Never knowingly undersolved.

Financial Times 13,642 / Armonie

Posted by Agentzero on March 15th, 2011


Not a lot of time to blog today, so I don’t have many comments to make.  As always, Armonie’s impeccable clues are incredibly concise, averaging just under five words apiece.  Armonie, thanks for another gem!

1 CATERPILLAR CATER (supply) PILLAR (support)
7 ADO hidden in marADOna
9 TIE-UP I.E. (that is) in TUP (sheep)
10 HOPSCOTCH HOP (spring) SCOTCH (put an end to)
12 NOVEL V[ictor] in NOEL (Christmas)
13 SANDPIT AND (joiner) in SPIT (rain)
15 DIET dd
18 BERG R[oyal] in BEG (request)
20 MARLOWE LOW (quiet) in MARE (filly)
23 AWARE WAR (fighting) in A and E
24 LANDOWNER L[eft] AN (a) DOWNER (sedative)
27 GRIMY GRIM (ghastly) Y (“youth” leader)
28 OAK SOAK (steep) minus the initial S (“first off”)
1 CATTIEST CAT (burglar) TIES (lashes) T (“Tory” leader)
2 TREADING T[ango] READING (lesson)
3 REPEL REP (agent) EL (“the,” Spanish)
4 INHABIT IN (trendy) HABIT (addiction)
5 LIP READ LIP (cheek) + *(DEAR)
8 ON HOLD ON (working) HOLD (judge)
14 PREFERRED P[enny] REFERRED (made mention of)
16 DOWNHILL DOWN (wretched) H[usband] ILL (unlucky)
17 DEFRAYED FRAY (scuffle) in DEED (exploit)
19 GALLOWS G[irl] ALLOWS (owns)
20 MINSTER MINISTER (clergyman) with the central IS replaced by S (“half-hearted”)
21 CARUSO ICARUS (doomed flier) minus the initial I (“loses head”) + O[ld]
22 BARTOK BART. (abbreviation of “baronet”) + OK (fine)
25 ORGAN G[erman] in O[scar] RAN (managed)

8 Responses to “Financial Times 13,642 / Armonie”

  1. Bryan says:

    Many thanks Agentzero

    This was enjoyable although not too challenging.

  2. arthur says:

    In 20 across, equating a mare with a filly seems not quite optimal.

  3. Pogel says:

    Didn’t aid my cause putting in Bird for 18ac. Valid answer apart from the fact it should be Byrd…

  4. bamberger says:

    I made very little headway with this. Too many arts clues for my taste

    1d Is burglar =cat correct? He is a burglar does not equal he is a cat in my mind.
    13a I have heard of “it is spitting outside” but not “look at the spit outside”
    18a& 22d As soon as I saw composer, I knew it was going to be persons I have never heard of and so had little chance.
    20a Ditto for the playwright
    21d Not another musical clue …

  5. Agentzero says:

    Hi Bamberger

    You may have a fair point about CAT. OED and Collins do not support “cat” alone (outside the phrase ‘cat-burglar’) as meaning “burglar.” Maybe it is in Chambers, which I don’t have.

    Regarding 13a, I think certainly “spit” = “rain” as a verb (e.g., “it began to spit’).

  6. Tony Welsh says:

    Thanks, Agentzero. Finished this quite quickly but could not work out the wordplay in 19d because I was convinced that Girl=GAL, and hence was left with only LOWS instead of ALLOWS to explain!

    Nobody mentioned my little peeve, namely AN as a synonym for A in 24a. I suppose it is OK but the words are not interchangeable.

    I agree that CAT is not synonymous with burglar, but it could be argued that it is a _type_ of burglar.

    Favorite clue 21d btw.

    Bamberger, you may not know many playwrights but you should have heard of Christopher Marlowe. Famous not only for being a playwright but also for allegedly being a spy and for being assassinated (I think in an east-end Thames-side tavern) and for possibly writing some or all of Shakespeare’s plays. I am a physicist, so if I were to compare the fields then maybe we could say that Shakespeare is as famous as Newton, and maybe Marlowe would be as famous as Leibnitz. I have found that the setters rarely use obscure people in any field. I more often don’t know a regular word than a proper name.

  7. bamberger says:


    I had to do “As you like it” and “The Crucible” for English Literature O level. Such dreadful experiences have put me off literature for life. How anyone can find either of those two books remotely entertaining is one of life’s mysteries.

  8. nmsindy says:

    Bamberger, I would not rate all literature on two books/plays. I thought AYLI is pretty good, less familiar with the other. Maybe it sounds simplistic but just read what you like reading and IMO it’s worth trying the ‘big names’, you may find you dislike some so will keep away from them but you may like others.

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