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Guardian Quiptic 591 Moley

Posted by scchua on March 14th, 2011


(Prologue) This is my maiden blog.  I could say “be gentle with me” but I won’t.  All comments are welcome – part and parcel of the learning curve for me.  Commenters during the (UK) night shift and who expect a reply may not get one until the next morning.  Rest assured, I’m not ignoring you, it’s just that that’s when I’m recharging my batteries.  There was some excitement today when we couldn’t locate the puzzle, apparently having been classified as a Cryptic – a sheep in wolf’s clothing.   However, it’s sorted out now, so after about an 11 hour delay, here goes….

Quite straightforward warmup to more difficult ones this week. Thanks Moley.  (I’ve erred on the conservative side, so there might be too much detail.)


1 Demanding rent is infuriating! (9)
MADDENING:   Anagram (indicated by “rent”) of DEMANDING.  Defn: Infuriating.

9 Get the best of wily creature getting away first (6)
OUTFOX:   OUT (“getting away”) before (“first”) + FOX (“wily creature”).  Defn: Get the best of.

10 Agreeable company’s unfortunate leaning (9)
CONGENIAL:   CO (“company”) + Anagram (“unfortunate”) of LEANING.  Defn: Agreeable

11 Stick to edited header (6)
ADHERE:  Anagram (“edited”) of HEADER.  Defn: Stick

12 Entail alteration to stern of oriental ship — that’s vital (9)
ESSENTIAL:  Anagram (“alteration”) of ENTAIL = ENTIAL added to back (“stern”)  of E (“eastern”) + SS (“ship”).  Defn:  Vital.

13 Keep previously cancelled hold on former musical group (6)
SEXTET:  STET (instruction by editors to printers not to change, ie. “keep” the original wordings, etc. of text) placed around (“hold on”) EX (“former”).  Defn.  Musical group of 6 players.  

17 Bounder involved in decadence (3)
CAD:  Hidden in (“involved in”)  “deCADence”.  Defn:  Bounder.

19 Hit back at goddess, no small upstart (7)
PARVENU:  Reverse (“back”) of RAP (“hit”) = PAR + VENU(s) (“goddess, no small”, ie. without S).  Defn:  Upstart.

20 Retain right new way to learn a different skill (7)
RETRAIN:  Anagram (“new”) of RETAIN and R (“right”).  Defn:  Way to learn a different skill.

21 Tree in alcove (3)
BAY:  Double definition meaning “Tree” and “Alcove” respectively.

23 Rogue artist’s state (6)
RASCAL:  RAS (usual crossword abbrev. for “artist” + ‘s) + CAL (“state” of California).  Defn: Rogue.

27 Aspect  to assess for apparent worth (4,5)
FACE VALUE:  FACE (“aspect”) and VALUE (“to assess”).  Defn:  Apparent worth.

28 Asinine sound man uttered initially had a whine (3-3)
HEE-HAW:  HEE (sounds like (“uttered”)  HE (“man”)) + H A W (first letters (“initially”) of “had a whine”).  Defn:  Sound made by donkey/ass (“asinine”)

29 Perhaps adult in another room is a pitch adjuster (9)
MODULATOR:  Anagram (“Perhaps”) of ADULT = DULAT within (“in”) anagram (“another”) of ROOM = MO OR.  Defn:  Pitch adjuster.

30 Goad the French want first (6)
NEEDLE:  NEED (“want”) in front (“first”) of LE (“the” in “French”).  Defn:  Goad.

31 Split seed apart, perhaps (9)
SEPARATED:  Anagram (“perhaps”) of SEED APART.  Defn. Split


2 Alert the USA maybe by importing ore intermittently (6)
AROUSE:  Anagram of USA (“maybe”)  and ORE (“importing intermittently”).  Defn:  Alert

3 Honour rank (6)
DEGREE:  Double definition.

4 Ten in unknown novel of great age (6)
NINETY:  Anagram of TEN IN + Y (“unknown” variable in algebra).  Defn:  Great age.

5 City falls (7)
NIAGARA:  Double definition.  There are actually two Niagara Falls cities, one in Canada and other in USA.

6 Empty head with thunder rolling in one of a large number of equal parts (9)
HUNDREDTH:  Anagram (“rolling”) of HD (“empty head”, ie. without internal letters) and THUNDER.  Defn:  One of a large number (100) of equal parts.

7 Face left, turn and run! That’s working well (9)
EFFECTUAL:  Anagram (“and run”) of FACE and LEFT and U (U-“turn”).  Defn:  Working well.

8 Anticipate worker, excited about what’s coming (9)
EXPECTANT:  EXPECT (“anticipate”) + ANT (“worker”).  Defn:  Excited about what’s coming….baby perhaps?

14 Understand and put under arrest (9)
APPREHEND:  Double definition.

15 New energy, one third depleted, gets a top up (9)
FRESHENER:  FRESH (“new”, not the usual N) + ENER(gy) (“energy, one third depleted”, ie. last 2 out of 6 letters ignored).  Defn:  a top up.

16 Questionable change to a bed on board (9)
DEBATABLE:  Anagram (“change”) of A BED = DEBA “on” TABLE (“board”).  Defn: Questionable.

17 About university’s second-class youngster? (3)
CUB:  C (“about”) + U (“university”) + B (“second-class”, compared to A).  Defn:  Youngster.

18 A farm is lost when farmyard lacks irrigation (3)
DRY:  Defn: Lacks irrigation.  “when FARMYARD” is DRY (“lacks irrigation”) the letters FARMA or its anagram “A farm” are deleted (“lost”).

22 Mariner’s sole seafood? (7)
ABALONE:  AB (“Mariner”, able-bodied seaman) + ALONE (“sole”, not the fish).  Defn:  Seafood, a prized shellfish.

24 Whale with a bulge, perhaps (6)
BELUGA:  Anagram (“perhaps”) of A BULGE.  Defn:  Whale, a species of white.  Not to be confused with the sturgeon of the same name which provides beluga caviar.

25 Bad French ruler in Spanish town (6)
MALAGA:  MAL (“Bad” in “French”) + AGA (a Turkish “ruler”).  Defn:  Name of Spanish town.

26 Warning call outside old city creates a rumpus (6)
FURORE:  FORE (“warning call” used by golfers for others to watch out for their balls) around (“outside”) UR (“old city”).  Defn:  A rumpus.

8 Responses to “Guardian Quiptic 591 Moley”

  1. Eileen says:

    Hi scchua

    As Andrew said to me when I started blogging, ‘Welcome to the dark side’ – and congratulations on your first blog. I reckon you’ve hit the right spot.

    An enjoyable puzzle, I thought, apart from expect / expectant in 8dn, which are rather too close for me.

  2. Andrew says:

    Thanks scchua, and welcome (dark side or not). I agree with Eileen about 8dn, and I would add 9ac and 27ac to the list of clues of this rather unsatisfactory type.

    I wonder if there was a nod to Araucaria’s recent birthday in 4dn.

  3. Robi says:

    Thanks, Moley and scchua for an excellent first blog. I like your putting the clue there as well.

    Either I have now recovered from my grumpy Monday or else this was considerably easier than today’s Monday Rufus – which is as it should be.

    I liked HEE-HAW and PARVENU.

  4. Derek Lazenby says:

    Well, at first I thought this was going to be really difficult, especially with the “grid of 4 quarters”. But it turned out to be easier than I feared once I got going. That in itself is a lesson to beginners, don’t give up too quickly.

    Nice first blog BTW.

  5. Kathryn's Dad says:

    A fine first blog, scchua, with everything well explained.

    Moley usually hits the spot for a Quiptic, and this one was a straightforward but enjoyable solve. I thought 8dn was fine; what is the problem with it?

    MADDENING was my last in, with a very cleverly misleading anagrind.

  6. JohnR says:

    Thanks for the blog, sschua. I’m especially grateful for the explanation of 18d, DRY.

    I could see that that this had to be the answer, but I failed to see why. An elegant clue – I might have got it if this had been a Boatman or Paul puzzle. But in a Quiptic?

    Ah well.

  7. smutchin says:

    Good job on the blog, scchua.

    This was a first for me too – I don’t normally do the Quiptic, but I accidentally downloaded this to my crossword app yesterday instead of the Cryptic.

    I found it most enjoyable – especially the clever wordplay in 1a. I’ll have to do the Quiptic more often.

  8. HelenEdith says:

    My other half accidentally printed me the Quiptic last week and it’s so much more “do-able” than the daily Cryptic that I’ve been won over.

    Thanks for the blog, scchua. I got the answer to 1ac but couldn’t figure out why it was the answer.

    I’m soldiering on with the Guardian Cryptic puzzles as well: the more I do, the more I will improve. I’m starting to wonder why I’m subscribing to the Herald Scotland (whose puzzles are on a level with the Quiptic but unfortunately went subscription-only several months ago, hence the need to subscribe) when I seem to be taking up all my solving time on Guardian puzzles and not filling in the ones I’m paying for!

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