Never knowingly undersolved.

Financial Times 13,425 / Gozo

Posted by Gaufrid on June 30th, 2010


The Wednesday puzzle is usually one towards the more difficult end of the FT spectrum but not today (at least for me).

A sartorial theme for the across answers which are all items that can be worn. There was some misdirection in 15ac, and the ‘Highland festival’ in 1dn is perhaps a little obscure (I certainly hadn’t come across it before), but apart from that the anagrams, charades etc were rather obvious and didn’t provide much mental exercise.

On reflection however, whilst reviewing this post, ‘amice’ (11ac), ‘maniple’ (21ac) and perhaps ‘espadrille’ (23ac) might have been unfamiliar to those who hadn’t come across these words in previous puzzles. 11ac and 23ac could be readily obtained from the charade and anagram respectively but the dd for ‘maniple’ is possibly not all that well known.

1 MITTEN  MIT (with German) TEN (number)
4 HOT PANTS  HOT (recently stolen) PANTS (rubbish)
11 AMICE  AMI (Nancy’s friend) CE (church) – Nancy being a town in France – a strip of fine linen, worn formerly on the head, now on the shoulders, by a priest at mass. Alternatively, a cloak or wrap.
12 CAPE  dd
13 STRING VEST  STRING (train) VEST[a] (short match)
15 MAE WEST  M (male) EWE (sheep) in A ST (a road) – good misdirection because until the down answers had been entered it was easy to look for a garment containing ‘ram’ or ‘tup’.
16 GLOVES  d&cd – a reference to ‘the gloves are off’ when an argument or fight starts to get serious.
19 T-SHIRT  *(THIS) RT (right)
21 MANIPLE  dd – a company of foot soldiers in the Roman army  and (in the Western Christian Church) a clerical vestment used during the sacrament.
23 ESPADRILLE  *(DISPEL REAL) – a rope-soled shoe
25 SOCK  CO’S (company’s) reversed K (king)
27 PARKA  PARK (leave the car) A
28 BALACLAVA  BALA ((Welsh lake) C (caught) LAVA (material)
29 GALOSHES  GAL (lass) *(SHOES)
30 BERETS  *(B[eech] TREES)

1 MODICUMS  MOD (Highland festival) *(MUSIC)
2 TONE POEMS  TONE (general character) POE (novelist) MS (manuscripts)
3 EXAM  EX (once) AM (before noon)
5 OUSTING  [j]OUSTING – ‘ejecting’ is doing double duty as both the definition and the removal indicator.
7 NOISE  N (Norway) OISE (river)
9 SEXTET  SE (Home Counties) *(TEXT)
18 WEEKDAYS  homophone of ‘weak daze’ (feeble bewilderment)
20 THIMBLE  HIM (that fellow) in *(BELT)
22 SEA-PIG  *(ESPI[on]AG[e])
24 PERIL  PER (through) IL (state)
26 ACRE  hidden in ‘cognAC REjected’

2 Responses to “Financial Times 13,425 / Gozo”

  1. smiffy says:

    Thanks Gaufrid.

    I was also far from being whelmed by this puzzle. Too many minor irritants along the way for my liking. In particular, 16A (don’t the metaphorical “gloves come off” once a spat starts to escalate – rather than when it starts?) and 22D (a ludicrously ugly surface, and technically flawed too; giving no indication that the subtraction needs to be disjointed).

    I’ll confess to not being familiar with MANIPLE, but managed to guess correctly.

  2. Scarpia says:

    Thanks Gaufrid.
    As you say, fairly easy puzzle today,even though some of the clue components were unfamiliar e.g. mod and bala.Guessed both answers and had to look up the components to verify – Brownie points to Gozo for that!
    Top clue,by a long way,15 across.

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