Fifteensquared

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Financial Times 13,246 by Mudd

Posted by Pete Maclean on December 10th, 2009

Pete Maclean.

Prize puzzle from the Weekend FT of November 28

I enjoyed this puzzle from Mudd. I especially liked 25A, 28A and 2D.

Across
1. BRIGHT – double definition
4. DETACHED – TED backwards (Edward’s back) + ACHED (hurt)
10. CHAFFINCH – CHAFF (remains) + IN (in) + CH (church)
11. CANOE – O (love) in CANE (stick)
12. ROOM – MOOR (North African) reversed
13. DISCIPLINE – IN (in) in DISCIPLE (student)
15. SCARLET – anagram of CLARETS
16. LEARNT – LEAR (creation of the Bard) + NT (books)
19. COWARD – CO (joint) + WARD (responsibility of the Guardian). I thought of “ward” early on but this clue still stumped me for a while.
21. PALETTE – LET (allowed) in PATE (spread)
23. INFLATABLE – anagram of FINAL + TABLE (board)
25. TIFF – [s]TIFF (body beheaded)
27. HOIST – I (one) in HOST (many)
28. OVERWHELM – OVER (period of cricket) + W (wicket) + HELM (where captain is)
29. PARTYING – Y (variable) in PARTING (departure)
30. UNITED – reverse hidden word

Down
1. BACKREST – BACK (champion) + REST (the field)
2. INAMORATO – anagram of TO ROMANIA
3. HUFF – double definition
5. ETHICAL – anagram of THE + I (I) + CAL (state)
6. ACCEPTABLE – C (cold) + anagram of PET all in A CABLE (a message)
7. HINDI – hidden word
8. DEEPEN – DEE (river) + PEN (swan — from 26D)
9. ENLIST – anagram of LINES + T (square). I am not convinced that “wavy” is a great anagram indicator but I do like this clue.
14. PLEASANTRY – L (left) in PEASANTRY (country folk)
17. NUTRIMENT – MEN (pieces) in anagram of TURN IT
18. PERFUMED – [answe]R in anagram of FED UP ME
20. DRAGOON – O (nothing) in DRAGON (battleaxe)
21. PULLET – PULL (trail) + ET (film)
22. BISHOP – BISH (mistake) + OP (work). I believe I have not heard the word “bish” used in many years but it was a very common term during my schooldays 5 decades ago.
24. FRIAR – FRI[day] (a day) + A (a) + R (king)
26. SWAN – SWAN[k] (swagger cut short)

2 Responses to “Financial Times 13,246 by Mudd”

  1. Sil van den Hoek says:

    Many thanks, Pete, for the blog.
    As always I enjoyed Mudd, but I can’t say that I found it very difficult this time.
    It was published on the same Saturday that his Guardian crossword (as Paul) was rather easy as well, so maybe he was in a friendly mood.

    My favourites were the very smooth 13ac (DISCIPLINE), the simple but effective anagram of SCARLET (15ac) and one that you mentioned too (OVERWHELM) – although I don’t know anything about cricket (and don’t make an effort – I don’t wánt to know either …).

    I also liked 5d (ETHICAL), but I always wonder why CAL is accepted for California (CA is the official code). Bradford’s (Crossword Dictionary) says: the abbreviation for California is “Cal.”, but then other abbreviations should be acceptable as well, like “Alas.” for Alaska (a lot of cryptic potential) and “Miss.” for Mississippi, but you never see them.

    Speaking about Bradford’s, it gives ‘wave(s)’ as anagrind, so I would say, not much wrong with ‘wavy’ either.
    I don’t mind setters using unusual anagram indicators anyway, as long as it is inevitably clear from the clue.

    The only time my eyebrows made some movement was in 11ac.
    CANOE = “the transport”? So, with “the”?
    But then I think it is there, because “love” and “the transport” fit well together for the surface.
    Understandable, but still a bit misleading.
    But that’s Cryptic Land, isn’t it?

  2. Pete Maclean says:

    Hi Sil,

    I do not have Bradford’s but, after looking up “wavy” in Chambers, I still feel it is marginal for an anagrind. Like you, I am fine with unusual anagram indicators.

    Yes, that CAL for California seems a bit of an anomaly albeit an anomaly that one gets used to. Wikipedia says that abbreviations for California are CA, Calif. and US-CA. Here in the Golden State, one thinks of CA as being the standard abbreviation with Cal used typically in shortened versions of names such as CalFed for California Federal or CalTech for the California Institute of Technology.

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