Never knowingly undersolved.

Independent 7583 by Phi

Posted by flashling on February 4th, 2011


After my plaintive cry that I might not be able to post today, the 15sq genie and helper (djinn and tonic) spirited away from the Indy with an early copy so here it is.

Friday Phi and a bit tricky in places, I hadn’t come across some of the thematic answers but the clueing is fair enough. Well written this but a bit too bookish for me alas as I’m not that well read. So for me it was close but no cigar without the reveal button to complete it.

It’s not a prize crossword.

But the thematic link is. All the 15s are Literary Prizes. Nice one Phi. Thank you.

1 TURNER R in TUNER. The Turner Prize
10 ORBIT OR (soldiers) + BIT (had effect)
11 WHITBREAD WHIT(e) BREAD ie not wholemeal. The Whitbread Prize, now called the Costa prize
12 LES (ta)LES
14/15 ALL MUST HAVE PRIZES (TRUMPS LAVISH ZEAL (d)E(als))*. The 15s are all literary prizes.
20 PULITZER UP rev + LIT + ZER(o).
25 SIR No T(ense) in S(t)IR
26 RELEVANCE A N in (CLEVER)* + (on)E
27 ELGIN L(och) in EG IN
2 RUB RUB(y)
5 WAIT UPON IT UP in (A in NOW) rev
8 FUDGE F replacing B in BUDGE
9 AWOL A + WO(o)L
22 HAREM H + ARE + M
23 HAVOC (A V(igneron)) in HOC(k)
24 DIET TIED with top and bottom swapped
28 GUN Hidden in (feelin)G UN(well)

17 Responses to “Independent 7583 by Phi”

  1. scchua says:

    Thanks flashling for the blog, and, as usual, Phi for another satisfying puzzle.

    Got the theme fairly easily with 22A HAWTHORNDEN and then 20A PULITZER, both with fairly discernable wordplay. Other favourites were 11A WHITBREAD and 22D HAREM.

    Btw, I think that 7D OPERA BUFFAS is (SUPERB A(id)A + OFF)*

  2. flashling says:

    Oops, so do I scchua re 7d, thanks. Will fix it.

  3. Kathryn's Dad says:

    Thank you, flashling, for a helpful blog.

    I don’t know quite what to make of this one. I needed quite a bit of online stuff to finish it, even though I got the theme quite early. I was put off a bit by the gateway clue: okay, it’s a pretty clear anagram and once you’ve got ALL and HAVE it can’t be much else. But what does it mean? Googling leads you to a little known book by Melanie Philips and a quote from Alice in Wonderland. And I’ve never heard it used as a phrase or idiom, so I was a bit disconcerted, thinking I must be missing something (and happen I am). I’d never heard of HAWTHORNDEN so that held me up in that corner.

    Afraid I still don’t understand RELEVANCE. Is ‘clues’ the anagrind? If not, what’s it doing there? If so, I don’t understand how it can be one.

    I don’t normally like spoonerisms, but I did chuckle at TOOODLE PIP.

    So not my favourite Phi ever, and I’m with flashling that this might have sat better as a Saturday offering.

  4. Eileen says:

    Hi K’s D

    I didn’t do this puzzle but caught your comment.

    A few years ago, we did ‘Alice in Wonderland’ as our parish show. I was the Dodo [and I don’t need any witty remarks] and one of my [few] lines was ‘All must have prizes’, so it would have come very readily to me. :-)

  5. Tokyocolin says:

    Thank you Eileen. I couldn’t remember where I had heard that line. Now I can even conjure up an image of the dodo from the picturebook. From a few years ago, yes.

  6. nmsindy says:

    As a bit of a bibliophile, theme here was up my street – the breakthrough being GONCOURT. Still a fairly difficult puzzle by Phi standards, and my last two entries the intersecting SWEAR OFF and WAIT UPON (my favourite clue today) took about half as much time as the rest of the puzzle. Thanks, flashling, for the blog and Phi for the puzzle.

  7. Kathryn's Dad says:

    Thanks, Eileen. I’m very tempted to do a poor attempt at wit, but I’ll refrain on this occasion. For those that have 20p to spare and access to a newsagent, there’s a very good prize puzzle from Phi in the Independent ‘i’ today. If rumours are true, I’ll be solving it again in the main paper soon, but since I’ve got a goldfish memory, that probably won’t matter.

    I’m still interested in what the clue is about, and Phi is asleep.

  8. Eileen says:

    Hi Tokyocolin

    I couldn’t remember the name of the race before but it’s all here:

  9. Wanderer says:

    Excellent puzzle, excellent blog. Thanks flashling and Phi. Held myself up by spelling EXTRAVERT as EXTROVERT (a rover seemed a reasonable party animal) which delayed me from getting the central anagram for a while. Even after that fell, it still took time to see what kind of prizes we were looking for. Got there via ORANGE (from the crossing letters I was trying to justify BRONZE there for a time) after which it fell into place quite quickly.

    I didn’t attempt Crosophile on Monday, but all the subsequent crosswords this week in The Indy seemed to me to set an amazingly high standard. Thanks to Eimi, Dac, Punk and Phi.

  10. Lenny says:

    I was going to say that I found this ridiculously easy but, in view of other comments, perhaps I had better not. I got the key phrase immediately although I remembered it as “All shall have prizes” so I had to work through the anagram to get the Must. After that it was all plain sailing apart from initially entering Dail as the parliament starting with a D.
    There were rather too many obvious anagrams in this for my taste. I think I made the same comment about last Friday’s Phi. It looks as though my membership of the Phi fan club is about to expire.
    I didn’t much care for opera buffas as a plural for opera buffa but I see that Collins prefers it to opere buffe so I can’t complain
    I read 26 as a semi-&lit meaning that clever clues are relevant ones. And yes, clues does appear to be the anagrind.

  11. Tokyocolin says:

    To Eileen @8, that is all very nice but it has no pictures! Try this link:

    The picture of Alice and the dodo at the foot of the “tail” is the one that popped into my mind’s eye when you mentioned the dodo. It would not be so surprising if the arrival of grandchildren was to prompt that memory, but who would expect it from a weekday crossword.

  12. ele says:

    Thanks flashling for explaining the wordplay to Pulitzer. Got hung up on Pooter as the literary nobody and although the answer was obvious couldn’t see how you got at it.

  13. sidey says:

    I find a very odd thing about the Alice books, every time I read them I’m almost sure I’ve never read them before even though I can recite lots of bits by heart. It’s rather good fun.

  14. Phi says:

    I was reading something Carroll-related and ‘All must have prizes’ popped into my mind, and I took it as a way of getting an entry into a themed puzzle. I thought it was reasonably well-known – certainly I’d seen it used in conjunction with articles bemoaning school standards (you know the sort of thing: ‘failure’ rebranded as ‘deferred success’).

    I rarely worry about the number of anagrams in a puzzle (indeed, knowing there’s a limit is a useful solving ploy, so I like to ensure you can’t rely on me for that!). The original meaning of ‘clue’ was a ball of thread (as used in a labyrinth), and so one of the meanings of ‘clue’ is ‘to coil up’. Not as common in daily puzzles as elsewhere, perhaps, but I’d like to help people graduate from one to the other.

    The i puzzles, I’m told (I’ve only seen one – odd that the ultra-new paper doesn’t seem to have much of a web presence, though its title is a bit of a bummer to Google), are some of my old puzzles from around 2006.

  15. flashling says:

    I get home and find a welcome comment from Phi, feel honoured. :-)Still glad I blogged it and thanks all for the comments – like lenny I thought it was shall rather than must, old age obviously clouding my memory.

  16. Wil Ransome says:

    Enjoyed this, nice theme. Although Phi has perhaps justified the use of ‘clues’ as an anagrind I’m not convinced: the historical meaning of the word has surely fallen completely out of use. Had never heard of ‘swear off’ or ‘shield-walls’. And wasn’t sure that a zero is a nobody, in 20ac, for the nothing is not the zero but the letter o, isn’t it?

  17. Scarpia says:

    Thanks flashling.
    I thought this was quite tough but a very satisfying solve.It took me a while to get the theme and couldn’t remember the correct wording of the key phrase so had to work it out from the anagram.
    Was going to comment on the plural OPERA BUFFAS but Lenny@10 has answered that for me – I must get a copy of Collins!
    Loved 1 down – I’m a sucker for that kind of clue.
    I’ve come across the clues/anagrind device in barred puzzles and,I think,it has been used by Araucaria.

    Phi,if you’re still around – I’m very much enjoying The Silver Pigs – thanks for that!

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