Never knowingly undersolved.


Posted by John on July 2nd, 2010


Rather a strong crossword from Phi today. Everything seems to be soundly and well clued, and the one or two that as usual I can’t understand will I’m sure be perfectly well explained (actually by the end of doing the blog I’d got most of them, but there are still one or two little things I’m not sure about).  As for a Nina, I’m unable to see anything but knowing Phi you’d expect something.

5 F LOR AL{l}
9 IN ALL FAIRNESS — 2 defs
10 LEAN TO{p}
15 A G END A
18 ULTERIOR — (riot rule)* — I suppose ulterior just about, in some sense, = hidden — an ulterior motive is a hidden motive
21 BIG AMO US — amo is expression of love from Latin
22 MODIFY — (Fido)rev. in My
24 SIGNATURE TUNE — (genius)* around (nature t)
25 ZY DECO{rate} — I think (although I had to cheat on this, never having heard the word), z and y are the characters for an unknown
26 consignmenT WENT Yesterday — and the reference is to 20dn
3 D RAIN — nicely misleading because you think of empty day as dy
4 WE L COME{t}
5 FOREPAW — which is I suppose an equivalent of hand, but where the bridge team comes in I can’t see
6 OPERAGOER — o p (agree or)*
7 A {m}USTER E{ast} — I think it’s muster
8 MADAME TUSSAUD — (at a sad museum)* d
13 MONTAIGNE — (enigma not)* — how nice of Phi not to give us football or rock songs but this chap
16 GAINS A {lad}Y
17 A V O C(AD)O
23 DE{{ba}d}UCE

15 Responses to “Independent7398/Phi”

  1. IanN14 says:

    Thanks John.
    5d. FOR (supporting) + PA (father) in E & W (bridge partners).
    No nina that I could spot, either.

  2. Kathryn's Dad says:

    Thanks, John, needed your blog today to understand AUSTERE and GAINSAY. Faultless as always from Phi. For me there wasn’t one outstanding clue (although I liked IN ALL FAIRNESS), but everything was well put together and with perseverance this solver at least was able to arrive at the solution enjoyably.

    I was able to put in 25ac on my first run through, having heard of a band called R Cajun and the Zydeco Brothers. If I knew how to, I’d put a link to them, but if anyone’s that interested you can no doubt Google it.

  3. Ali says:

    I found yesterday’s Nimrod slightly easier – which is a rarity – but this was great stuff as ever from Phi.

    NOT happy with the move back to the right hand side of the page for the paper version…!

  4. walruss says:

    ‘There wasn’t one outstanding clue’. I’m sure that wasn’t meant to be pejorative, KD!! Actually, I agree in the sense that nothing stands out much, but it was all clued fairly. More excitement in the tennis this afternoon, I expect.

  5. Kathryn's Dad says:

    Sorry, walruss, you’re right – I didn’t express myself very well there! I’m sure you knew what I intended. As for the tennis, I got my fix from the Grauniad puzzle this morning, which has a SW19 theme.

  6. RayFolwell says:

    I found this fairly tough but enjoyable. Thanks for the explanation of 26A which I solved before getting 20D !

    Do any (UK) English dictionaries have OPERAGOER as one word ? It’s not in Chambers and an on-line search only finds it in American dictionaries.

  7. Kathryn's Dad says:

    Ray, I have Collins and it’s not in that either, but it’s probably late enough in the day now to say that in the Grauniad today the same word was clued, but enumerated as OPERA-GOER. I personally would use that latter construction, but I’m a fan of hyphens where appropriate. However, I was reading somewhere recently that dictionaries are starting to favour hyphenless words where the meaning isn’t compromised, which would happen for example with A LIGHT-BLUE DRESS and A LIGHT BLUE DRESS. Both the Indy and Grauniad style guides (and their crossword editors) will no doubt have something to say on the matter too. I suspect it’s a bit of a ‘you say tomayto, I say tomato’ discussion.

  8. xanthomam says:

    A PANGRAM???

  9. IanN14 says:

    Sorry, xanthomam,
    But no, (despite the appearance of “alphabet”).
    No J, K or Q.

  10. Simon Harris says:

    Can’t see a J in there myself, xanthomam.

    Quality puzzle, I thought BIGAMOUS was particularly nice, with the “Latin American” trickery and the remarkably smooth surface.

  11. nmsindy says:

    Thanks for the blog, John. Excellent puzzle from Phi, my favourite was ALPHABET – I too liked the ‘Latin American’ misdirection in BIGAMOUS.

  12. Shirley says:

    Kathryn’s dad – 9A in the Guardian today has opera goer hyphenated

  13. IanHH says:

    OPERA-GOER is an answer in today’s Guardian crossword. Are Crucible and Phi the same person?

  14. flashling says:

    Must have have been hard day at work, got off to a good start then stuck and eventually gave up, not seeing madame tussaud probably broke my attempt. And I was doing so well this week too. Damn! Oh well, tomorrow’s another day.

  15. Scarpia says:

    Thanks John.
    The usual excellent puzzle from Phi.My only quibble being opera-goer,which I(like Kathryn’s Dad and RayFolwell) think should be hyphenated.Not quite as bad as miniseries,which you sometimes see on American D.V.D,s – what on earth is a minisery? :)
    Top clue for me was 21 across – brilliant!

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