Never knowingly undersolved.

Independent 7432/Dac

Posted by John on August 11th, 2010


The usual tightly-constructed crossword from Dac, with all the clues very simple once they’re got, but not always so easy beforehand.

1 BASTIA — asti in (AB)rev.
5 FACE MASK — f a c{op} (makes)*
9 GAL A — the fund-raising event meaning is only subsidiary, hence the question mark
10 COURT ORDER — 2 defs, one of them a bit fanciful: “Quiet please” is an order that is sometimes given on tennis courts
11 CONTUSED — (cut one’s)* d{octor}
13 VIRGO INTACTA — (1 craving a lot)* — a bit near the knuckle for Dac perhaps
17 LINE OF BATTLE — 2 defs — rank as on a chess board (a row), and Wilfred Owen wrote lines about battles — the term doesn’t seem to be in Chambers but it’s in the COD
19 COPE C K — and a copeck, one spelling of the old Russian coin that was one hundredth of a rouble and no longer has any significant value
21 S(AL{l})INGER
23 CO(M{adrid} PRADO)RE — I don’t see this one properly: OK a compradore is a foreign intermediary who handles trade, and the parsing is possibly as I’ve given it, but why ‘core’ is ‘employed by’ I’m not sure — or is it an attempt at an &lit., where ‘business’ is ‘co’ and ‘agent employed by’ is somehow ‘re’? — probably not
24 MEET — 2 defs, one of them as in ‘for it is meet so to do’
25 BE(V)ER AGE — ‘as time goes on’ means that time is added to what you have
26 ODDISH — (do)rev. dish — an oddish word
2 ANATOL{e} I A — referring to Anatole France
3 PresidenT CARTer — hidden reversed
4 ACCESSION — a “c{ouncil} session” — I think to get the double c you have to include ‘council’s first’ in the homophone, which is arguably a bit odd
5 FOUNDATIONS’ TONE — in the 60s there was a group called The Foundations, so their tone …
6 CIT{i}ES — once because i appears twice in cities
8 STEAMY — {poe}m in (Yeats)*
14 GILL ESPIE{d} — referring to Dizzy Gillespie
16 SLEEPERS — 2 defs
18 MOROSE — (Romeo’s)*
20 KnOwAlL‘s A — alternate letters
22 AmsterDAM ONce — another hidden reversed

16 Responses to “Independent 7432/Dac”

  1. Kathryn's Dad says:

    Thank you, John. This was harder than a normal Dac, imho, which is fair enough, and I needed some online help to finish it; but I just thought it lacked a bit of his usual elegance and was a bit clunky in places. Talking of places, for example, ‘cities’ (6dn) are certainly places, but then so are lots of other places. Anatole France and The Foundations? Not exactly mainstream definitions for a daily cryptic, if I may say so. And LINE OF BATTLE I still don’t really understand, apart from the fact that Wilfred Owen was a WWI poet.

    COMPRADORE seems to be M + PRADO in CORE (centre) but like you, I’m confused with the ‘employed’ bit.

  2. Kathryn's Dad says:

    Sorry, got cut off by the website having a hiccup. Wanted also to say that I can’t see how ‘new addition to library’ can clue ACCESSION.

    Dac is one of my favourite Indy setters (I love the rest of you in a special way too, worry not) but today was just a bit variable in quality. Probably just me.

  3. scchua says:

    Thank you John. Found this comparatively easy after yesterday’s.

    I thought:
    23A: The CO—RE refers to “the centre” in the wordplay. Thus “-MPRADO-” is in the centre/core.

    25A: “AGE” is used here as a verb, eg. as one ages.

    4D: “CESSION” is the homophone for “session”.

    My favourite was 5D: where “rock” refered both to the type of 60s sound as well as to the definition “stone”. But of course one needs to be of a certain generation to appreciate this one.

    Thank you Dac.

  4. scchua says:

    17A: “Military rank” refers to warships positioning themselves in a line as a tactic in naval battles.

  5. sidey says:

    ACCESSION # 2 a new item added to an existing collection of books, paintings, or artefacts [Oxford Dictionaries]

    I think the ‘employed’ is simply that the following bits are used to make the answer.

  6. Simon Harris says:

    Thanks, John. Must admit to finding this a tough workout myself, but satisfying for that, for the most part.

    Last in were BASTIA from wordplay, never having heard of it, and COMPRADORE from thin air, both the word and the gallery being entirely unfamiliar, but feasible.

  7. Myrvin says:

    I thought 10a started with QUIET which nicely fitted with some word like Acquire for 4d. Also ODDITY for 26. All sadly wrong.
    Never heard of 23 either. And I still don’t get it. CO = company; + PRADO in ME???
    Didn’t think of ANATOLE F thanks John.
    Dac should watch out what his knuckle nears.

  8. Stella Heath says:

    The Prado is in fact Madrid’s nº1 museum, but I think the correct parsing is as above: M(adrid)+Prado in ‘core’ (=centre).

    I’d forgotten the Foundations, thanks for reminding me, John, but other references were familiar, including Bastia, from the novel ‘Colomba’ by Mérimée ( of ‘Carmen’ fame). It was prescribed reading in A level French.

    I toyed with ‘quiet’ for the first half of 10a, but as it’s usually followed by ‘please’ (6 letters) I decided the Wimbledon reference must lead to ‘court’ – then took ages to decide what the other word was – d’oh!

  9. nmsindy says:

    I think, Myrvin, it’s explained above CORE (centre) M = Madrid’s No 1 (first letter) and PRADO. It was my last entry, tho I had heard the word before without remembering what it meant.

  10. NealH says:

    I had to resort to the internet to finish this, which is a bit disappointing. I don’t carry round lists of Corsican ports or Turkish regions in my head (and since I’d never heard of Anatole France, 1 down was unsolvable for me apart from the ia bit at the end). Accession for 4 down flashed through my mind, but I’d never heard of it used in that context, so I didn’t pursue the idea. The fact that it said “new addition” threw me a bit because that seems like a tautology and I thought the new must be there to provide the n rather than part of the definition. I got as far as comp?a?ore for 23 but I’d never heard of the word and couldn’t call Prado to mind. On the plus side, I liked the elegance and simplicity of 24 across.

  11. Myrvin says:

    Ahhhhhh. ‘Madrid’s number one’ = M! Nobody else quite said that, even if they meant it. I thought everyone but me knew that M was short for Madrid – we see that sort of thing a lot.
    I’m happy with it now. Thanks nms.

  12. flashling says:

    Well compradore was a new one on me, makes a change for gallery not being tate. The word new in accession didn’t help as I saw it as a final n. Personally found yesterday’s much easier, probably just as well in the circumstances…

  13. Scarpia says:

    Thanks John.
    Found this harder than usual for a Dac puzzle but all seemed fairly clued to me.Even the geographical answers,which I didn’t know,were gettable from the wordplay.
    Seemingly impenetrable clues fell into place with a couple of check letters,always a sign of a good puzzle to me.
    The Foundations were probably best known for being a British,rather than American soul group.
    I well remember the “our soul” vs. “their soul” debate in the N.M.E. :)

  14. Allan_C says:

    I got ‘Line of battle’ easily enough but thought the clueing a bit strained because I generally regard it as a naval term from the days of sail (hence ‘ship of the line’).
    With ‘Bastia’ today and ‘Clutha’ on Monday I’d suggest a good atlas with a comprehensive index should be on solvers’ shelves alongside their dictionaries. And, for good measure, on other occasions Brewer (his Dictionary of Phrase and Fable) comes in handy.

  15. Simon Harris says:

    I don’t disagree with you, Allan, but I suspect that what gets peoples’ goat a little is that on a weekday, you can’t realistically be expected to have those reference works about your person.

    In fact it’s barely possible to even do the Indy standing up on the tube or bus since they changed the layout; I’m not sure I could juggle an atlas and a Brewer’s as well :/

  16. Allan_C says:

    Point taken, Simon.

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