Never knowingly undersolved.

Guardian Quiptic 566 / Pan

Posted by Big Dave on September 20th, 2010

Big Dave.

A relatively straightforward solve for my first review on this site.  Not one of my favourite puzzles, but only one or two minor niggles.

All definitions given are from Chambers 11th Edition.  Most of the standard abbreviations used in the wordplay are shown with the unused letters in brackets e.g. G(ood).

1 SEGMENT – a section is built up by putting SENT (dispatched) around (to capture) GM and E (Ecstasy / drug)
5 FATSOES – this growing proportion of the UK population is derived from an anagram (outrageously) of FEAST SO
9 HEADIER – an anagram (oddly) of HER IDEA gives a word meaning more exciting
10 IMAGERY – a charade of I (the setter) with MA (Master of Arts degree), G(ood), E (first in English) R (beginning to Regret) and Y (plaY’s final) gives a literary device consisting of figures of speech
11 ARMSTRONG – an anagram (being wasted) of SNORT GRAM gives the name of the first man on the moon
12 EVADE – take E(nglish) and DAVE (man) the wrong way around (reversed) to get a verb meaning to skirt – what do you think about  the way in which Englishman is used in the clue?
13 SYRUP – this sticky stuff is hidden inside mesSY RUPture
15 INCOMMODE – put INCOME (revenue) around (protecting) MoD (Ministry of Defence) to get a verb meaning to cause trouble
17 MIDSUMMER – this time of year is derived by putting a MUMMER (an actor in a folk-play) around (boxes) IDS (some fishes) – the id, or ide,  is a fish, closely related to the chub and inhabiting fresh water in N Europe, which is much beloved of crossword setters
19 NYMPH – P, the abbreviation for Priest, is placed inside (interrupts) an anagram (unusual) of HYMN to get one of the divinities who lived in mountains, rivers, trees, etc.
22 SNACK – N, the symbol for the Newton, the SI unit of force, is inserted (tucked) into a SACK (large bag) to get a light meal (crisps, say)
23 HARBINGER – a forerunner, a thing which tells of the onset or coming (warning sign) is a charade of HAR(m) (endless damage) and a BINGER (irresponsible drinker) – this word is usually seen in expressions like “harbinger of death” or “harbinger of doom”
25 ALIMENT – nourishment or food is built up from Muhammad ALI, former World Heavyweight Boxing Champion, MEN (attendants) and T (end of fighT)
26 DEFENCE – take ED, a common abbreviation for editor, reverse it (backing) and follow it with FENCE, a slang word for a receiver of stolen
goods, to get protection
27 DIGITAL – a type of transmission that has largely replaced analogue is a charade of to DIG (taunt) and most of ITAL(y)
28 EARHART – an anagram (about) of HEAR followed by ART (skill) gives Amelia, the famous aviatrix

1 SCHNAPS – put CH, an abbreviation for chaplain, and NAPS (has forty winks) after S(econd) to get the alternative spelling of a strong alcoholic drink
2 GRAMMAR – take RAM (to stuff) and MARG (the accepted contraction of a butter-like spread) and reverse them (about) to get a book about language – the significance of the square brackets in the clue is totally lost on me
3 EDICT – an order is constructed by putting DI (girl) inside ECT – electroconvulsive therapy is a controversial treatment for psychiatric problems
4 TERRORISM – put T(ime), I (one) and SM (Sergeant Major) around (admitted) an ERROR (mistake) to get organised violence and intimidation
5 FLING – a double definition – a brief liaison or a lively Highland dance
6 TRADESMAN – an anagram (rebuilt) of A SMART DEN gives a skilled worker
7 OREGANO – an anagram (cooked) of EGO(N) RONA(Y) without the Y (tip of Yummy) and N(ew) gives this herb
8 STYRENE – an oily hydrocarbon is a charade of STY, a filthy place, and RENÉ, the archetypal Frenchmen
14 PLUCKIEST – a word meaning bravest comes from P(rince) and LUCKIEST (most fortunate)
16 CARTRIDGE – a charade of C(ollege), ART (man) and RIDGE (top of roof) gives a case containing the charge for a gun
17 MUSTARD – put MUD (wet earth) around (home to) STAR (famous) to get this plant with yellow flowers and slender seed pods which are used to prepare a condiment
18 DRAWING – a DRAG (bore or nuisance) is placed around (secures) a WIN (victory) to get some artwork
20 MAGENTA – a reddish purple colour is an anagram (damage) of MEGA TAN
21 HARVEST – around (taking) V (the Roman numeral for five), E and S (East and South / bearings) place a HART (animal) to get a crop
23 HOTEL – HO(use) in front of to LET (rent) reversed (put up) gives a place for paying guests
24 INFER – a verb meaning to figure out is hidden inside (essentials) boffIN FERmat’s

10 Responses to “Guardian Quiptic 566 / Pan”

  1. Pommers says:

    Hello BD – we meet again!
    Agree with your comments. Also can’t see what the square brackets bring to the party.
    Thanks for the blog and to Pan for a gentle start to the week.

  2. crypticsue says:

    Agree with your comments. I didn’t know you could spell 5a with an E in it. Wonder if all today’s puzzles are going to be on the easy side. Thanks for the blog.

  3. Kathryn's Dad says:

    Thanks Big Dave. I found much to like in this one, especially the intersecting MIDSUMMER and MUSTARD. I think this is the kind of thing I would have liked to have had a go at when I was less experienced: very clear clueing, any less familiar words having easy wordplay, and not too many cryptic definitions.

    Excellent first blog, with very clear and thorough explanations. And I see you managed to get yourself a namecheck in 12ac. I thought this clue worked all right, btw.

    The square brackets? No idea. Were they in the dead tree version as well?

  4. sidey says:

    “Were they in the dead tree version as well?”

    Quiptic’s on-line only isn’t it? I suspect the [] were a standard Graun glitch. Which is a polite way of saying someone’s not doing their job.

  5. Kathryn's Dad says:

    Of course, sidey, it’s on-line only. Senior moment. Grauniad glitch, then, to make life even harder for beginning solvers.

  6. egroeg says:

    This is just to point out that if it weren’t for those of us who buy the “dead tree version”, the standard cryptic would not be available free to cliche-ridden bloggers.

  7. Derek Lazenby says:

    As a cryptic this was fine, as a Quiptic it once again took twice as long as today’s Rufus and lacked any plain clues which the blurb advertises.

    One minor query. In 7d, should it not be tips rather than tip, given that more than one word has to be processed that way?

  8. Big Dave says:


    I agonised over whether to comment on 7d, and deleted a phrase from my original draft. I agree that tips might have been a better approach, but new is commonly abbreviated to N(ew) and I took it that “without tip of yummy new” was to be read as “without (a) tip of yummy (b) new”. I certainly didn’t like it.

  9. Pommers says:

    Glad nobody has come up with an explanation of the square brackets yet. Thought I must have been missing something!
    I thought 7d a little contrived, but OK.
    See you on your own blog tomorrow – if her indoors will give me time to look at the DT Xword!

  10. Sponge says:

    I’m new to cryptics and trying to learn. I really enjoyed this one, I only had to use the cheat button on five clues, which is great for me (1a, 5a, 10a, 1d and 8d). I am still at the point where many of the others, I got without fully understanding the clue, which is why this blog is so helpful. Thank you for your help and comments.

    I found quiptic 565 way too hard, so more like this will keep me on my way.

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