Fifteensquared

Never knowingly undersolved.

AZED No. 1,961: No nuts at Christmas

Posted by The Trafites on January 3rd, 2010

The Trafites.

Nick:  My first blog on AZED and luckily it was a (fairly!) straight forward plod after the herculean ‘Christmas Parcels’ competition (and what a word to clue to boot!).  Some nice words this week (as usual) and also nice to learn some real meanings of words that get lost in modern day parlance.

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Superscript numbers¹²³ refer to headwords listed in Chambers (2008).

Legend to solution comments:
*  =  anagram.
<  =  word(s) reversed.
d.d. = double definition.
c.d.d. = cryptic double definition.

Across
1. CHRESTOMATHIC (THAT’S MORE)* in CHIC
11. OOMPH (HP + MOO)<  ; ‘that’s it’ = sex appeal = oomph.
I spent ages trying to parse the word play of this clue as 00 MPH.
13. COMMO COMMO(n) ; Trot(skyist/skyite) = communist – Aust. slang.
14. PLOT² P(i)LOT
15. OTTOMAN OTT + (the Sultanate of) OMAN
16. REMEDIAL (c)REME + DIAL
18. TEMPORISER (SPIROMETER)*
Nice anagram.
19. LATEST LA + TEST
22. WRASSE WASSER with the tail ‘R’ moved to the second position.
I am still not sure ‘German river’ could mean wasser, as I could only find wasser = water. (See comments below about this clue).
24. ANTIMATTER A NATTER around TIM ; ayurveda = Traditional Indian Medicine.
29. LORDLIKE (KILLED)* around OR ; Ref. Lord Lucan.
A sort of &LIT. – maybe AZED knows more than the police?
30. TIBETAN (BITTEN)* around A
A Tibetan terrier is not a terrier, hence the strange definition of ‘misnamed terrier’.
31. PLIM LIMP with the ‘P’ moved to the front.
32. ANILE ANI + LE
33. MANET d.d. Apart from the artist, manet is a direction for an actor/actress to remain on stage.
34. MAGISTRATURES MATURES around (A GIST + R)
Down
1. CAPROLACTAM (CAROL)* inbetween CAP and TAM
2. HOLEY HO + LEY
3. ROOMETTE (TOME)* in ROTE³
4. SPADES c.d.d. suit = ♠; spade³ = spado – a castrated person; the word ‘alter¹(ed)’ once meant to castrate(d).
The ‘we’ in this clue indicates the plural is required, hence spados = spades.
This was the last clue I solved, even though with the checking letters and the obvious definition it
had to be SPADES; it took me over 4 hours and lots of beer to parse the clue correctly.
The full clue: ‘Suit we got altered years ago
A tour de force from AZED.
5. THAIM hidden: perTH AIMless
Sneaky – with Perth in there the solver could expect a Scottish or Australian ref.
6. MATLOW MAT + LOW
Being from Pompey, and as my Father was a matlow, this came quickly.
The ‘seaman’ part was a nice detraction though, leading solvers to expect an AB ~TAR et al
in there somewhere.
7. ACTOR AC + TOR
8. TOOT² T + (TOO)<
9. IMAGES IS around MAGE
A single wise king is a magus -> mage, hence the three (as plural) are magi.
10. CONTRETEMPS (T + ENTER)* in COMPS
‘comps’ = ‘monthly AZ(ed) affairs’ – very nice.
12. SOAPSTONE SOAPS + TONE
17. ASSAILER (A LASS IRE)*
Very loose definition I thought.
20. ANGINA (p)ANG + IN + A
There you go – I learnt something new with what this word really meant.
21. TALANT T + A + (p)LANT ALAN T(itchmarsh)
A pun sort of clue Ref. Monty Don, TV gardener.
Monty D(on) implies what he does is (p)LANT.
See comment #2 – I parsed this clue totally wrong, but arrived at the correct solution :)
‘single’ = a hawk’s talon, of which TALANT is Spensers form.
23. RED HAT (HATRED)*
So simple for an AZED clue I did not go for this at first.
25. MITES hidden:  herMIT ESurient
26. TREMA T + REMA(in)
27. SKITE S + KIT + E
Another Aust. word, hence ‘Ponting’, Australian cricketer, as the indicator.
Superior is almost superfluous (KIT higher up than E), but was needed/added to make
the clue surface reading parse nicely I feel.
28. DELI DELI(berate)
Another ‘so obvious’ type clue that makes it quite difficult.
I spent ages messing about with ‘delicate’, trying to remove the ‘cate’ part.

9 Responses to “AZED No. 1,961: No nuts at Christmas”

  1. Tom_I says:

    Thanks for the blog, Nick.

    In 22a, isn’t the wordplay that “wasser” is “what’s in a German river”, not that it means a river in German?

  2. Jerb says:

    Thanks for this.

    I thought the counterpart to Monty D(on) in 21d was ALAN T(itchmarsh), though I completely failed to understand the definition.

    Same thoughts as Tom_I on “wasser”.

    If someone could explain the definition of TOOT, I’d be happy!

  3. Tom_I says:

    Chambers: toot vi to pry, peer, peep about (Spenser).

  4. The Trafites says:

    Jerb, 8dn ‘TOOT’ see Chambers under toot[2] – it is a Spenser word meaning ‘to peer’.
    Peer, old-fashioned…’.

    As to ‘wasser’ – I see now – ‘water’[wasser] is in a German river with the tail moved… to make the fish which could also be in a German river. Ummm… a bit indirect I feel, but fair I suppose :)

    Nick

  5. The Trafites says:

    Sorry, last comment re TOOT was meant for Tom_I.
    Nick

  6. Tom_I says:

    I took the definition in 22 to just be “bony fish”, the rest of the clue being subsidiary indication. Isn’t wrasse a sea fish, rather than fresh water?

  7. The Trafites says:

    Jerb, comment #2 – Sorry I missed this, and have updated the blog to reflect the correct parsing of 21dn ‘TALANT’.

    Nick :)

  8. Jerb says:

    Thanks, Tom and Nick – I was predictably misdirected by the sense of “peer”. And being in an airport at the time and not having Chambers, I couldn’t find that definition of “single” in 21d anywhere, so it was a wild guess (and not the only wild guess!)

  9. liz says:

    Thanks, Nick. I enjoyed this and got it all out, except for the ‘I’ in ANILE. Bit of a confidence booster after making no headway at all with the Parcels puzzle!

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