Never knowingly undersolved.

Guardian 25,020 – Audreus

Posted by Andrew on May 26th, 2010


There were no Audreus puzzles for over a year, but now we’ve had two from her in fairly quick succession (the last was on 9th April). On past form it’s a fairly safe prediction that Thursday’s setter will be Shed, who is Audreus’s son. This one was very straightforward but enjoyable in a gentle way.

9. EPOCH H+COPE reversed
10. SPOT Double definition
12. BEAUTY EAU + T with BY “without”, i.e. outside
15. WELCOME L (student) + C[lubs] + MO< in WEE
22. CHERUB Hidden in “headaCHE RUBbish”
24. EVEN NEVE[R] reversed
25. NOTED NO TED[dy bear]
26. MOTORING MOT + OR + IN + G. OR (Other Ranks) for “soldiers” or “men” has been criticised here by some recently as having been overused.
2. PEST E in PST. Chambers gives “pst” as an alternative to “psst” as “a sound to attract attention”, but not as a verb, which is how the wordplay seems to be using it here.
3. MARSHY S H in MARY (as in the nursery rhyme “Mary, Mary, Quite Contrary”).
4. REMOUNT EMO in RUNT (smallest in a litter)
5. NEWLY-WED A rather obvious cryptic definition
6. CONFIDANTE CON (study – another old crossword cliché) + IF< + DANTE. "If" is the well-known Kipling poem.
13. UNCTUOSITY (COUNTY SUIT)*. Not a word I think I’ve ever come across, but an obvious derivative of “unctuous”.
18. SAUTERNE (TUES EARN)*. I think the dessert wine is more usually spelt “Sauternes” (as is the part of France that gives it its name) but Chambers gives this alternative spelling.
21. LEARNT [King] LEAR + NT (= New Testament = books).
22. CRAFTY RAF (one of the armed services) replacing I in CITY.
24. EURO First letters of End Up Running Off,

26 Responses to “Guardian 25,020 – Audreus”

  1. Bill Taylor says:

    Thanks for a very fast blog, Andrew! No real problems with this, though I’m glad you explained “emo” in 4d. I thought a couple of clues were iffy — 2d, 18d and 24, for instance — and 20a was very weak: FLOUNDER for “lose one’s cool” is a stretch. And why is 5d hyphenated? Surely NEWLYWED is one word.

    Straightforward and gentle, certainly. But not terribly enjoyable, alas. If it is Shed tomorrow, let’s hope for something a little more fiendish from the younger generation…

  2. Bryan says:

    Many thanks, Andrew, this was another Crypto Quickie except for 4d: I’ve never heard of EMO or any of its adherents and I doubt if I ever will again.

    I sincerely trust that Shed will now advise his mum of my aversion to obscure words.

  3. Eileen says:

    Many thanks, Andrew.

    As you say, nothing too taxing but some nice touches. I liked ‘aspiring to be’ as an anagram indicator and SHOPLIFTER as ‘self-helper’ in 11ac.

    Collins, too, gives PST as an alternative but, as you say, the grammar isn’t right.

    [I do hope you haven’t put the jinx on my tomorrow’s blog by mentioning it: my heart leapt when I saw Audreus’ name on today’s puzzle! :-)]

  4. Ian says:

    Thanks Andrew.

    A curate’s egg. Some good, notably ‘coverage’ and ‘Unctuosity’ for the use of slick, others clunky, especially ‘Newly Wed’ for the reason Bill points out.


  5. Eileen says:

    Re NEWLY-WED: ‘you pays your money …’. Chambers has it hyphenated, Collins as one word. [I agree with Andrew that it’s rather obvious, though.]

  6. tupu says:

    Thanks Andrew. Doable enough and some good moments. 3d had me puzzled for a time – kept trying to think of a girl beginning with Y and reversed! 13d was a less obvious anagram than many. Like others, enjoyed ‘shoplifter’.

  7. Mick H says:

    “Self=helper” for shoplifter reminds me of a sign in a shop in East Street market, near the Elephant and Castle, that used to read: “God helps those that help themselves, but God help anyone caught helping themselves in here!”
    I must have been having a slow morning, didn’t find this so straightforward, and I thought ‘enough to afford’ and ‘aspiring to be’ were a bit of a stretch as anagram indicators. Enjoyable though.

  8. Kathyrn's Dad says:

    A mixture of straightforward and several tricky ones, I found. NOTED was funny and CHERUB was well hidden. I agree with Bill that flounder and lose one’s cool aren’t really synonymous; personally I’d say the same about crafty and subtle. Is ‘enough’ meant to be the anagrind in 18dn?

    I’ve started being picky, so I’ll finish. Cove doesn’t (according to Collins)have any overtones of ‘old’, simply defining a man or a chap. However, since it was widely used in the ‘Dear Bill’ letters in Private Eye which was correspondence between two old codgers, perhaps we’ll forgive Audreus that one.

    Thanks for blogging, Andrew. 6/10 (for the puzzle, not the blog).

  9. liz says:

    Thanks, Andrew. Unpicking the anagram at 13dn caused me the most trouble. I liked 11ac and 15ac and also thought that 22ac was a good hidden. Never heard of EMO…

    Think Bryan’s coinage of Cryptic Quickie very appropriate for clues like 10ac and 24ac!

  10. FumbleFingers says:

    Thanks Andrew.

    I don’t have a problem with ‘enough to afford’ and ‘aspiring to be’ as anagram indicators, but I really think PST for “to attract attention” is more than a bit OTT. On the other hand, maybe I’m just miffed because I didn’t get that one.

    Kathyrn’s Dad @8 – I think “old” goes with “cove” because it’s seriously old-fashioned slang. I recall thinking of it as a somewhat tongue-in-cheek archaism back in the Dear Bill letters, and for us even to remember them shows we’re no spring chickens!

  11. Kathyrn's Dad says:

    You might think that, FumbleFingers; I couldn’t possibly comment …

  12. FumbleFingers says:

    I won’t deny I have one toe in the grave, but I did feel pretty ‘au courant’ for recognising EMO as a music style.

  13. mike04 says:

    Dear Audreus
    My home isn’t called a lake.
    Love from The Monster x

  14. Bill Taylor says:

    Dear Monster
    Nevertheless, that’s what it is.
    Love from The Dictionary x

  15. mike04 says:

    Dear Bill
    Nice one! x

  16. Kathryn's Dad says:

    That’s enough Dear Bill letters for today …

  17. Daniel Miller says:

    Dear Bill..


    That’s what you get at some ‘Bread and Water’ Restaurants.. (9 letters) .. (a dear bill)

  18. Daniel Miller says:

    oops I meant at the ‘Bread and Water’ Restaurant :)

  19. Bill Taylor says:

    I thought at first Daniel @17 was offering a homophone for intoxicated. I wondered how this equated with a Bread and Water restaurant….

    Honi soit qui mal y pense (as we coves would say.)

  20. D&G says:

    A small diversion for the end of the day from a setter new to us. Not particularly inspiring, just like the ‘newly weds’ or the condems (as we like to call them). Hee hee!

  21. FumbleFingers says:

    D&G @20
    Now, now… admittedly us old coves & dipsoliguaphiles have been a bit self-indulgent lately, but never forget the golden rule. Minimal off-topic, and definitley nothing overtly political!

    Actually that’s only the silver rule (golden is nothing religious). Not that it’s my place to make the rules -I just try to comply & look to see where they can be bent.

    Re-centralising, I’d just like to pledge my vote to whoever introduces a private member’s bill making it illegal to resolve OR in xword clues from ‘men’, ‘soldiers’, etc. It really grinds my gears. A crap convention with no redeeming features to justify [perpetuation | promulgation] (choose one according to your particular sociopolitical taste).

  22. FumbleFingers says:

    (and definitely no loose spelling)

  23. Davy says:

    Thanks Andrew,

    Just decided to comment now that the show is over. I enjoyed this puzzle and consider it a great improvemnet on both Rufus and Gordius, earlier this week. There were lots of well-crafted clues and I didn’t find it particularly easy. I missed out on PEST, CHERUB (no idea how I didn’t see that one) and CRAFTY (which I should have got although as has been said, it’s not a great synonym for subtle).
    Thanks to Audreus for keeping me entertained for an hour or so.

  24. mhl says:

    A fun crossword, which we didn’t have much trouble with.

    EMO is interesting in musical terms, since I’m sure that it’s shifted in meaning substantially – in the 90s I understood it to mean a particular kind of angsty punk rock (the more angsty examples of these known as “screamo”), but now it seems to be used much to cover a different, more mainstream, type of band. And now it seems that someone can be “an emo” in the same way that you might be be a goth…

    Oh well, on to Shed now…

  25. mhl says:

    Sorry, I meant to say “Thanks for the excellent post, Andrew” as well :)

  26. Huw Powell says:

    When I hit the “Emo” clue I thought, “this is gonna raise some ire”, it’s very trivial.

    I thought the explanation of “MOTORING” made no sense.

    Oh well, a puzzle I gave up one with seven clues clueless. Still fun to be able to come here and see what I missed.

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