. Seat for sect. See can mean the office of a bishop, or his seat; pas can mean action.
28 TOURS Rounds for bounds. It’s a French city.
29 AMAH A(merican) M(edical) A(ssociation) + H(ospital). Wet for wee. An amah seems very similar to an ayah; both crop up with a fair degree of regularity in Azed’s crosswords.

3 Responses to “Azed 1953”

  1. sidey says:

    Nice blog bridgesong. I had trapping instead of gripping too. Not many words start SIAH… Once again the ODQ’s index made things difficult, well my edition does, I had to confirm with the on-line version through my library. Definitely raising in 5 down, brose is raised on entry.

  2. Andrew Kitching says:

    ‘Greeneye’ was last in at 17, and I didn’t understand the word play. Excellent blog!

    A tough puzzle for a novice like me. Had to get some tips from an AZED veteran!
    The competition word proved a challenge too- getting a mis printed word to make clue sense made me realise what a ‘tour de force’ this was. AZED’s ‘wrong numbers’ puzzle from a few months back was of similar quality. I wonder what he has planned for Christmas?

  3. liz says:

    Thanks for blog, bridgesong. I only got a few of these, enough to see that the end of the quotation was ‘of the heart’ and enough to work out how to solve the clues, but found it v difficult and gave up in the end. Must try harder next time!

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