Fifteensquared

Never knowingly undersolved.

Enigmatic Variations 903: Crews by Piccadilly

Posted by Dave Hennings on March 6th, 2010

Dave Hennings.

Piccadilly has set puzzles for all the series, although the last five years has seen him (Mick Willey) setting for Enigmatic Variations. He is also that rare beast, someone who sets both word and numerical puzzles.

In Crews, the diagram has clue numbers but no bars, and we are told that some clues overlap. The subsidiary indications in thirteen clues lead to an extra letter not entered in the diagram, and they can be arranged to form the name of an author. Remaining clues are entered in jumbled form. I know some solvers don’t like jumbles, but I just get on with it.

I seem to have the feeling that Piccadilly is a fairly tough setter, but luckily this puzzle is on the easy side since there is a lot of cold solving. There are a number of straightforward anagrams, like ALLOTMENT, MARZIPAN, DEBT COLLECTOR and PERFORATED, plus at least one that was a real pig … OSWALDTWISTLE, which I’d come across sometime ago in another puzzle, but it didn’t spring to mind this week.

Everything went smoothly, albeit somewhat slowly, and we are left with the extra letters ONAAMHURRSETR for the author: the first name, ARTHUR, was an easy spot, and not long after, RANSOME appears. And we have a 3×11 rectangle in columns 2,3 and 4 giving SWALLOWS: JOHN, SUSAN, TITTY, ROGER WALKER, and a 5×5 rectangle (OK, it happens to be a square) in columns 9-13 giving AMAZONS: NANCY, PEGGY BLACKETT. These need highlighting.

Solving time: about 2½ hours, not surprising given all the jumbling required.

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

ACROSS
1 O FLORAL DANCE furry: (END OF A COLLAR)*; a ‘furry’ is the floral dance held in Helston, Cornwall on 8 May … how specific can you get?!
12 N OSWALDTWISTLE Northern town: (TWIN WAS LOST LED)*
16 A ALLOTMENT grow vegetables on this: (ME NOT (A)T ALL)*; I’m not thrilled with the superfluous punctuation in this clue, especially between ‘ground’, the anagram indicator, and the words to anagram
17 ARTEL
entered as
TERAL
workers’ guild: in stART ELectrical
18 JAWS
AWSJ
lectures: J (jack) + WAS*
19 MARZIPAN
NIRPAMAZ
ingredient used by confectioners: MAR (injure) ZIP (fly) + AN
20 A FOHN alpine wind: regularly in FrOm AtHeNs
21 BAND
NADB
pop group: sounds like BANNED (prohibited)
22 NUNS
UNSN
sisters: NUS (students’ organisation) enrolling N (first of Nine)
23 SUES
ESUS
entreats: SUE (girl) + S (society)
24 M SUSPECT doubt: (MCS SET-UP)*
25 H PEG degree: first letters of Professor Helped Edward Get
27 TARN
RANT
lake: TAR (sailor) + N (northern)
28 U ANTHOLOGY flower-gathering: (UNHOLY GOAT)
33 R RITT score (Scotland): R (runs) + odd letters of IrRiTaTe
34 TICKETTYBOO
RITTYOOBCKE
fine: TICKET (list of candidates) + (TO BOY)*
37 R PYROTECHNICS fit of temper: (CHORES IN CRYPT)*
40 DO-GOODER
OGERDDOO
self-righteous reformer: DOG (follow) O (old) ODER (German river)
41 LOWER
OWLER
put down: BLOWER (telephone) – B (bishop
42 WALTER
TWALRE
man: W (wife) + ALTER (castrate, old word)
43 STABILE
LBTSIAE
not moving: I (one) in STABLE (set of horses)
44 HANDKERCHIEFS
DKERISENAHCHF
noserags: HANKER (yearning) containing D (last bit of colD) CHIEF (head) + S (beginning to Sneeze)
45 S EASY ON THE EYE attractive: (SEE ONE THEY SAY)*
DOWN
2 SALLOWS
entered as
LSLWOSA
trees: ALL (everyone) eaten by SOWS (pigs)
3 HOWLS
OWLSH
mournful crires: H (hospital) + OWLS (birds)
4 TROJANS
RAOJNST
hard workers: TRONS (market places) accepting JA (Job Applications, initially)
5 MIDDLE
LDMIDE
central: in (fiELD DIMming)<
6 DEBT COLLECTOR one acting for creditors: DEB (smart young girl) + T (time) + COLLECT (accumulate) + OR (gold)
7 PAWN
AWNP
gallery: PAW (obscene, old word) + N (exhibitioN’s last)
8 CONCATENATING
NITANCGCNOTAE
joining together: (GET INTO CAN-CAN)*
9 PARENT
ETRANP
one having children: [PARTNER – R (right)]*
10 E PLAZA public square: in purPLE AZAleas
11 LEMON
MELON
fruit: M (first in Moscow) swallowed by LEON (Trotsky)
13 PLANT
LTNAP
young person: PLIANT (easily influenced) – I (independence)
14 MESSY
SEMSY
bungling: [EMBASSY – BA (graduate)]*
15 T ELONGATE extend: (A LEG TO NET)*
18 PERFORATED
AFERRPOTDE
pierced: (PART OF REED)
26 LATHEES
ELTSEAH
weapons: LA (American city, Los Angeles) + THESE*
29 THYROID
HYTDRIO
gland: I (iodine) in (DRY HOT)*
30 HOBNOB
OBHOBN
private talk: N (knight) in HOBO (tramp) B (baron)
31 WHISKEY
YKIWSHE
drink: W (drop of Water) + H (hot) + IS + KEY (essential)
32 BICYCLE
BECLICY
means of transport: [IMPECCABLY – MP & A (about)]*
35 ODENSE
OEDESN
port: (OSTEND – T)* + E (English)
36 R TEREFA what’s not kosher: in caTERER FAils
38 GAWKY
YGWKA
ungainly: [WAY GEEK – EE (Angus’s eye)]*
39 LORRY
ORLRY
wagon: L (fifty) + OR (men) + RY (railway)

3 Responses to “Enigmatic Variations 903: Crews by Piccadilly”

  1. Jake says:

    Thanks for putting this blog up.
    Even though I didn’t do this puzzle, I’m trying EV904 which looks fun and a bit less mind boggling than other special advanced cryptic crosswords.

    Can someone – if anyone reads this – tell me if I’m correct in thinking EV is a little less steep – due to it being the Daily Telegraph – than the other specials crosswords?

    And a good place to start for these type of puzzles?

  2. Dave Hennings says:

    Jake

    Thanks for the comment, and good luck with EV904 (French Polish by Samson). In my opinion, the EV series is the easiest of the three barred thematics, with the Inquisitor being marginally more difficult and the Listener even more so. Obviously some weeks will buck the trend.

    So to answer your question, I would say you are right to start with EV, especially in conjunction with blogs on this site, but don’t be surprised if you find some that are impossible for you!.

    Of course if you want to read other solvers experiences with other puzzles, read Inquisitor blogs here and Listener blogs at Listen With Others (which I help to run!!).

    Best wishes,
    Dave.

  3. Jake says:

    Cheers Dave.

    Jake.

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