Fifteensquared

Never knowingly undersolved.

Financial Times 13,520 / Armonie

Posted by Agentzero on October 19th, 2010

Agentzero.

A quick solve today. I download the FT crossword just after 7 pm New York time, and solve it on the train ride out of Manhattan. This one fell before we crossed the Harlem River. As usual, Armonie’s clues are remarkably terse, with fine surfaces. Today’s favourite — nothing dramatic, but a perfect example of Armonie’s craft — was 29 across.

Across
1 PAWNSHOP PAWNS (puppets) HOP (dance)
5 SHEARS S[on] HEARS (picks up)
9 GRANDSON GRANDS (thousands) ON (working)
10 SOFTEN S[hilling] (old bob) OFTEN (frequently)
12 DYSPEPSIA *(SAID PEPYS)
13 NICKS dd
14 SHAM SHAM[e] (endless embarrassment)
16 MISTAKE *(IT’S) in MAKE (manufacture)
19 ANDANTE DAN (judoka) in ANTE (speculation).  I solved this from the definition, and later learned that a judoka is a practitioner of judo, and dan are the levels in the ranking system applied by the Japanese to judo and many other arts.
21 HIDE dd
24 DRESS ADDRESS (speech) minus AD (notice)
25 OUTGOINGS dd
27 ICEBOX ICE (kill) BOX (blow)
28 DIRECTOR DIRECT (frank) OR (alternative)
29 LATENT LATE (behind) NT (New Testament = books)
30 STENDHAL END (wind up) in *(HALTS)
 
Down
1 PAGODA P.A. (per annum = each year) GOD (deity) A
2 WRASSE *(SWEARS)
3 SEDGE S[mall] EDGE (border)
4 OPOSSUM OP. (work) + O[rdinary] S[eaman] + SUM (reckoning)
6 HOOK-NOSED HOOK (the captain) NOSED (snooped)
7 AUTOCRAT *(ACTUATOR)
8 SINISTER N[orthern] I[reland] in SISTER (nun)
11 WARM WAR (conflict) M (Mike, in phonetic alphabet)
15 HANDS DOWN dd
17 MANDRILL MAN (crew, as a verb) DRILL (train)
18 ADHERENT *(HEAD) + RENT (lease).  Interestingly, “arranged lease for supporter” could by itself be a clue for EASEL
20 EROS SORE (chap) reversed
21 HIT LIST HIT (winner) LIST (inclination)
22 SNITCH NIT (clot) in SCH[ool]
23 ASTRAL ST (saint) in ARAL (the sea)
26 ODEON ODE (poem) ON (about)

4 Responses to “Financial Times 13,520 / Armonie”

  1. bamberger says:

    Got the top half out but the bottom half was almost blank when I gave up.
    30a I looked blankly at the answer and even after googling I was left thinking how obscure is that?
    20d I was thinking of male names and reversing them so completely fooled by this one.
    23d I may have heard of aral but it didn’t spring to mind.

    Liked 1a

  2. Tony Welsh says:

    I found it easier than usual today and, unlike Bamberger, Stendhal and astral were the first two I got! If you think Stendhal is obscure, surely wrasse is much more so. It had to be that, but I needed to check the dictionary. I too got Andante from the definition (and the letters I had) with absolutely no help from the rest of the clue, judoka not being in my dictionary.

  3. Walduck says:

    Agentzero: if you finished this before the Harlem River on Metro North that is impressive indeed! I usually do (well, attempt) these on the 1 train from midtown, and even then I have usually barely dented it by the Harlem River!

  4. Agentzero says:

    Thanks, Walduck! I sat down a little while before the train left, so it was about 10 minutes total time. Rest assured that most of these puzzles take me longer than that!

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