Fifteensquared

Never knowingly undersolved.

Independent 7,348 by Dac

Posted by Simon Harris on May 5th, 2010

Simon Harris.

The usual quality Wednesday puzzle from Dac, if a little tougher than some weeks. I failed at 1ac, at least, though everything else fell into place steadily enough.

*=anag, []=dropped, <=reversed, hom=homophone, cd=cryptic definition, dd=double definition.

Across
1 TRAJAN – RAJA in TN.
4 CLUBBING – dd.
9 RHINO – IN in RHO.
10 SEMESTERS – SEEMS* + TERS[e].
11 WATERLOGS – (TWO LARGE)* + S[hocking].
12 ERATO – (OT ARE)<.
13 UNDERSTANDING – UNDER STANDING.
17 SAT ON THE FENCE – (A TEN STONE CHEF)*.
19 OFFIE – (O + FIFE)*. A familiar term for the off-licence.
21 BROADBAND – cd + def.
23 FRUITCAKE – dd. Dundee is world-renowned for its fruitcakes.
24 STAKE – dd.
25 BEARDIES – BEAR DIES. The familiar name of the Bearded Collie, a large, hairy and affectionate creature, if a little smelly at times.
26 POTENT – TEN in POT.
Down
1 THROW OUT – dd.
2 ARISTIDES – [monet]ARIST I DES[pised].
3 AMOUR – A + MOUR[n].
5 LE MISANTHROPE – (MOLIERE’S PATH + N)*.
6 BAS RELIEF – (BRIEF SALE)*.
7 IRENA – [lancash]IRE NA[turally].
8 GASCON – GAS + CO + N.
10 SHOOTING BRAKE – hom. of “shooting break”. The entry is an old term for an estate car, preserved in the US.
14 RETREATED – dd.
15 GIN PALACE – GI + PLAN* + ACE.
16 DEAD HEAT – DEAD + (E[legant] in HAT).
18 CONFAB – (ON F[are]) in CAB.
20 FAUNA – (A in FUN) + A.
22 DISCO – (I’S + C) in DO.

11 Responses to “Independent 7,348 by Dac”

  1. nmsindy says:

    Yes, excellent puzzle and blog, top half quite easy, but then became tougher with last two entries STAKE and DEAD HEAT taking quite a while. Favourite clue: GIN PALACE. Had heard of that but not OFFIE for which there was a friendly anagram so a new word learnt.

  2. Kathryn's Dad says:

    Always look forward to Dac on Wednesdays, and enjoyed this one as usual. Despite the obvious anagram, couldn’t get OFFIE till last (and I did know what it meant). BROADBAND was cheeky and LE MISANTHROPE was clever.

    Thanks for blogging, Simon. You might want to insert ‘edible’ in your explanation of 23ac to avoid upsetting our readers north of the border … or maybe you’re trying to tell them something?

  3. Richard says:

    “Broadband” certainly raised a smile.

  4. walruss says:

    Very nice indeed. Good, but not hard.

  5. Derrick Knight says:

    Superb elegant, apparently effortless, clueing

  6. flashling says:

    1ac got me, convinced myself it was (tsar)a? and could not get past that, also being a simple minded soul, I don’t really get the dead bit in dead heat. chuckled at broadband though.

  7. nmsindy says:

    I think the ‘dead’ = ‘really’ in DEAD HEAT would come from such as ‘he’s dead cute’ ie ‘he’s really cute’. It was hard tho and my last answer.

  8. scarpia says:

    Great puzzle with some cunning clueing.Particularly liked 11 and 21 across and 5 down. Using the playwright’s name in the anagram is the sort of thing that appeals to me!
    Got 25 across without really understanding it,didn’t know ‘beardies’ were dogs – thank you Simon.

  9. Merlyn says:

    I had “bearding” (Bear ding[o]) for 25, which gave me “shooting brain” for 10d, and I couldn’t work out what the car referred to. I liked the Moliere reference too.

    I didn’t like 3d – to count “a” as a common abbreviation of affair is questionable, and how do you get mourn from the rest of it? (I did get the answer from love, and A-O-R.)

  10. NealH says:

    I can’t remember the clue, but I think the a was just an indefinite article. The mour[n] was from keen, which can mean to lament. I must confess that I didn’t follow it either until I read the blog – I’d forgotten that keen could take that meaning.

  11. Simon Harris says:

    I’ll similarly admit that that one took some working out for me on blogging, even though I was fairly convinced of the entry.

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