Never knowingly undersolved.

Guardian 24,882 – Rufus

Posted by Andrew on December 14th, 2009


I’m short of time today, so apologies for a brief blog. Either this was harder than a typical Rufus, or I just wasn’t on his wavelength. Some of the cryptic definitions seemed a bit feeble too.

* = anagram
dd = double definition
cd = cryptic definition
< = reverse

8. FLEET dd
9. JOAN OF ARC Seems like a straight definition, but maybe I’m missing some allusion here
10. ANGST Hiden in gANGSTers
12. SNICKS cd
13. EDGEHILL EDGE + HILL – site of a battle in the Civil War (I think)
30. VENDETTAS VEND + STATE* – “rows (of houses, i.e. families)” to rhyme with “cows” for the definition
2. PINNACLE I don’t get this (apart from pinnacle = tip) – some nautical reference?
3. FLUFFS cd (just about)
5. CLINCH dd – I think the boxing meaning refers to holding on the one’s opponent
6. VESSEL dd (just about)
11. OGLE cd – “regard” = “look at”
14. IMP I + MP
15. LEN Hidden in vocaL ENcouragement
16. KIP dd
17. EAR dd
18. UNDO dd
20. SACRISTY cd – place for storing a church’s valuables, which I suppose could be “good” investments.
21. DERIVES REVISED* (at first I was fooled into thinking it should be an anagram of VERSION)
23. OFFEND OFF (not on) + END (purpose)
26. SQUEAL cd

27 Responses to “Guardian 24,882 – Rufus”

  1. Kathryn's Dad says:

    For 2d, a PINNACE is a small boat, apparently, so adding L gives the solution.

  2. Eileen says:

    Thanks, Andrew.

    Yes, you were right about the nautical reference – I knew PINNACE from crosswords [probably a Rufus!]

    20dn: the sacristy is also where the vestments are kept. I think it could be PI ‘in vestments’.

  3. Eileen says:

    Sorry, I confused myself there [so used to seeing PI = good!]. I meant that the sacristy is a room for the good [clergy] in vestments! :-)

  4. Michael says:

    Re 20d; Worth noticing,I think, “good in vestments”

  5. liz says:

    Thanks, Andrew. I found this a little harder for a Rufus too. Didn’t know KIP in the leather sense — originally put NAP but changed it when I got 16ac. I had a vague memory of PINNACE, probably, as Eileen says, from another Rufus puzzle. I thought 8ac was quite neat.

  6. Eileen says:

    liz, s[NAP]!

    My favourite [apart from 20dn – are you saying the same as me, Michael?] was 29ac. And I thought 22ac was good, too. [Paul had ‘breakfast time’ last week.]

  7. Mr Beaver says:

    Andrew – I agree 9a is Quick crossword material, also 3d.
    Generally what one expects from Rufus (take that how you will :)), though I admit 8a, 30a and particularly 23d were good ‘uns

  8. Bryan says:

    Many thanks, Andrew

    I considered this very enjoyable and I have no complaints about either Rufus or this Monday puzzle being ‘too easy’.

  9. Eileen says:

    I’m sorry to keep going on about 20dn but I realise now that it’s more straightforward than I suggested.

    ‘Investments’ [archaic] means ‘clothes’ and, also, ‘investment’ means the act of enrobing, which is done in the sacristy, so take your pick – a good clue whichever way you take it!

  10. Mitch says:

    The word ‘vestments’ still in common use today. Generic term for albs, cottas, surplices etc. The vestments are kept in the sacristy.

    Don’t like 5d – “to clinch something”, “in a clinch” is not really a dd

  11. Eileen says:

    Yes, Mitch – it’s ‘INvestments’ that’s archaic.

  12. Rishi says:

    Where did I first come across PINNACE?

    Not in any Rufus crossword.

    It was Wordsworth poetry. In The Prelude:

    She was an elfin Pinnace; lustily
    I dipp’d my oars into the silent Lake,
    And as I rose upon the stroke, my Boat
    Went heaving through the water, like a Swan,

    To confess, I am not quoting from memory but I tracked it on the Internet after remembering distinctly where I had met the word first.

  13. Emrys says:

    I remember being discovering pinnace at about the age of 8.
    Chapter 14 of Swiss Family Robinson is entitled “The Pinnace and the Petard”. And I’m still confused by “petard”.

  14. Rishi says:

    “petard” is an explosive device, I think. Shakespeare has “hoist with his own petard”, not exactly meaning ‘thrown up by one’s own explosive device going off’ but caught in one’s own trap.

  15. Phil says:

    Can someone explain 30 across? I get rows = vendeattas and vend is sell and ettas is an anagram of state but houses?

    I agree that some of the definitions were barely cryptic: Joan of Arc, squeal or ogle? I thought six down could have been packet and possibly parcel?

  16. jvh says:


    Montague and Capulet were “two houses, both alike in dignity” who had a vendetta.

  17. BrendanPG says:

    My first thought with “vendetta” was also of two families/houses, but could it also work as “of houses to sell” meaning “vend = sell” in estate agent jargon?

  18. Mitch says:

    Oops. Sorry, Eileen. That’ll teach me to read all posts carefully !

    But I still don’t like 5d

  19. Eileen says:

    That’s OK, Mitch – I was beginning to wish that I hadn’t started that whole thing! :-)

    Re 5dn: Chambers gives ‘clinch’ as a noun in both senses, so I reckon it’s just about OK, if you think of it as ‘with’, rather than ‘in’ a clinch. [Interestingly, I discovered that it also means ‘a pun’!]

  20. Brian Harris says:

    Thin fare today. Normally, we don’t mind Rufus because he doesn’t detain us for more than 5 mins… but spent a good thirty mins today struggling with quite a few of these. And not in a good way.

  21. muck says:

    I agree with various comments: not one of Rufus’s best
    But the essential cricket and nautical clues were there

  22. Tom_I says:

    I don’t see any problem with 5d. To clinch (e.g. a deal) is to settle matters, and a clinch (or to clinch) is not how boxers settle matters. A clinch is a defensive move to restrain the opponent and generate a pause in the action. It settles nothing, in the sense of who is going to win, and the combatants will normally be instructed to break the clinch by the referee, and continue the fight.

  23. John says:

    There’s nothing “fond” about OGLE as I understand it.

  24. Mitch says:


    I know what you mean but, you it is the terminology I object to.

    Yes, in bargaining, you would say “you clinch a deal” but in boxing you would say boxers “go into a clinch”. Not a correct dd.

    Think I’d better just get my coat.

  25. Mike P says:

    21 d threw me – after trying all sorts of combinations of anagrams for “version” I managed to convince myself that the answer was “genesis” thinking that Revised Version (with Caps) must refer to the Bible. Oh well!

  26. Sylvia says:

    I got ‘knocks’ for 12a, not being conversant with ‘snicks’ in cricket?

  27. Chunter says:

    Sylvia, Don’t worry, as ‘snick’ is being edged out by ‘edge’, at least for commentators on TV and radio. However there’s a gadget called the Snickometer, or Snicko, that displays the sound made as the ball passes the bat.

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