Never knowingly undersolved.

Financial Times 13,590 / Gurney

Posted by smiffy on January 13th, 2011


This was an abundance of plain-sailing – if anything, the main risk was of skirting too close to The Doldrums in places – and my annotations are correspondingly skimpy, so please holler if anything is unclear.  Overall, the preponderance of double definition clues and gently camouflaged anagrams put me in mind of the Telegraph puzzles of yesteryear (on which I cut my solving teeth).

1 ROSETTE -hidden.
5 DESKTOP - D{irector} + (kept so)*.
9 SCRAP – double def’n.
10 PRIMITIVE – double def’n (although maybe, a little too close for comfort?).
11 EXONERATE - ex + one + rate.  The canonical treatment of this grid-friendly answer.
12 SWEDE – wed on SE.
13 TRADE – hidden reversal.
15 AVALANCHE – (Clan have a).
18 PREVALENT - Al in prevent.
19 ERROR – {t}error.
21 SABOT - (Boast)*.
23 PAROCHIAL – PA + (choir)* + a + L.
25 AMAZEMENT - a maze + homophone of “meant”.
26 ABATE – homophone of “a bait”.
27 ENTITLE - ENT (Ear, Nose & throat) + it + le.  The structure is a little clunky, and it’s not as if the surface offers much by way of redemption or mitigation.
28 CONVENE - convent, with e for t.  Again, there could be grounds to quibble that the wordplay fodder and the answer are pretty much peas from the same pod originally.

1 RASHEST - she in (Tsar)<.
2 SURROGATE - (argues “Rot”)*.
3 TEPEE – hidden reversal.
4 ESPLANADE - (dean’s plea)*.
5 DRIVE – Dr + I’ve.
6 SHIPSHAPE - cryptic def’n.
7 TRIPE - {Merlo}t + ripe.
8 PRECEDE – P + (decree)*.
14 ENACTMENT – (N{evada} + can’t meet)*.
16 ANTARCTIC – (Car intact)*.
17 CARTILAGE - (lacerating)* – n{ous}.
18 POSTAGE – Ost (Gr.) in page.
20 RELIEVE - reli{c} + eve.
22 BLAST - B + last.
23 PIECE – double def’n.
24 CHAIN - CH + a + in.

5 Responses to “Financial Times 13,590 / Gurney”

  1. Tony Welsh says:

    Thanks, Smiffy. Finished in record time, though I missed the double definition in 23d. This was the last word I put in and did not know why. Looking for something more devious I suppose.

  2. Bracoman says:

    Thanks for the blog. Like you I found this a bit tedious and mechanical. Sorry to be so negative.

  3. jmac says:

    Generally pretty straightforward although I did find the south east quadrant a bit tough. I did like this puzzle though because all the clues were fair. I particularly liked POSTAGE, EXONERATE, and ABATE.

  4. bamberger says:

    One of the rare FT crosswords that I finish without aids in a reasonable time. Thanks Gurney not tedious for me.

  5. Bannsider says:

    Not tedious for me either. Very easy certainly, but I enjoy being able to write the answers in! It’s worth bearing in mind that writing easy clues is not an easy art at all. It is, on the other hand, very easy to write difficult ones – all you need to do is not bother about accuracy or fairness, something the adept writer of easier clues must always be attentive to.

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