Never knowingly undersolved.

Financial Times 13707 Jason

Posted by scchua on May 31st, 2011


This was quite a challenge, partly I think because I’ve not done any or many Jasons.  After some time, though, things came together, and finally had only one iffy answer.  A 4-letter light , which after running through all the possible combinations, I settled on one, but not with 100% certainty.  I’m probably missing something here, since, looking back, all the other clues were fair and non-obscurantist.  Thanks Jason, this was enjoyable and I think I’ll do better on your next one.

PS.  Thanks Gaufrid for covering for me in the next 2 Tuesdays. 


1 Egghead uncle gets involved in a little upset (12)

INTELLECTUAL :  Anagram(upset) of {UNCLE +(gets involved in) A LITTLE}.

10 Fondness, with no little puff, for eulogy (7)

ORATION :  adORATION(fondness) minus(with no) AD(abbrev. of,little advertisement promoting,puffing something or someone).

11 Flying service is perfect, bar getting millions in (7)

AIRMAIL :  AI(perfect) + RAIL(bar, as for a towel, say) around(getting…in) M(millions).  Defn:  Fastest letter-delivering service before e-mail.

12 Saint with attitude, this could get one down (5)

STAIR :  ST(abbrev. for saint) +(with) AIR(attitude,pose,bearing).

13 Vacuous Adonis I heard gets caught with youth initially (3,5)

EYE CANDY :  EYE(homonym(heard) of I) +(gets) C(caught, as in cricket) AND(with) Y(first letter,initially of youth).  Defn:  Person, of either sex, who is pleasing,sweet to the eye but not much else,vacuous.  There’s also arm candy and ear candy.

15 Mad Hatter husband with fleece becomes an idol (10)

HEARTTHROB :  Anagram(mad) of HATTER + H(husband) +(with) ROB(fleece,swindle).

16 Proposal one put before beloved Romeo’s ignored (4)

IDEA :  I(one) put before DEAr(beloved) minus(ignored) R(for Romeo, in the international phonetic alphabet).

18 Fancy one mortal too often (4)

LUST :  I’m not sure about this one.  If I’m right, then fancy = LUST.  I’m even more unsure about the wordplay:  can only speculate that since Lust is one of the deadly sins, it would somehow be related to a mortal sin.  Any correction or confirmation would be appreciated.    

20 Flat outside New Orleans? This’ll inform about one (8,2)

PERSONAL AD :  PAD(flat,apartment commonly of bachelor) around(outside) anagram(New) of ORLEANS.  Defn:  Ads by individuals usually seeking romantic partners, with information given in an abbreviated language of their own, eg. BI, SOH, GSOH, WSF, NS, ND, DDF.

22 Einstein’s resolved twenty-odd (and more) years ago, say (8)

NINETIES :  Anagram(resolved) of EINSTEIN.  Defn:  The 1990s were twenty-odd years ago, and the 1890s, etc. were twenty-odd and more years ago.  I think that’s how to read the “(and more)” bit.

24 Collector somehow keeps “The Venus de Milo”, for example (5)

TORSO :  Hidden(keeps) in collecTOR SOmehow.

26 West, say, sort repackaged as a hotshot (7)

MAESTRO :  MAE(in particular,say, Mae West, actress who, among other distinctions, had the life jacket worn by WWII aircraftsmen nicknamed after her) + anagram(repackaged) of SORT.

        Flight Sergeant, Royal Canadian Air Force, circa 1941-1943

27 Wailing woman forces out the first bit of a mule’s call (7)

BANSHEE :  BANS(forces out,disbars) + HEE(first bit,part of hee-haw,mule’s call).  Defn:  In Irish folklore, a spirit in the form of a wailing woman, who is seen or heard by a family when one of them is about to die.  I doubt if she’ll sound anything like a mule though :-) .

28 Lexicographer is a scholar, chap in epistolatory relations (3,2,7)

MAN OF LETTERS :  MAN OF(chap in) LETTERS(epistolatory,in the form of letters,correspondence).  Defn:  I don’t quite know what to make of the clue construction, as the definitional part seems to be in the middle.  Unless “lexicographer” is meant to be another definition or another wordplay viz. One who writes or compiles or edits a dictionary, ie. a man of words, and since words are made up of letters, also a man of letters?


2 River again flows around Arabia (7)

NIAGARA :  Anagram(flows) of AGAIN around AR(Arabia or strictly speaking, Arabic)  Defn:  The river that feeds its more famous Falls.

3 Permanently leave recording giant over scrape (8)

EMIGRATE :  EMI(originally The Electric and Musical Industries Limited, the giant music recording and publishing company, now owned by Citigroup) +(over, in a down clue) GRATE(scrape, eg.your skin).

4 Nothing up with ordinary floor covering (4)

LINO :  Reversal(up, in a down clue) of NIL(nothing) +(with) O(as in the GCE Ordinary(O) Level Exams, replaced by the GCSE)

5 Sioux leader is distraught over cavalry (5,5)

CRAZY HORSE :  CRAZY(distraught,emotionally distressed) over HORSE(collective word for cavalry,soldiers on horseback, eg. a thousand horse).

6 Some plug richest language (5)

UGRIC :  Hidden(some) in plUG RIChest.

7 Tragic King Edward is widely read (7)

LEARNED :  LEAR(King in Shakespear’s tragedy) + NED(variant of the name Edward).

8 Board carry on standing for a famous person (9,4)

HOUSEHOLD NAME :  HOUSE(verb, to house someone,to provide board and lodging to someone) + HOLD(carry, as with hold the baby) + NAME(standing,reputation,status).

9 Adopt lethargy in new relationship? (4,4,2,3)

PLAY HARD TO GET :  Anagram(new relationship) of ADOPT LETHARGY.  Defn:  Be passive,adopt lethargic attitude in a new relationship.  A fine &lit.  Favourite clue for today.

14 Not at all happy with, say, Lancashire shed (7,3)

CHEESED OFF :  CHEESE(a variety of,say, named after the county, Lancashire, in which it’s produced) + DOFF(shed,remove, as with clothing).

Cheese 31 bg 051906.jpg

17 Isn’t changing directions in Connecticut a gift (8)

INSTINCTChanging N,S(north,south directions) with each other in ISN’T + CT(abbrev. for Connecticut, USA).  Defn:  Something you don’t have to learn consciously.

19 Ray’s succeeded to remove support, fancifully (7)

SUNBEAM :  S(succeeded) + made up word(fancifully) UN(prefix to remove from, as in unseat)-BEAM(support, eg. for floor or roof).

21 One staggering mutt (7)

LURCHER :  Double defn:  1st:  One who lurches,staggers, as when intoxicated.  The archaic meaning of lurcher is one who prowls or lurks.  2nd:  A mutt,crossbred hunting dog,


23 One overlooked Rennaissance painter, a very important person (5)

TITAN :  TITiAN(Renaissance painter) minus(overlooked) I(one).  Defn:  From Greek mythology, extended to mortals to mean one of enormous size, power, strength, influence, and, I guess, importance qualifies, eg. a titan of industry

25 Skilful sailor upset the Spanish (4)

ABLE :  AB(Able-Bodied seaman,sailor) + reversal(upset) of EL(the definite article, the, in Spanish).

7 Responses to “Financial Times 13707 Jason”

  1. mike04 says:

    Many thanks for all your hard work, scchua.

    I had trouble parsing 18 and 28 as well. I’m not sure if I can contribute very much.

    In 18ac, I think you’re right about the definition. Then, I thought it might be read as
    “mortal too, often” referring to the mortal sin.
    In 28ac, I think the clue would be fine if “Lexicographer is” was omitted.

    I’d parse 2dn as a Reversal of AGAIN (rather than an Anagram) around Ar.

  2. deke says:

    I had 18A as LUSH, dd; LUSH = fancy and, apparently, mortal is an old Scots slang term for drunk (short for mortally drunk), so “one mortal too often” would be a lush.

  3. mike04 says:

    Well spotted, deke.

    How did I miss MORTAL? Here in Scotland it’s commonly applied to those well oiled in a pub.
    I’m no LUSH but I’m looking forward to a pint of 80/- in the next hour!

  4. William says:

    Thank you Succhua, could not understand a fair few of my answers without the blog. I had LUST too but couldn’t work out the word play.

    A bit unhappy about 8d – how is the clue supposed to read? It can’t mean board as in ‘put up’ or ‘house’ and if it refers to a board of directors then it’s a singular noun and the clue would have to read “Board carries on…


  5. smiffy says:

    Thanks scchua. I concur that 9D is a highly podium-worthy offering. Plenty of shipshape stuff here; although the wordplay for 1A leaves something to be desired, and there does seem to be an uncontrolled outbreak of EYE CANDY in crosswordland of late (must be one of those coincident/cluster theory things).

    28A: I took this to be a triple def’n.
    3D: I think Citigroup is a somewhat reluctant ‘owner’ of EMI. They are basically carrying the can for having finanaced Guy Hands’ ill-considered venture into the music biz.

    William – I don’t understand the quibble on 8D. It can’t mean board as in ‘put up’ or ‘house’ – why on earth not?

  6. William says:

    Smiffy @5 – simply that if it did mean board in the hotel sense, then how does the sentence work? “Board carry on standing for a famous person” is nonsense. I think Jason meant the board as in directors, but got it wrong as it should be a singular noun.

    As you say, Smiffy, it’s only a quibble of an otherwise good crossword.

  7. scchua says:

    Belated (different time zone and all that) thanks for your contributions. First time I’ve been stumped since I started blogging the Tuesday FTs and every 4th Guardian Quiptic: 18A LUSH – know the “fancy”/”drunk” different meanings, but couldn’t connect with “mortal”.

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