Never knowingly undersolved.

Financial Times 13,752 / Loroso

Posted by shuchi on July 22nd, 2011


I found this a shade easier than Loroso’s usual to start with but ground to a halt towards the end. 10a, 14a, 20a, 21d took considerable time. The linked clues 17d and 3d would have been tough too if I didn’t have the www a click away. Clever wordplay here and lots to savour, I specially enjoyed 1d and 2d for their disarming deceptiveness.

I’m not 100% convinced about my parsing of 25a and 6d, and look forward to your comments.


1 DOWNPLAY OWN (private) PL (place) in DAY (time)
5 GYPSUM GUM (paste) around SPY (spot)
10 MATZO MAT (coaster) OZ (from Australia), reversed. One of my last answers in, I had expected ‘coaster’ to be the definition. Here’s more on the bread, matzo.
13 HYPER letters from ‘tHeY aPpEaR’
14 CAXTON CATO (Roman statesman Cato the Elder) has restricted i.e. around X (by i.e. multiplied by) N (new). Caxton refers to William Caxton, the first to introduce a printing press into England.
15 TOURACO TOUR (visit) A CO (business). A new bird for me – the pictures show some magnificent colours and crest.
18 RED MIST (OLD-TIMERS – O,L)*. I was trying to jumble the letters [o]LD [t]IMERS for this clue and needed all of the crossings to rethink the fodder.
20 MOD CON MOD (military bosses – Ministry of Defence) CON (against). Mod con = modern convenience.
22 UPSET group (SET) at university = UP-SET
24 ALLOTROPE ALLOT (divide) ROPE (bind together). An allotrope is one of two or more different forms of an element. e.g. Graphite and diamond are allotropes of carbon. The wordplay nudges us towards the answer as allotropes has atoms (i.e. divisions of the element) bound together in different arrangements.
25 HENPECKED HE (man) NECKED (kissed), and tip of proboscis = P. How does ‘P’ get between HE and NECKED?
26 AVISO AV (short for Authorized Version of the bible) IS O (old)
27 NICETY letters from ‘iNdIsCrEeTlY’
28 ACCEPTED ACTED (worked) around CEP (mushroom, of 8D). Cep is the edible Boletus edulis. The definition is “in”.


1 DUMBLY MB (storage unit for computer memory) in DULY (correctly)
2 WITHSTAND WIND (strong breeze) around (THATS)* – ‘weather’ as in endure.
3 PROPERTY IS THEFT Replacing the linked answers into the clue – “Claim of Proudhon accepted yet this worried us”. The wordplay is PROPER (accepted) (YET THIS)* FT (us i.e. the paper). Proudhon coined this slogan in his book What Is Property? or, An Inquiry into the Principle of Right and of Government. // Updated, thanks to Anon at comment#2.
4 ARRAIGN sounds like ‘a reign’ (what monarch has)
6 YOU SHOULDN’T HAVE dd. Used to mean “Thanks” (19d). The second definition refers to “Property is theft” (3d), i.e. you shouldn’t have (it). A rare case when the pronoun “YOU” appears in the grid.
7 SCOOP S (small) CO-OP (grocery store)
8 MUSHROOM MUSH (mouth, as in chew) ROOM (capacity). A classic Loroso clue in which every word stands for its hardly obvious meaning.
9 SPIGOT GO (energy) in SPIT (double i.e. exact likeness)
16 APOLOGIST A POLO (sport) GIST (significance)
17 PROUDHON PROUD (immodest) HON (love, as term of endearment). Pierre-Joseph Proudhon is the socialist in question.
19 THANKS The actor is T. Hanks, who famously got cast in his debut film for his “nice guy” looks. The director of Splash Brian Grazier has been quoted as – “We read hundreds of people for the part and other people were funnier than him. But they weren’t as likable as him. I felt like I could live inside of him. I felt like his problems were problems I could relate to.”
20 MELODIC M (male) ELO (rock band – Electric Light Orchestra) DIC[e] (game, not quite)
21 BEYOND YON (that) in BED (sack)
23 SONIC SO NIC[e] (very good, without base). Sonic boom is the sound associated with shock waves created by the supersonic flight of an aircraft.

17 Responses to “Financial Times 13,752 / Loroso”

  1. Emma says:

    I couldn’t finish this, so have some concerns:

    1) Is the ‘from’ in 10A mere padding? If yes, it is pretty misleading and unfair.

    2) Is AVISO=information well-known? I haven’t heard of it at all. AV=bible is also a difficult substitute.

    3) I still don’t get the anno for 22A – UPSET. How do we get P and how to place SET after UP?

  2. Anon says:

    In 3d, should the clue not read “Claim of Proudhon accepted yet this worried us” ? (There is no “had”)

    That would give PROPER (YET THIS)* FT (us, as the paper) ?

    Sorry to be a pedantic 1st-time poster…

  3. Conrad Cork says:

    Thanks schuchi. And Loroso, let me say I am 11, and feel that it is now generally 28 that you are 21 compare.

  4. Jezza says:

    re your third question – ‘up’ means at university, so the ‘group at university’ could be described as (the) up set.

  5. MikeC says:

    Thanks Shuchi and Loroso. Very enjoyable – but I needed “aids” to get the SE corner.

  6. crypticsue says:

    Just as I thought I was on Loroso’s wavelength, parts of today’s puzzle convinced me that probably I am not. Some excellent clues once the old grey matter woke up and I worked out what he was on about. Thanks schuchi for the explanations.

  7. Richard C says:

    Thanks for the blog shuchi.

    I must admit I couldn’t finish this. The SE corner defeated me. I found this crossword a lot of pain and little pleasure. 19dn was the only clue which made me smile, and I liked 20dn. I thought the ‘X’ in 14, ‘hon’ in 17, and ‘yon’ in 21 were pretty harsh, and there were too many other overstretched similies for my liking. ‘Up’ = ‘at University’ is also a pet hate of mine, as it is such an archiac cyrptic crossword cliche.

  8. shuchi says:


    1) I rechecked Oz – Chambers lists it as ‘also adj.’, so perhaps Oz = ‘from Australia’. I don’t think it’s commonly used in that sense though. Ozzie is the term I’ve heard more. I had difficulty with this clue too.

    2) I’ve seen AV = bible before, but AVISO was new to me.

    3) UP = at university. I read it the way Jezza explains lucidly at comment#4.

    @Anon: Welcome here, and you’re right about 3d. Will correct the annotation.

  9. Thomas99 says:

    Richard C (7)-
    Up = at university is archaic?? Not round my way it isn’t. And I’m a relatively young solver/commenter, I think. I’m pretty sure students still use it, along with “sent down” and other related phrases.

  10. Alberich says:

    Excellent puzzle as always from Loroso. I can’t see either how the P gets inside in 25. Loroso is always fair so either I’m missing something obvious or a word got omitted at the printing stage. I particularly liked the clues for WITHSTAND and MUSHROOM.

  11. Eileen says:

    crptic sue’s comment echoed my thoughts exactly! :-(

    But it’s reassuring to know that even Alberich is perplexed re 25ac. I only got as far as kissed’ = ‘pecked’ with n[ose] as ‘tip of proboscis’ but that wouldn’t be fair and it doesn’r work, anyway. At least Loroso is one of those setters who do drop by to enlighten ue – please!

    Many thanks, shuchi, for an excellent blog, and Loroso for yet another strenuous workout.

  12. anax says:

    Good evening all, thanks to you and to the lovely Shuchi for a super blog.

    Ah, 25a; ultimately my fault although I didn’t know. The error (for that is what it is) derives from the fact that my original clue was rather naughty: Bullied man kissed tip of private parts (9) – there we have ‘tip of private’ and ‘parts’ for the inserticator. It’s been edited to just ‘proboscis’ and as a result the insertion has hit the studio floor – sadly I didn’t know about the change to the clue.

    That’ll learn me. Mouth/soap interface beckons.

  13. Richard C says:

    anax. Thanks for sharing the story! How amusing. I think it is quite funny that you got “Property is theft” into the FT of all places, by the way.

  14. Sil van den Hoek says:

    Today we left Bonxie on the shelf, and instead tackled this Loroso.
    I gave my PinC the choice, and she was clear enough.
    Dear Loroso, you have won a new admirer today ! :)

    This was a cracking solve with some clues cleverly interwoven.
    Of course, we didn’t understand HENPECKED (25ac) – and yes, we made one mistake: CAXTON (14ac). We saw it as “Roman (R?) (that a) statesman (CATO) has restricted by (‘next to’) new (N)”, which led us to CARTON. That’s not a printer, I know (would be Canon :)), but you’ll never know with Loroso when there is a paper connection.

    Clues we liked a lot were the concise, very precisely formulated and sometimes nicely misdirecting 1ac (DOWNPLAY), 20ac (MOD CON), 2d (WITHSTAND) and 4d (ARRAIGN) [in which has/heard had to be unlinked].

    Thank you shuchi for today’s effort.
    I tend to agree that it probably was ‘a shade easier than usual’, but that didn’t affect the quality at all.
    Sometimes I ask myself why I find Loroso (even) better than Anax. Maybe because it’s the FT, he eases a bit down.
    The fact that Lorosos are in general slightly more accessible makes them for me all the more appealing.

    And appealing it was!

  15. anax says:

    Hi Sil

    Thank you!!! Another admirer eh? Tell you what, there’s going to be one hell of a party when I reach double figures :)

  16. Alberich says:

    Thanks for the explanation, Anax. I’m glad it wasn’t just me being stupid. The original version is excellent, but if not quite suitable for FT it would go down well at Private Eye. Worth keeping in storage anyway.

  17. flashling says:

    Failed on three damn it, spent ages on henpecked so obviously right yet wrong…
    Glad I was blogging Phi not you. Cheers for the fun Loroso

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