Fifteensquared

Never knowingly undersolved.

Financial Times 13,795 by Cincinnus

Posted by Pete Maclean on September 22nd, 2011

Pete Maclean.

Prize puzzle from the Weekend FT of September 10

Cincinnus is back with some fine clues in this puzzle. There are, however, aspects of wordplay in two clues (17A and 7D) that I am not crazy about and one definition that is a little rough (1A). My favourites are 13A (MARJORAM), 10A (BRAVE NEW WORLD) and 20D (HERRING).

Across
1. APPOINT – A (a) + P (quiet) + POINT (MOMENT). The cryptic definition here is clever but awkward since “appoint” is transitive while “get the post sorted” is not.
5. ASSESS – ASSES (wazzocks) + S (singular). I had to look up “wazzocks”. I cannot recall ever hearing the word used.
8. GESTATION – EG (say) backwards + STATION (Waterloo?)
9. AD LIB – reverse hidden words
11. OVERT – OVER (in the past) + T (tense)
12. ABYSSINIA – ABYSS (great hole) + IN (in) + I (one) + A[wesome]
13. MARJORAM – MARJOR[ie] (girl that is missing) + AM (before lunch)
15. TISSUE – T[abloids] + ISSUE (publish)
17. REMEDY – REME (soldiers) + D[a]Y (rejecting a 24-hour). Do we like this last part? “24 hour rejecting a” would work well (as does “girl that is missing” in 13) but I hold some reservation about having the rejecting part first.
19. BUCKSHEE – BUCK (male) + SHE (female) + E (energy)
22. COCK-A-HOOP – COCK (put up) + A (a) + HOOP (band)
23. SCREW – double definition
24. NONET – NONE (nobody) + T (time)
25. SPRINGIER – anagram of RESPIRING
26. TETRAD – T[erribl]E + TRAD (jazz)
28. EMERGED – [ter]M in DEGREE (aim of student) reversed

Down
1. ANGLO-AMERICAN – anagram of AN ORGANIC MEAL
2. PASTEUR – PASTE (stick) + UR (primitive)
3. INAPT – anagram of A PINT. “Inept” is more common but “inapt” is also a good word and has a slightly different meaning. Both mean unfit but “inept” carries a connotation of foolishness.
4. TRIMARAN – TRIM (shipshape) + A (area) + RAN (managed)
5. ANNOYS – homophone (“a noise”)
6. SLAPSTICK – PALS (friends) backwards + STICK (put up with)
7. SILENUS – SILE[nt] (mum almost) + [b]US. I had to look up this one: Silenus was the old rustic Greek god of the dance of the wine-press.
10. BRAVE NEW WORLD – anagram of DRAW NOVEL BREW
14. OLD MASTER – double definition
16. CUTPURSE – CUT (share) + PURSE (contract, as with lips)
18. MYCENAE – anagram of ME[r]CENA[r]Y
20. HERRING – [fis]H + ERRING (wrong)
21. MOSSAD – MOS (Missouri’s) + SAD (blue)
23. SINGE – hidden word

3 Responses to “Financial Times 13,795 by Cincinnus”

  1. Sil van den Hoek says:

    Thanks Pete for your blog.

    Of late, I have been very quiet on the Cincinnus front.
    Although I always enjoy his puzzles, I can only say: this one was VSOP – vintage.

    We live in a tick box world which is a world I do not like.
    But here I ticked quite a few ‘boxes’.
    A plus for the great definition of APPOINT (1ac) [I think an employer could get a post sorted by appointing someone, too - or not?], also for the fantastic surfaces of 7d (SILENUS), 15ac (TISSUE) and 3d (INAPT).
    Fine cluing in 11ac (OVERT), 25ac (SPRINGIER) and 18d (MYCENAE) [with its nice device] too.

    Yes, this was a charmer of a crossword, one in which I almost made an amusing mistake.
    Looking at the clue of 10d, I initially thought – being rather careless – it had to be BRAND NEW LOVER …… :)
    Both 23s were my last entries and both not bad at all (despite the violent surface of the across one).

    CUTPURSE (16d) was a new word to me [as was 'wazzocks'], but one’s never too old to learn something.

    Hugely enjoyable puzzle!

    Thanks Pete for the blog. I do share your reservations about the order of things in 17ac and 7d, but as I have seen this so very often I’m immune to it nowadays.

  2. Bamberger says:

    Thanks for the blog. I couldn’t see why 2d was what it was. I was looking for stick =rod . Ur has caught me out again.
    7d was also a look up one.

  3. Wil Ransome says:

    I think ‘appoint’ could be used intransitively, Pete: an interviewing panel might make the statement ‘we are going to appoint in the near future’. Not a pleasant usage and it smacks of blue-sky thinking and reading from the same songsheet, but acceptable in the crossword sense if not the good English one.

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