Never knowingly undersolved.

Independent 7,225/Phi

Posted by Ali on December 11th, 2009


An interesting one this. I only solved one or two clues on my first pass and had no idea what the theme might be. As the grid started to fill up, I spotted that S was the only letter appearing in the right hand column, and eventually that G was the only letter appearing in the left hand column. This helped with filling the grid, but I still had no idea what the theme was! I eventually cottoned on to the Gilbert and Sullivan idea, by which time the thematic answers were pretty much all that was left. My G&S knowledge is unfortunately restricted to The Mikado (because we did it at school) and HMS Pinafore (from the Cape Fear episode of The Simpsons), so I needed Wikipedia’s help to polish it off.

Lovely clueing as ever from Mr. H, and my knowledge of light opera has increased ten-fold, so all good.

1 GOPHER – GOP (Grand Old Party) + HER
5 REDHEADS – ED + H[-ailed] in READS
10 YUCCAS – C + CU in SAY, all rev.
11 GRUDGINGLY – (DRUG)* + GIN + G[-lad]LY
12 TEES – SEE + T[-ide] rev.
13 GAMESOME – Presumably GAME + SOME[-rset], though not sure of the GAME = HALT bit
15 GABLES – B(orn) in GALES
16 GENOME – GEN + OME[-n]
18 DIALECTS – I’D rev. + (CASTLE)*
20 GAGA – G + AGA – ‘Classic range’ is a very good def. for AGA
22 GORIER – GO + RI[-d]ER
23 ROUNDUPS – UP in ROUNDS – Tricky, as I would usually expect this to be enumerated (5-3)
25 EGRESS – E.G + [-p]RESS
3 HIRED – RE in H I’D
4 RUDDIGORE – DIG OR in RUDE – The first of our G&S works
5 REFUGEE – REFU[-nded] + GEE
6/22 D’OYLY CARTE – DOYLY + CARTE – Only guessed this once all the checking letters were in place.
7 EXCITABLE – 1 in X in EC + TABLE
8 DEADEYE – DEAD + EYE – Character for HMS Pinafore
15 GRAND DUKE – GRAND ($1000) + DUKE (J.Wayne) – The 2nd G&S work
17 ENAMOUR – MANE rev. + OUR
18 DOOBREY – (BEDROO[-m])* + Y
16 THESPIS – P in THESIS – The 3rd G&S work
22 NADIR – (AND)* + I(nland) R(evenue)

8 Responses to “Independent 7,225/Phi”

  1. Eileen says:

    Hi Ali

    Re 13ac: ‘game’ and ‘halt’ both mean ‘lame’.

  2. nmsindy says:

    Good puzzle, not too hard. I saw the G&S in the outermost columns only very late on – my knowledge of the works is fairly limited too, tho what I’ve heard I did like. Most of my knowledge about them coming from puzzles. Favourite clue, REDHEADS.

  3. NealH says:

    Glad to know I’m not the only G & S ignoramus. Even after getting D’Oyly Carte, Ruddigore, Deadeye and Grand Duke, I still didn’t know what the theme was.

    Redheads was very clever. I didn’t know it meant red-headed, so I did spend some time looking through articles about Titian to see if he specialized in painting redheads.

  4. nmsindy says:

    Yes, the clue reminded me of Fergie, not the Man Utd one.

  5. mhl says:

    I think this was quite a bit tougher than most of Phi’s Friday puzzles – lots of lovely clues, of course, but I couldn’t finish it unaided (partly because of mistakenly putting in “glamour” (as in a fairy charm) instead of “enamour”…)

    It’s nice to see a mention of gopher in the crossword, and to find out that Firefox can still browse gopher servers :)

  6. Allan_C says:

    So that’s how you spell ‘doobrey’! (18d) heard the word many times but never seen it in print/writing before.

  7. Michael Vnuk says:

    I had a little difficulty finding this puzzle in the site. Puzzle number in header should be 7225, not 7725.

  8. Gaufrid says:

    Thanks Michael. Error corrected.

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