Never knowingly undersolved.

Enigmatic Variations 888: Title by Hypnos

Posted by Dave Hennings on November 21st, 2009

Dave Hennings.

In this puzzle you were required to deduce the title of a work by a figure (why that word was used I know not; it sounded a bit cryptic, but turned out not to be). Three answers without definition neeeded to be jumbled to give this figure, and the extra letters in the wordplay defined two words which in turn suggested a definition of the work!

Completing the grid was fairly straightforward, and the extra letters spelt out NAVIGATION SYSTEM RECORD OF A SHIP’S PERFORMANCE, and the three undefined words were DICE BELL CLIME. The first of these, with the help of Bradford’s, defined DECCA LOG which in turn hints at DECALOGUE, ie THE TEN COMMANDMENTS (which goes under the grid). The figure in the preamble should therefore be GOD, but there aren’t enough letters! So it must be CECIL B DE MILLE, although he is not required to be entered or highlighted anywhere. Finally, the work’s main character and “corresponding figure” do have to be highlighted, and MOSES and CHARLTON HESTON (sort of in the shape of the two tablets) can be found in the grid.

A good puzzle from Hypnos: a nicely worked theme with lots of parts to uncover.

Solving time: about 90 minutes, I think.

Unfinished business: 21ac (for update, see comment 3 below)

ABC* = anagram
ABC< = reversal
abCDef = hidden
X = extra letters in the wordplay

1 N ABSCISSE intercept: A + BSC (science graduate) NISSE (benevolent creature)
8 DICE undefined: (EL CID)< (Spanish leader) – L (liberal)
12 A TEA SET service: TEASE (guy, vt) + TA (thanks)
13 V NADAL professional in court (ie tennis): VANDAL*
14 I SUPREMO principal: PIR (honorary title) E (east) in SUMO (wrestling)
15 G SESELI plant: SEE* in SLIG(O) (most of county)
16 A WEAN child, from Perth (Scotland): AWE (wonder) + A + N (new)
18 T EXACT absolutely correct: TEXT (words) about AC (bill)
20 I HIRERS those offering payment: HI (greeting) + IR (taxmen, ie Inland Revenue, HMRC that was) + ERS (source of bitterness, a plant)
21 O RICCIA plant: AIR< (publicity) about CO (company) C (clubs) + I (?); I cannot see the wordplay for the I
22 N SLOVENE east European: SLOVEN (poorly dressed person) + EN (nut)
24 S CARNOSE fleshy: NOSE (feature) with SCAR (mark) at front
28 Y TOSHER student out of college: TOSH (friend) + EYR(E) (Jane Eyre, dropping last)
32 S OUTTOP excel: OUT (on loan) + STOP (Australian stud); that’s stud as on football boot
35 T LOOTS officers (as in lieuts): TOOT (blast) in LS (Lesotho)
36 BELL undefined: B (black) + ELL (measure)
37 E INTONE chant: I + NET (catch) + ONE (singular)
38 M NITINOL alloy: NIT (fool) + MINO (raincoat) + L (left)
39 R MALLE French director: reversed in cELLAR Mistakenly; Louis Malle, French film director, most famous for Lacombe Lucien and Atlantic City
40 E ISATIN derivative of dye: SATIE (French composer) engaged by IN (popular); French composer of Gymnopédies fame
41 C ELEA Greek colony: LEA (meadow) behind CE (church)
42 O SCHOONER drink is held by (it): HOON (yob down under) in SOC(C)ER (game, half-hearted, ie only one C)
1 R ANSWER acknowledgement: RAN (managed) + SOWER (one broadcasting) – O (nothing)
2 D SEPAD warrant: SEP (month) kept by DAD (father)
3 O CARNAC monumental village: CARO (sculptor) + CAN< (tin); a village in northwest France renowned for its Neolithic stones
4 F SEMEIA divisions: FEME (woman, legally) in SIAM (old country) – M (money)
5 A STOURS battles: TOUR (period of service) in SAS (regiment)
6 S EASSEL easterly (in Moray Firth, ie Scotland): SS (ship) flanked by EASEL (support)
7 H SNEER contemptuos expression: N (nationalist) in SHEER (very thin)
9 I IDEATE imagine: in deesIDE A TIE-up
10 P CALCANEA bones: C (cold) + ([SAN A PLACE] – S [Surgeon, initially])*
11 S ELITE very best: EL (railroad) + SITE (position)
17 P OHIO it’s around Cleveland (city in Ohio): HIP (joint) held by OO (pair, as in spectacles); I think this clue should have had a couple of !! as well as the ?
19 E DIAGONAL direction for bishop (on a chessboard): DIAL (call) about A GONE (past)
23 R OOPS oh dear!: ROOPS (hoarse sounds)
25 F ROOTLE grub, vt and vi: R (recipe) + FOOTLE (trifle)
26 O STEERS guides: ST (street) + E (close to notablE) + EROS (statue in London)
27 R ETHNIC foreign: ETHIC (treatise) about RN (Niger)
28 M TONISH hip (as in modern): MOT< (test) + IS in N (new) H (hospital)
29 A SUBITO in haste: BUS< + AIT (island) + O (nothing)
30 N ROLLER wave: R (queen) + ONER about LL (lines)
31 CLIME undefined: C (Cuba) + LIME(Y) (Briton, snubbed)
33 C USNEA lichen: US (America) + NE (north east) + CA (California)
34 E LENIN revolutionary: LINE (course) about E (Spain) N (Norway)

4 Responses to “Enigmatic Variations 888: Title by Hypnos”

  1. Colin Blackburn says:

    Not certain on 21ac myself. I considered ICI (a company) but that gave an extra I and would have been unfair anyhow.

  2. nmsindy says:

    This was a very good puzzle, which took me a lot longer than Dave. Liked how all the thematic material was integrated. After filling the grid, I found CECIL B DE MILLE fairly quickly. Thought TEN COMMANDMENTS was likely then, but the confirmation of DECCA LOG came later, when I was away from the puzzle. MOSES came easily but not the rest – I spent a lot of time looking for TABLETS OF STONE (which also has 14 letters!), before twigging it was CHARLTON HESTON – so it was a very nice final touch that the outline was indeed in shape of those tablets. Thought the preamble was very fair.

  3. Hypnos says:

    Thanks for the excellent blog and comments. Apologies on 21 ac – there should have been “international” before company to account for the i.

  4. Dave Hennings says:

    Hypnos, thanks for that. I didn’t actually notice the omission until I came to do the blog, so it didn’t pose a problem. Also, on reflection, nms, I think it took me nearer two hours, so a good challenge.

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