Never knowingly undersolved.

Independent on Sunday 1079 by Quixote – 17th October 2010

Posted by Handel on October 24th, 2010


We had all but three of these in place within 15 minutes, but didn’t manage to fill the grid until a day later because of three slightly tricky clues. 17ac has a very clear definition, but the cryptic still eludes us, and the word just didn’t occur to us at the time. 22ac was an unfamiliar word to us, and we didn’t see it from –a-t-r. Finally, 18dn was difficult as it’s a word that wasn’t familiar, and the ordering of the words, though perfectly grammatical, is unusual and consequently much harder to parse. Explanation of 17ac very welcome!


1. CHAMBER MUSIC cd, based on the idea that little room = chamber

9. MAN  AGE  R

10. LAND  O.R. Walter Savage Landor is our writer

11. SO-AND-SO thus = so then (a don’s)*

12. M  ALICE

13. ME  (NI<)  AL

15. HAN(d)  OVER

17. DIGRAPH haven’t worked this one out, sadly. The clue reads ‘Possibly a couple of characters in shop without work’

19. S  A  CH  IN sure this name is very familiar to many of you, but we don’t follow cricket so had to get this from the SI

20. WEALTH ‘health’ with the first character changed

22. PLAN  TER this was one of our troublesome trio (17 and 22ac, 18dn)

24. burSTING Old didn’t know the word, but pretty easy to see it in there

25. REGIONS (Niger so)*

26. SHEPHERD’S PIE cd, based on ‘crook’ in the surface meaning suggesting a thief or similar, rather than of the shepherding variety


2. HAMPSTEAD HEATH (has made the path)*

3. MAN-EATING (I’m a gannet)*

4. EDGED dd

5. MURDOCH ‘h rum’ backwards, with ‘doc’ inside

6. SALTMINES (snails met)*

7. CAN  A  L

8. CONCERTI  GROSSI (correcting is so)

14. LOATHSOME (males hoot)*


18. H(A’  PORT)H unusual word order, but a sound clue

21. (p)LANES

23. AUG  UR

Walter Savage Landor

5 Responses to “Independent on Sunday 1079 by Quixote – 17th October 2010”

  1. Radler says:

    17ac A digraph is a couple of characters with a single sound, such as “sh” – so as in “shop” without “op”

  2. sidey says:

    The ‘sh’ of shop is an example of a digraph. Apparently.

  3. Quixote says:

    The word ‘digraph’ is now very much part of the primary school curriculum, would you believe it?

  4. Stella Heath says:

    Hi Handel, thanks for the blog, and thanks for dropping in, Quixote.

    I guessed ‘digraph’ to be a couple of characters, but assumed it to be connected with computers, so thanks for the explanation, Radler.

    Regarding 18d., I don’t understand your comment “unusual word order” – do you mean in the clue or in the (for me, at least) quite common abbreviation of ha’penny-worth?

    I didn’t know ‘planter’ as a settler, can0t follow cricket from Spain, and had never heard of Mr. Landor, but all were very fairly clued, so no real problem.

    I particularly liked 26ac., with its ‘aha’ moment, and 2d. for the smooth surface.

  5. Handel says:

    Hi Stella. Unfortunately I don’t have the puzzle anymore, but the unusual word order comment related to the wordplay in 18d, not the definition.

    Thanks all for the explanation of 17ac – disappointing that we didn’t grasp that one as ‘shop without work’ equalling ‘sh’ was pretty clear.

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