Never knowingly undersolved.

Financial Times 13,764 / Falcon

Posted by shuchi on August 5th, 2011


Most of this felt straightforward and pleasant. There were a few too many proper nouns for my liking but nothing that the wordplay did not help with.

My picks of the day are 14d and 18d for their smooth surfaces and deceptive definitions.


1 CUT OFF CU (copper) TOFF (good sort – British slang for an upper-class person)
4 CONCERTO CONCERT (arrange, verb) O (old)
11 MOTIF MOT (a vehicle test in Britain) IF (provided). Shouldn’t MOT be “vehicle test”, and not “test vehicle” as the clue says?
12 EARN EARN (listener) [reactio]N
13 BIG SPENDER BIG (great) SPENDER (poet – Sir Stephen Harold Spender, 1909–1995, was an English poet)
15 TWOSOME TOME (book) around WOS (Welsh sailor?). I’m not sure how “Welsh sailor” equals WOS.
16 NICOLE CO (commander) in NILE (African river)
19 THRIFT dd; “in the pink” refers to the plant Armeria, also known as “thrift” or “sea pink”.
21 SHANNON SH (quiet) ANN (girl) ON. River Shannon is the longest river in Ireland.
25 SOFA SO FA[r] (to date, unfinished)
27 RECUR RE (about) CUR (aggressive dog)
28 ESTAMINET (TASTE MINE)*. A new word for me, “estaminet” is a small cafe that sells beer or coffee.
29 HITHERTO HIT (knocked) (OTHER)*
30 YEARLY [jul]Y EARLY (too soon)


1 CONFETTI cd. Small bits of coloured paper that people throw in the air at a wedding.
3 FETA F (fine) ETA (character from Greece – the seventh letter of the Greek alphabet). Feta is a brine-cured cheese traditionally made in
5 ORBISON B (book) in ORISON (prayer). Roy Orbison, 1936 –1988, was an American singer-songwriter.
7 RATED RATE (price) D (daughter)
8 OXFORD hidden in ‘bOX FOR Daughter’. I didn’t see the hidden answer till the very end of the puzzle.
9 PLAICE I in PLACE (lodge); plaice is a common name for flatfish.
14 ROTISSERIE (RIOTS)* SERIE[s] (endless row); a rotating spit on which meat is roasted.
17 LANDOWNER L (left) AN (article) DOWNER (depressing experience)
18 INFANTRY IN (home) FAN (supporter) TRY (shot). Foot is short for foot soldiers or the infantry.
20 TRIDENT I’D in TRENT (English river). The third river in this crossword after those from Africa and Ireland.
21 SHINTO [iri]SH[man] INTO (enthusiastic about)
22 STARCH STAR (celebrity) CH[ef]
24 ASCOT A SCOT (Caledonian). An ascot is a neckband or scarf with broad ends.
26 SMEE SEE (learn) around M[ascovy]. Smee is another name for the pintail duck.

2 Responses to “Financial Times 13,764 / Falcon”

  1. Eileen says:

    Thanks for the blog, shuchi. AS you say, a pleasant crossword – thanks, Falcon.

    Re 11: I had the same thought about ‘test vehicle’, then thought, “But people do talk about having their car ‘MOTd'” – and was amazed to find MOT’d in Chambers!

    In 15ac you need to separate W[elsh] and O[rdinary] S[eaman].

  2. mlega says:

    On 15, could OS be Ordinary Seaman?

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