Posted by Pierre on December 5th, 2010
My first Everyman blog, and a pleasure for me to solve it and explain it. I’ve been a fan of Everyman for many years and as usual this one didn’t disappoint. It might have been first night nerves, but I did find this harder than usual. Three-quarters of it went in pretty straightforwardly, but there were some unusual words that held me up near the end.
dd double definition
cd cryptic definition
1 Introduction to Homer, or superb Roman poet
H + OR + ACE
4 A crooner, fellow from an Oxfordshire town
A + BING + DON
Bing, of course, is Mr Crosby, possibly the best known of the crooners.
9 Irritable old servants
This is one of the clues I struggled with, mainly because the word I’d use would be liverish. Perfectly fair though.
10 Awfully foul brew could make one flounce
Not a word I’d come across before, but it’s clued clearly enough. ‘A flounce, ruffle or other ornamental trim.’
12 Precise, short, theatre cleaner
Nice clue, with two definitions: of ‘precise’, and ‘short’ in the alcoholic sense.
14 Itinerant Romanians in an Italian-speaking country
16 Card (king) Welshman rejected
K + EVAN reversed
17 A bye, perhaps, in over
19 Accept compassion is to be encouraged
21 Two pianists, drunk
BRAHMS AND LISZT
Which of course is Cockney rhyming slang for a word I couldn’t possibly elucidate for an audience as genteel as fifteensquared. Oh, all right then, it’s ‘pissed’.
24 Free wood used to make a stall
LOOSE + BOX
I couldn’t see this even when I’d got all the crossing letters; then it was a question of ‘it must be LOOSE, what else fits?’ It’s not in the SOED, and some online dictionaries give it as LOOSE-BOX, but Collins gives it as one word: ‘an enclosed and covered stall with a door in which an animal can be confined.’
25 Guide by hand
26 Anxiety shown by South American writers at closing of bookstore
S + US + PENS + E
27 Small number on team backing inventor
NO SIDE reversed.
1 Relative in his flares, bullied around start of term
(HIS FLARES T)*
2 Right above pirate ship
R + OVER
I spent far too long trying to convince myself that there was a ship called a RATAR.
3 Company car is damaged making for a Mediterranean island
CO + (CAR IS)*
5 OU sportsman keeping a woman of intelligence
BLUE + STOCKING
OU is Oxford University rather than the Open University. Wonder why they’re called this?
6 Beat writer, at first, with a club
NIB + LICK
An old name for a golf club and a word I only know from doing crosswords.
7 During an illness, almost over, trouble a spiritual leader
AIL in MALAD(Y) reversed plus A
One that was easier to solve than to parse.
8 Pond creature young toad initially turns into
NEW + T
The favourite pet of 21 across.
11 Class points out what a theatre may put on
Charade of VARIETY (class) and SHOWS (points out)
13 Running on tenth lap in old Olympic event
(ON TENTH LAP)* I think Everyman has inserted ‘old’ because the competition we have nowadays is called the ‘modern pentathlon’.
15 Hitchcock film noir – too darned American
(NOIR TOO)* + US
Nicely misleading use of ‘film noir’ and ‘darned’ as the anagram indicator.
18 A grant secured by the sportsman
A + TH(LET)E
Another clever clue with a lovely surface.
20 Rope with which Henry gets hauled up
HAL + DRAY reversed
22 Problems housing 50 in wretched dwellings
Insertion of L (50 in Roman numerals) in SUMS.
23 Additional matter written about learner driver
Another insertion, of L in PUS. Pus is matter, I suppose, although not a particularly pleasant one to contemplate on a Sunday morning …
Super puzzle, thank you Everyman.