Fifteensquared

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Independent on Sunday 1074 by Quixote – 12th September 2010

Posted by Handel on September 19th, 2010

Handel.

We made rather heavy work of this one, and had to resort to aids to get the last couple (21ac and 6dn).  There were lots of very well worded clues here, and that’s probably what made us struggle as much as anything – a number of readings seemed possible in many cases. 15dn was very clever, so that’s our COD. 5dn was another very neat one, which has only just clicked as we’re writing this. In retrospect this was a really solid, challenging puzzle, so thanks to Quixote. Hope to see some of you at the Azed tribute on Saturday!

ACROSS

1. DE(S)IST

4. SPOON-FED dd

9. LET HAL

10. STROKING anagram of ‘sort’ then ‘king’ as a set piece, referring back to 2dn

12. T(A)INT

13. SKY ROCKET we didn’t know ‘rocket’ = criticism, but the OED’s excellent new free website informs us that one definition is ‘British informal: a severe reprimand’

14. RECALCITRANT (Carl interact)* an arbitrary-seeming name in a clue is often a sign of anagram fodder, and indeed that turns out to be the case here. Not sure what role the ‘See’ has at the start of this clue, other than helping the surface along

18. SCRAPING HOME dd

21. OENOPHILE didn’t get this till late in the day, but enjoyed it nonetheless: ‘I might enjoy getting the sack’. Sack is a type of wine, of course

23. TH(y)RUM

24. F(I LIP)INO

25. PA RENT good surface to this one: ‘Maybe Mum or Dad getting torn apart’

26. ENCIRCLE anagram of ‘circle’ with ‘r’ (registrar initially) bunged in it

27. A TONIC

DOWN

1. DI(L)A<TORY took a while to get this as dilatory just didn’t spring to mind

2. SET PIECE dd a knight is a piece in chess, as is a bishop. But a pawn isn’t in chess circles, so you’re better off with ‘chessmen’ if you ever need a collective noun for the whole cast!

3. SMART ALEC (calmer, sat)*

5. POTTY TRAINED the clue reads: ‘Being able to control output in trade’ Being able to control output is the rather witty definition, and ‘in trade’ is an anagram of ‘trained’, hence it’s ‘potty’ as in mad

6. rO(V OLd)Om quite tricky wordplay and hadn’t heard of the word, meaning ‘moulding’, either

7. F RISKY

8. DIG(IT)S

11. A S PI RATIONAL

15. NEGOTIANT (Agent into)* a very smart &lit

16. FOURTEEN (fortune)* plus ‘E’ for drug

17. HERM E TIC

19. COFFEE ie ‘toffee’ with the ‘t’ switched to a ‘c’

20. EN BLOC ‘one club’ anagrammised minus ‘U’ for ‘posh’

22. PAP ER

One Response to “Independent on Sunday 1074 by Quixote – 12th September 2010”

  1. scchua says:

    Thanks for the blog, Handel, and thanks to Quixote for another enjoyable Sunday offering.

    Favourite clue was 5D POTTY TRAINED, a reverse anagram where the answer gives the anagrind and fodder to give the clue’s wordplay. Great!

    14A: Yes, agree with you, in fact the “See..” is essential to the surface reading. Without it, “Carl interact …” would have been grammatically incorrect.

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