Never knowingly undersolved.

Independent 7,691/Phi

Posted by Ali on June 10th, 2011


Smashing stuff as ever from Phi. Lovely surfaces and some great anagrams, particularly the &lit. at 6D. Clue of the day for me is 22A, which had one of those ‘ah, very good’ moments!

1 IMPEL – 1 M(illion) + PEL[-t]
9 CLOWDER – C[-at] + [-brindle]D in LOWER
10 CHIPPER – Double def.
12 IBSENIAN – INES rev. in 1 BAN
14 POGROM – OGR[-e] in POM
17 ON EDGE – ONE + DOGE less [-silvi]O
18 MANDATES – MAN (staff) + DATES (appointments)
22 PILLAGE – 1 L(ength) in PLAGE (Nice beach!)
23 SHEBANG – SHE (woman) + BAN (put a stop to) + G(ood)
24 DECOLLETE – COL(onel) + LET in DEE
25 OTHER – [-b(ook)]OTHER
1 INCOGNITO – In (fashionable) + CO. + (GOT IN)*
3 LEDGE – Hidden in filLED, GEnerally
4 WORLD WAR – L(iberal) D(emocrat) in RAW ROW rev.
5 FACILE – CA rev in FILE
6 RAIN CLOUD – (I CAN LOUR)* over D(ay) – &lit.
7 HIPPOCRATIC OATH – Cryptic def.
8 NERYS – Hidden in wiNERY Sozzled
13 NIGHTFALL – NIGH + f(ine) in TALL
19 BIREME – IRE over ME, supporting B(ritish)
20 MOPED – Double def.
21 CORED – CREDO with 0 (love) moved to the end

13 Responses to “Independent 7,691/Phi”

  1. Pelham Barton says:

    Thanks Phi for the crossword and Ali for the blog. In 21dn, I think you have the answer (CREDO) and the intermediate step (CORED) the wrong way round.

  2. superkiwigirl says:

    Many thanks for the blog, Ali, and for a very enjoyable solve, Phi.

    I got a different answer for 5d, however: defn FICKLE = Unreliable (FI.. LE about CK (future rising barrister, KC, because there won’t be any of these until Britain has a king)).

    My new words of the day were CLOWDER and BIREME – not ones I’ve come across before, but they had to be thus on the wording of the clues and sure enough they could be googled later – which reminds me, I must now buy myself a Chambers!

  3. superkiwigirl says:

    Yes, I’ve just spotted CREDO too, and agree with PB.

    Also, whilst I got HIPPOCRATIC OATH and can see it’s medical relevance and that it’s not for the patients to take, I forgot to ask about the significance of the word “quantity” here – what am I missing please in reading this clue?

  4. Pelham Barton says:

    superkiwigirl @2: And I agree with you about 5dn. I cannot account for “quantity” in 7dn either.

  5. nmsindy says:

    I enjoyed this too, favourite clues, WORLD WAR, MOPED, and, as you mention, RAIN-CLOUD. Thanks Phi and Ali. CLOWDER was new to me too, but, if memory serves, Phi is pretty expertly knowledgeable about cats for some reason.

  6. Kathryn's Dad says:

    Thanks for blogging, Ali.

    A fine puzzle from Phi, which I completed reasonably easily but still needed to come here for some final explanations. I thought the reference to bunga bunga in 17ac was very contemporary – if only …

    CLOWDER and BIREME were also new to me, but clearly signposted, and I also liked WAFER-THIN. I too am struggling to understand HIPPOCRATIC OATH, although it was one of my first half-dozen or so entries because of the crossing letters.

  7. Thomas99 says:

    5d is definitely FICKLE – firstly, that’s what they’ve told us in the online version; secondly, there is no sense I know of in which “CA” can mean barrister, or in which “facile” means unreliable, come to that. Just looks like a passing brainstorm on Ali’s part to me.

    7d – Glad everyone seems to have been as puzzled as me. I’m beginning to think it is just a CD – the modern version of the oath is effectively a list (of sentences beginning “I will…”) so it is in that sense a quantity, or rather a number, of similar things (analagous to the quantity of pills implied in the surface?). Also, clutching at straws a bit, I suppose everything is a quantity, unknown or otherwise.

  8. caretman says:

    Agree with the conclusion about FICKLE and the puzzlement over ‘quantity’ in HIPPOCRATIC OATH; it was that word that kept me from putting in the solution for the longest time. I will add an infinitesimally tiny nit about Ali’s description of the solution to 9a: he meant to write that it’s LOWER in CD rather than the other way around. I thought it was a solid and straightforward puzzle from Phi with a lot of smooth surfaces. I really liked WAFER-THIN (and the memories of the wafer-thin mint from Monty Python’s The Meaning of Life) and PEOPLE’S REPUBLIC. I think I may have encountered CLOWDER before, but I needed to confirm it after putting it in. Thanks, Phi, for the fun workout, and to Ali for the blog.

  9. flashling says:

    Glad it’s not just me who didn’t really get 7d.. Thanks Ali + Phi, perhaps Phi might stop by to explain

  10. Paul B says:

    Medical quantity you wouldn’t expect *patients* to take?

    You’d expect this to be an exploitation of a double meaning on ‘quantity’, but I can’t seem to get a meaning for it as ‘code’, or ‘oath’ or anything like that. Perhaps it’s Collins 6, the ‘characteristic of a proposition’ etc, but in truth I am a-strugglin’.

  11. ele says:

    Agree with the comments about 7d – before I got crossing letters I thought 7d might be be something dose. Perhaps Phi will elucidate.

    Clowder was new to me – Oxford webpage says

    ‘The usual word that’s given as the collective term for a group of cats is clowder.’

    I think usual is stretching it a bit. :)

    I too got fickle at 5d – the ‘future barrister’ was very neat. Too many great clues to pick a favourite. Thanks Phi and Ali for the blog.

  12. Phi says:

    Sorry to be so late stopping by.

    As usual in situations like this I fall back on checking the original hoping that the point causing comment is an editorial intervention (I don’t know why I do this, it never is). By the time a puzzle is published I’m usually several weeks further on, and it’s impossible to reconstruct my thought processes for every clue, and I now find ‘quantity’ as curious a choice as some of you do. ‘Item’ would have been far better, and all I can think is that unconsciously I wanted a trisyllable there. (I only suggest that because I have on occasion – not often – found myself editing a clue to improve its rhythm.)

  13. Paul B says:

    You’re not the only one. Plus I hate using ‘of’. It just looks crap.

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