Never knowingly undersolved.

Guardian Quiptic nº563 by Moley

Posted by Stella on August 30th, 2010


This puzzle was on the easy side for Quiptics, with some clever surfaces and a few smiles.

I hope to live up to Gaufrid’s brilliant initial blog!


1. SERIAL homophone – sounds like “cereal”

4. AGHAST anagram of *AT GASH, indicated by ‘newly made’

9. PEEP charade of PE (Physical Education) + EP (Extended Play = ‘an old disc’)

10. TEST RESULT charade of ‘examine’ + cryptic definition (cd). The Test is an example of ‘a sporting challenge.’

11. STREWN charade of anagram of *WESTERN (indicated by ‘movement’) minus one of the ‘e’s’ (‘omits English contribution’)

12. ABERRANT charade of AB = ‘(able) seaman’ +ERRANT = ‘in search of adventure’, like a knight errant.

13. IDLE HANDS cryptic definition (cd) with reference to the phrase our grandmothers were so fond of: The devil (Old Nick) makes works for idem.

15. KIND double definition (dd.)

16. ACRE double definition (dd.) Acre (HebrewAkko; Arabic: , Akka)[1] also Akko, is a city in the Western Galilee region of northern Israel and is situated on a low promontory at the northern extremity of Haifa Bay. (Wikipedia)

17. ASTRONOMY anagram of *MASONRY TO indicated by ‘rebuild’. def. ‘study that looks heavenward’

21. AMPHIBIA charade of A = ‘one’ + M = ‘male’ + PHI = ‘Greek letter’ + first letters of B(ans) I(n) A(thens) indicated by ‘initially’

22. SPRING double definition (dd.). A nice misdirection, as the clue appears to indicate a culinary reference.

24. UNRIVALLED charade of UN = United Nations = ‘international organisation’ + LED = ‘in front’ around RIVAL = ‘opponent’ (‘intervened’ here indicates the insertion of one word between two others )

25. PLAY hidden in ‘madcaP LAYing’.

26. CLEVER C = ‘about’ (Latin ‘circa’ as in ‘c. 1900) + LEVER = ‘machine part’

27. BEETLE charade of anagram of *BÊTE before (indicated by ‘initially’) LE = ‘the’ in French


1. SCENTED anagram of *DESCENT indicated by ‘unconventional’

2. RUPEE initial letters of R(ugby) U(nion) P(ro) E(vaded) E(xtradition), indicated by ‘originally’

3. ANTENNA charade of TEN (= a number) in ANNA (indicated by ‘Anna held’)

5. GARDEN anagram of *DANGER indicated by ‘terrible’

6. ASSERTION charade of ASS =’fool’ + ER = ‘the Queen’ + anagram of *INTO indicated by ‘perhaps’

7. TALONED charade of TA = ‘thanks’ + LONE = ‘single’ + D(aughter)

8. AS HARD AS NAILS cryptic definition (cd) Talons can be described this way. A weak clue as there is no real definition, and it can only be guessed by the crossing letters.

14. EARTHRISE anagram of *HARRIES ET indicated by ‘somehow’. Chambers has no entry for this phenomenon, though I assume it might exist if we were on the moon, for example.

16. ALMANAC anagram of *LAMA CAN indicated by ‘unusual’

18. RESIDUE charade of RESIDE = ‘live’ around (‘outside’) U(niversity)

19. MANDATE charade of MAN = ‘fellow’ + DATE =’appointment’

mandate noun 1 a right or authorization given to a nation, person, etc to act on behalf of others. (Chambers online)

20. ABLAZE charade of AB(le seaman) = sailor + LAZE =’idle’ (vb.)

23. REPOT >TOPER indicated by ‘turned up’

tope1 verb (toped, toping) intrans, archaic to drink alcohol to excess. toper noun.

20 Responses to “Guardian Quiptic nº563 by Moley”

  1. odon says:

    Thank you for blogging the quiptic puzzle! Very much appreciated.
    I enjoyed 14d and got 23d despite never having heard of the verb ‘to tope’.
    I couldn’t do 16a and (annoyingly) 20d, so I found this puzzle harder than today’s Rufus.

  2. Eileen says:

    Congratulations on your first blog, Stella – nothing to add! :-)

  3. Big Dave says:

    Well done Stella.

    I think the clue for 8d is incomplete, especially as it starts with a lower-case letter.

  4. Eileen says:

    re 8dn: surely it’s just that the second ellipsis has been accidentally omitted?

  5. Stella says:

    Thanks, Eileen.

    Hi Big Dave,

    If you take another look at the puzzle, you’ll see that 7d ands in ‘…’, which often (though by no means always) indicates a connection with the following clue. My understanding here was that talons are hard, but as I say above, I found this clue unsatisfactory.

    Odon, you’ll find ‘tope’ quite often if you keep doing crosswords, as I hope you will. It’s better than toping your time away 😆

  6. Stella says:

    Our posts crossed, Eileen; I’m sure you’re right.

  7. Big Dave says:

    Thanks to both of you.

    Clever tricks like linking clues are totally lost on someone like me who works on the current online clue shown to the right of the grid, but the ellipsis would certainly have helped had it been there.

  8. Stella says:

    I work online, too, Dave. I live in Spain and it’s my only access to the dailies – besides, the Quiptic is only available online. We just have to learn to keep our eyes open for this ind of thing. :)

  9. Kathryn's Dad says:

    Thank you, Stella.

    Enjoyable and generally well-clued, I thought, although like you I can’t really see how AS HARD AS NAILS works, with or without ellipses … But I liked the surface in 23ac.

    EARTHRISE reminded me of the stunning photographs which the Apollo astronauts took from the moon on one of the early missions. I’d like to put a link here but don’t know how to; however, if you Google “earthrise apollo” you’ll get the images in question.

  10. Sil van den Hoek says:

    Thank you, Stella, chapeau! [as your neighbours say] :)
    A quiptic very different from last week’s, and surely much more suitable for beginners than that one.

    To add to what KD said, Wikipedia gives us:
    “Earthrise is the name given to NASA image AS8-14-2383, taken by astronaut William Anders during the Apollo 8 mission, the first manned voyage to orbit the Moon”.
    There’s at least one picture on that page:

    BTW, in 1ac I initially had SPREAD.
    That is both ‘food’ ánd ‘doled out at intervals’.
    However, the word ‘heard’ in the clue then doesn’t make sense, so I opted for the right answer eventually.

  11. Stella says:

    Do you mean 22a, KD?

  12. Stella says:

    You copy and paste the entire address, as it appears at the top of the screen.

  13. Kathryn's Dad says:

    Sorry, Stella, meant 23dn. Across, down … quick, cryptic … too many options for a Bear of Little Brain, I’m afraid.

  14. Stella says:

    KD 😆

    Hi Sil, and thanks for your comments, which were posted while I was looking for the link to earthrise.

    I tried ‘spread’ for 1a, too, and wondered where the homophone was :)

  15. tupu says:

    HI Stella
    A very good blog. Thanks. Ta Moley too.

    I decided to have a (too) quick go at this. I had ‘spread’ at 1a and couldn’t hear the ‘heard’ but lazily moved on. It is a good clue.

    3d left me in a little doubt with ‘of .. devices’ but it had to be antenna.

    I liked 11a, 21a, and 14. I am happy with 8d since it clearly links back to 7d.

    Thanks again.

  16. Rishi says:

    In the very few minutes of my engagement with this quiptic (the first for me) online, I too had SPREAD at 1ac.

    This I put in after having got all the crossings from the Down answers.

    Which goes to show the role that checked letters play in our solving.

    Similarly, I had no doubt about EARTHRISE but this is not a dictionary word, so I was hesitant for a while before typing in the letters.

    I was a journalist during those early days of missions to moon and I remember my caption “Coming round” for a small item that was about members of flat earth society revising their views on seeing photos of the earth taken from space. Yet, I didn’t remember the caption that was given to the spectacle.

  17. Derek Lazenby says:

    Yup, this is more like what a Quiptic should be. Ta to setter and blogger.

    If this was a regular daily, using AB=sailor/seaman twice would be frowned upon, but I guess it helps new comers feel at home. I only mention it in case any of the vast army of readers who don’t post have any ambitions towards compiling a crossword.

    Talking of the VA of RWDP, hey guys and gals. Come on in the water is lovely :)

    And in case any of you missed it, Rufus dropped in late on yesterday’s blog. Life will be better if you don’t take up his challenge!

  18. Stella says:

    Hi Derek.

    Pardon my ignorance, but what on earth is the VA of RWDP?

    I shall now move on to Rufus’s challenge 😀

  19. Derek Lazenby says:

    Try reading the previous paragraph again, but a tad more carefully! Grin!

  20. Stella says:

    OIC 😆

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