Never knowingly undersolved.

Independent 7436 by Quaiteaux

Posted by nmsindy on August 16th, 2010


Pleasing puzzle with some nice humorous  touches from Quaiteaux.   I found parts of it very easy, but then struggled a bit with the NW corner, tho my last two entries were 13A and 6D.  Solving time, 24 mins.  For technical reasons associated with the computer I’m working on today, I cannot access the solutions on the Indy website to verify.      If any are wrong, happy if someone can point that out.

* = anagram


8 FURLOUGH    U (bend) in FR (father = priest)  LOUGH (Irish lake)

9 ACTS UP    (pussycat)* less the central ‘sy’ (heartless)

10 SUMMIT   mm in suit

11 LADYLIKE    (idly)* in lake

12 CHANCERY    chance   ry

13 INSTIL    definition:  drop in   first letters of the last six words in clue

14 FLY OFF THE  HANDLE    FLY (knowing) OF FT(paper) HE  HANDLE (name)

18 AVALON    AL(l) in NOVA (reversed)

20 LACTATES   (as cattle)*  &lit, I guess

23 STRATEGY   (great)* in STY

24 REMAIN    (seminar)* less s (start)

25 GROUSE   Double definition

26 NONESUCH    Nones (service)   eunUCH


1 EUNUCH    V amusing cryptic definition


3 SUBTLE    (belts u)*      I really liked this one.

4 SHILLYSHALLYING     silly sally as a drunk might say it, (gin)*

5 SANDWICH    Wensleydale (cheese) might be found in a sandwich, I guess

6 STYLES     Took me ages to see this, it’s all reversed (upwards), Scheme initially (first letter) Ely (see) TS (Eliot)

7 DUCK     BILL    Platypus

15 LAVA (hot stuff)  TORY

16 FINGERED    Double definition

17 NEAR MISS    Great fun, this

19 LE   AGUE

21 CORONA     Hidden

22 E   VINCE (Cable – politician)

16 Responses to “Independent 7436 by Quaiteaux”

  1. Kathryn's Dad says:

    Thanks, nms. I did this online today and can confirm that you got 10/10. No stand-out clues for me in this one, but a very enjoyable solve nonetheless from a setter we don’t see very often, I think. (Does he/she have an alter ego?) I did however laugh at NEAR MISS.

    Vince Cable seems to be cropping up everywhere recently since his higher profile in the coalition government.

    I got this all except ACTS UP, which I couldn’t see, because the online version gave the enumeration as (6) and not (4,2). So the editor only gets 8/10 today …

  2. Myrvin says:

    Thank you nms
    I didn’t like this very much I’m afraid. I nearly gave up when I had to cheat on 9a – for the same reason as KD. I hope it’s the editor’s fault.
    Battled through the top left like you.

  3. eimi says:

    Now fixed. Almost everything’s the editor’s fault, as I’m expected to spot mistakes.

  4. Myrvin says:

    Well done eimi. What power!

  5. Stella Heath says:

    I actually got the NW corner first. Re 9a, the division was in the grid, if not in the clue; and I got ‘styles’ from the word-play, starting with <TS (Eliot).

    This did produce a few smiles, and I solved it with slightly more ease than the usual Indy, perhaps because I changed my solving method.

    I do it online (I live in Spain), on a small notebook pc, so the clues don't fit on the screen along with the grid. Usually, I like to go through the across clues first, then the down ones, to deal quickly with the obvious answers before concentrating on the more complicated.

    This time, due to the difficulty mentioned, I decided to try going by quarters, and it seems to have worked out.

  6. sidey says:

    Someone once mentioned a program to convert The Indie to a PDF, I wish they’d make it available :(

  7. NealH says:

    I rather carelessly put bustle for 3 down because it was the first word I thought of that matched the anagram and I thought maybe it was some obscure synonym. The online site accepted this and flashed up the message to say the puzzle was completed successfully (it does the same with subtle). On investigation, I see that it has regressed to flashing up the message as soon as all the squares are filled in rather than when they are filled in correctly.

    I found the NE corner most difficult. For 5 down, I was convinced that it must be land???? because it was port (=left) + and. Styles was also quite tricky, as the only word I could think of that seemed vaguely to match the definition “forms” was “stalls”.

  8. Myrvin says:

    NealH. That’s scary – I might have got some of it wrong!
    FURLOUGH was tough for me, but only because I can’t spell the Irish for lake.
    7d, Didn’t we have the platypus in something else recently?
    I think the echidna needs an outing.

  9. Kathryn's Dad says:

    You’re right, Neal – I’ve just filled in the grid with letter As and it’s congratulated me. It hasn’t always been thus: I remember it not letting me put MADAME BUTTERFLY in a bit ago but insisting on MADAMA BUTTERFLY. The site has been a bit glitchy recently though, I’ve noticed – and there was a case a month or so ago where it allowed you to reveal the answers to Eimi’s Saturday prize crossword on the day it was published.

    Oh for the life of a crossword editor … good puzzle, praise the setter; anything remotely wrong, give the editor some grief. But the quality of the puzzles is unfailingly good, which is the main thing, so thank you to both editor and setters.

    (And yes, I too wanted to put LAND???? for 5dn.)

  10. mhl says:

    Thanks for the post nmsindy – a very enjoyable puzzle. We also found the NW quadrant the most difficult, not knowing FURLOUGH and failing to remember the Court of CHANCERY.

    sidey: I wrote a script that converts the CCJ format to PUZ, which helps with generating PDFs of the Independent crossword:

    … but that’s deliberately only likely to be of use if you’re a Linux user with a reasonable amount of programming experience. eimi pointed out before that not having a printable version online may have an effect of encouraging to people to buy the paper, so I don’t want to make the process of generating PDFs any more accessible.

    Since we moved to Switzerland I don’t think I’ve seen a real copy of the Indepedent at all – you can sometimes get the Guardian, but always a day late and at a quite extraordinary price.

  11. flashling says:

    Quite a struggle for me but that could be due to hangover from night before…
    Liked Eunuch when it finally twigged and stared at styles for ages before seeing why it was right. Compiler’s pseudonym? Character from the Pink Panther films who was Clueso’s assistant who keeps attacking him?

  12. sidey says:

    Thank you mhl, it’s not meanness, I do buy the Indie when I want a physical version, but due to various factors I find the online version almost impossible to use. I have the kit to ‘fill-in’ PDFs so I’ll have a play. Thanks again.

  13. Scarpia says:

    Thanks nms.
    First time I’ve come across this setter and it took me a little while to get on his wavelength.Still found it pretty tough once I had.
    Good puzzle though with some clever clues,1 and 6 down in particular.
    2 down; I’ve come across similar wordplay before and also for 4 down.
    Enumeration for 6 across held me up but once check letters were in place it could only be ACTS UP.I couldn’t find a definition that would fit CATSUP!

  14. Wil Ransome says:

    22dn: ‘Cable put on…[e]’ would suggest to me Vincee. It’s a down clue, and weren’t we told once that in a down clue A on B had to be AB, whereas in an across clue A on B was BA? Or perhaps I’m remembering it wrongly.

  15. Paul B says:

    By convention, certainly this is the case. But … but … from a cryptic reader’s POV, ’tis hard to fault.

    Enjoyable crossword from m’colleague, with some witty moves.

  16. Allan_C says:

    One of the satisfactions for me of crossword solving is physically filling in the answers on paper, so I don’t usually look at the online version. On occasion, though, such as when the paper fails to arrive or the wrong grid is printed, I have needed to go there. It’s a bit of a long-winded business but you can print out a useable version using “Print Screen” to capture it and paste into, say, MS Paint. But it takes a number of passes (as you can’t get the grid and all the clues on screen at the same time) and then involves more cutting and pasting to arrange everything into a covenient layout for printing. The printed quality of the clues isn’t brilliant but they’re readable. Better than nothing in an “emergency”.

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