Fifteensquared

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Financial Times 13,664 by Cinephile

Posted by Pete Maclean on April 20th, 2011

Pete Maclean.

Prize puzzle from the Weekend FT of April 9

I was down on Cinephile’s last puzzle in this slot but he makes up for it with this one. I have a beef about 11A (BELARUS) but find several other clues to be rather good: 17A (DESIGNER), 28A (GROWTH), 5D (HOME SECRETARY) and 18D (SPINOZA).

Across
1. RATTLE – double definition
4. CHEMICAL – C (caught) + HEM (border) + I (one) + CAL (state)
9. PRESS – double definition
10, 1. DOMINICAN REPUBLIC – DO (note) + MINI (small) + CAN (container) + PUB (inn) in RELIC (survival)
11. BELARUS – L (left) in BEAR (Russia so called) and US (America). Am I justified in thinking this clue is both rather clever, having a good surface at least, and seriously broken? The wordplay clues BEARLUS, not BELARUS!
14. DISCIPLE – DISC (record) + anagram of LP (long-playing) and IE (that is)
17. DESIGNER – SIGN (symbol) in DEER (animals)
19, 13. SEA LIONS – SEAL (authenticate) + IONS (charged items)
22. ROSSINI – anagram of SON and IRIS
24. AIR SHOT – AI (top class) + SH (don’t talk) in ROT (nonsense). This was the most difficult clue for me as I am not much of a golfer and don’t remember hearing of an air shot before. I understand now it is a shot where the club misses the ball.
25. PITLOCHRY – LOCH (lake) + R (river) in PITY (shame)
27. NORMANDY – NORM (one little boy) + ANDY (another little boy)
28. GROWTH – hidden word

Down
2. TREE-LINED – LI (one pound) in anagram of ENTERED
3. LUSTRE – double definition. “Lustre” can mean a period of 5 years.
5. HOME SECRETARY – ME (me) + SECRET (confidence) in HOARY (the ancient)
6. MANTRAP – MANTRA (holy word repeated) + P (quietly). Have you ever seen a mantrap? I saw some in a museum once. They are among the most frightening things I have ever laid eyes on.
7. CACTI – ACT (function) in CI (Channel Islands)
8. LINGER – LINGER[ie]
10, 12, 26. DISTINGUISHED SERVICE ORDER – DISTINGUISHED (made out) + SERVICE ORDER (instructions for liturgy)
15. EYE SHADOW – YES (consent) with HAD (had) in WOE (trouble) backwards
16. PLUTARCH – anagram of HARP CULT
18. SPINOZA – IN (in) with OZ (Australia) in SPA (watering place)
20. DROP IN – DR (physician) + OPIN[ion] (most of what he says)
21. ARDOUR – homophone (“‘arder”)
23. SATYR – double definition. Satyrs are a sub-family of the family of butterflies called nymphalids.

7 Responses to “Financial Times 13,664 by Cinephile”

  1. Sooz says:

    Thanks, I wasn’t sure about AIR SHOT! I’m happy with BELARUS though – I think “left between Russia (so called)” is fine to give BELAR, in the sense that L comes between the letters of Russia. I like the way it sounds as though he means between Russia and America, when he doesn’t.

  2. Bryan says:

    Many thanks Pete, this was very enjoyable.

    Who could ask for anything more?

  3. Pete Maclean says:

    Sooz, Thanks for your input. I hope to get some more opinions about BELARUS.

    Bryan, Indeed.

  4. Bryan says:

    Pete @ 3

    It’s ages since I did this puzzle but I cannot now recall having had any misgivings about BELARUS.

    Indeed, I did rate this somewhat easier than some of the Prize Puzzles set by Araucaria.

  5. malc95 says:

    Having HORNY (h.w.) at 23d held me up for quite a while!

  6. Declanor says:

    Pete, I quite agree with you on BELARUS. It could have been “… left in Russia …”, but that could have made it too easy.

    AIR SHOT could also be a shot in basketball that completely misses the hoop, but that would not be quite as costly as in golf. When I played golf in Ireland and the UK forty years ago, a clear miss was called a “fresh air shot”; I assume the vernacular has changed. In the US we call it a “whiff”.

  7. Pete Maclean says:

    Declanor, Thanks for the support on BELARUS!

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