Posted by Ali on December 24th, 2010
This was something a little different, with no setter’s name given and 3 clues having one letter omitted from wordplay that we were told would help with a hidden message.
Regular solvers of thematic puzzles will be well versed in letters omitted from wordplay. Regular Indy solvers will be equally well versed in hidden messages (Ninas), though these are rarely signposted in this way and are usually just added by the setters for whatever reason (allegiance to certain football teams being a particular favourite!).
The obvious place to start here was therefore 18D and all the clues below it. Given that it’s Friday and we hadn’t seen him this week yet, my money was on Phi the minute I started this. And so it proved to be, with wordplay in 18D, 19D and 24D omitting the final P,I and H respectively, and the name itself completing the hidden message reading top to bottom in Rows 1,5, 11 and 15. Nicely done.
All that aside, this was perfectly and elegantly clued as we’ve come to expect from Phi, though definitely tough in places. Nowt wrong with that though. The hidden message will have put constraints on available words I’m sure, and tougher puzzles are always good at Christmas when there may be extra time to solve them.
On that subject – and with apologies for the shameless plug – Indy and FT setter Klingsor/Alberich has very kindly just published a debut puzzle of mine on his excellent website. If anybody fancies giving it a go in over the Xmas break in between turkey/mince pies/excessive drinking, it can be found here.
A very happy holidays to one and all.
|8||NIJINKSY – 1 + (JINKS) * in NY|
|9||RE-ECHO – (CHEER)* + 0|
|10||LEAP – Hidden in projectiLE APparently|
|11||I-AND-I – (INDIA)*|
|12||IVAN – NAIV with 1 moving to front|
|13||PILE – PIL[-at]E|
|14||ASTROLABES – (ATLASES + ORB)*|
|15||EDDIES – [-t]EDDIES|
|17||UNWELL – U.N + WELL|
|21||BRAINSTORM – B(ritain’s) RAIN STORM|
|24||PITH – PIT + H(ard)|
|25||TWIT – TWI[-s]T|
|26||ILIAD – 1 + DAIL rev.|
|27||MARK – I think this is a triple definition|
|28||ANORAK – A N (knight) OR A K(ing)|
|29||APOSTATE – A POST ATE|
|1||TIDELINE – TINE about DELI|
|2||HIPPIE – HIP (joint) + PIE (dessert)|
|3||ESTIMATE – I’M in ESTATE|
|4||CYGNETS – C[-learl]Y + (GENTS)*|
|5||ORSINO – R (King) + SIN between 00 (loves)|
|6||MEDITATE – ME + IT in DATE|
|7||PHRASE – [-acto]R in PHASE|
|16||DRIFTERS – D(eserted) + [-g]RIFTERS|
|18||NAME DROP – (DREAM ON)*|
|19||LIERATI – I in (TATLER)*|
|20||MOHICAN – HIC in MOAN|
|22||ROWENA – ANEW OR rev.|
|23||STINKO – TIN in SKO[-l]|
|24||PSMITH – MS rev. in PIT|