Fifteensquared

Never knowingly undersolved.

Financial Times 13,611 / Dante

Posted by Agentzero on February 17th, 2011

Agentzero.

Prize puzzle from the FT of Monday 7 February

Another Monday, another Dante.  As usual, there are some clever cd’s (4 down, 8 down stand out for me) and dd’s (I particularly liked 24 down).

Across
1 SHOULDER SHOULD (ought) ER (hesitation)
5 SHREWD SHREW (spitfire) + D[ay]
9 BREAKS UP dd
10 SPLITS dd
12 AS WAS alternate letters in wArSaW’s AlSo
13 TITLE PAGE TITLE (right) PAGE (servant)
14 NETHER N[ame] + ETHER (number)
16 WRAITHS *(THIS RAW)
19 SEMIPRO *(PROMISE)
21 SVELTE T (square) in *(ELVES)
23 OWNERSHIP *(PRO HE WINS)
25 SWELL dd
26 SAILOR “ABC-man” is a homophone of A[ble] B[odied] SEAMAN
27 DECREASE dd
28 LASTED *(SALTED)
29 CONDENSE CON (swindler) DENSE (slow-witted)
 
Down
1 SUBWAY A cd, I suppose, but a bit too close to a plain definition for me
2 OVERWHELM W (first [in] “watch”) in OVER (too muc) HELM (rudder)
3 LIKES dd Would Uncle Yap call this a “dud”?  Usually a dd involves two senses of the defined word.  Here only one sense of the defined word is involved; the misdirection lies in the use of two senses of one of the definitions.
4 EQUATOR cd
6 HYPHENATE cd
7 ERICA hidden in AmERICAn
8 DISPERSE cd
11 STOW S[outh] (180 degrees) TO W[est] (270 degrees)
15 HYPERBOLE *(BE HER PLOY)
17 TITHE BARN THE BAR (advocates) in TIN (money)
18 ESPOUSAL dd
20 OOHS SHOO (drive away) reversed
21 SUPREMO SUP (drink) + *(MORE) I was confused at first by the word “starts”, but I think it just indicates that SUP is the first half of the wordplay
22 FLEECE FLEE (run) CE (church)
24 NAILS dd
25 SHRED SH (quiet) RED (embarrassed)

3 Responses to “Financial Times 13,611 / Dante”

  1. bamberger says:

    Got completely becalmed in the North East but only had 14a missing elsewhere. Not for the first time took number as referring to something methematical rather than medical.
    Shrew =spitfire was an unknown, horrified to miss a hidden word.
    I’d be grateful for further explanation of 8d. Sure if you move something you disperse it -but why are you breaking concentration? Maybe I’m concentrating too hard and can’t see the ood for the trees. Thanks

  2. Agentzero says:

    Hi Bamberger

    If it’s any consolation, it took me quite some time to see that 7 down was a hidden word. Since a number of female names fit the pattern (E-I-A) made by the crossing letters, I wondered for a while whether Eliza Doolittle had some secret anti-American sympathies.

    Regarding 8 down: a crowd, for example, is a concentration of people; if the police disperse a crowd, they are moving people in a way that breaks that concentration.

  3. John Newman says:

    I hope I am not too late to ask a couple of questions.

    Why does Shrewd man fly, and espousal mean adoption? Surely you espouse something then either adopt it or not? I put it in because I could see nothing else but with not much conviction.

    I liked this puzzle and I like Dante. I was going to ask why ether means number but I fell for the old trick yet again.

    cheers

    John

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