Never knowingly undersolved.

Financial Times no.13,829 by BRADMAN

Posted by Ringo on October 20th, 2011


Is the FT getting harder, or am I getting stupider? That’s a rhetorical question. Took me a while to work through this lovely puzzle from the Don, which touches on ornithology, pharmacology, philosophy and one or two things one would sooner not be made to consider over breakfast. Thanks, Bradman.


1. PASTRY  Past [old] + r(ecipe) + (trend)y

4. AKINESIA  Kines [cows] within Asia [China etc] to give a medical term for impaired movement

9. GRILL  G(ood) + rill [flower, stream]

10. SPEARHEAD  Pear [fruit] + he [man] within sad [grave]; lovely surface, this

11. ANGINAL  Gin [stiff drink] within anal [in the bottom... I mean really, Don] to give a term describing various painful conditions

12. TWIDDLE  T(rousers) + widdle [wee, urinate]

13. TEAL  The alternate or ‘regular’ letters of ThEcAlL to give the Eurasian duck Anas crecca

14. MISTRESS  Distress [anguish] with the initial D [500 in Roman numerals] ‘doubled’ to make M [1,ooo in Roman numerals]

17. KILLDEER  Nice double definition: a hunter may want to kill deer, and the killdeer is a North American plover

19. COKE  Double definition: a term for both cocaine and Coca-Cola (this was the last one to in for me, mainly because, going by the OED, it could just as well have been dope)

22. RUSSELL  The name of the mathematician and philosopher Bertrand sounds like rustle [whisper]

24. EXIGENT  Ex [old lover] + I [one] + gent [fellow]

25. PARCHMENT  Ch(urch) men [blokes] within part [piece]

26. PILOT  Pi [pious, religious] + lot [crowd] to give one who might literally be ‘up in the clouds’

27. OPPOSITE  O [zero, love] + (a)pposite 

29. TENDER  Reversal of ruddy [red] + net [cricket practice]: tricky, this, as it really appears to clue rednet rather than tender


1. PAGEANTS  Page [try to get hold of - that is, contact a person's pager] + ants [workers]

2. SLING BACK  Double definition: to sling back an offering would be rather impolite, and a slingback is a kind of shoe

3. ROLAND  Reversal of OR [Other Ranks, soldiers] + land [ground] to give the legendary Frankish hero

5. KEEP TO THE LEFT  Another nice double definition: a political radical might be stubbornly left-wing, and a newcomer to the UK might need reminding that we dtive on the left here

6. NERVINE  Nerve medicine hidden in dinNER VINEgary

7. SPEED  Double definition, alluding to a slang term for amphetamine

8. ADDLED  Add [tot (up)] + led [was first]

10. SELF-INDULGENT  Anagram of fuelling tends to give a term descriptive of the hedonist Epicurus; what a marvellous surface

15. SHOVELLED  Ignore the misdirection of shed in shovelled - this is hovel [shed] within sled [vehicle]

16. TESTATOR  Test [try] + reversal of rota [list] to give one making a will (who might indeed wish to set up a list)

18. LEECHES  (Fou)l + anagram of cheese

20. TROPPO  Reversal of op [opus, work] + port [left] to give a musical term meaning ‘too much’

21. SIMPLE  Double definition, alluding to a generic word for a herb

23. STRAP  St(reet) + rap [kind of music] to give a looped band

3 Responses to “Financial Times no.13,829 by BRADMAN”

  1. Pelham Barton says:

    Thanks Bradman for the puzzle and Ringo for the blog.

    I too found this comparatively hard going but generally satisfying, and finished on 19ac. Lots of very nice clues. I think my favourite must be 15dn for the misdirection with “shed”. I also enjoyed the misdirection at 1dn: for some time I was trying to use “get hold of” as an inclusion indicator.

    14ac: I wrote in DISTRESS, but that required some twisting of the clue: your explanation makes it clear that MISTRESS is the better answer.

    19ac: Not the Don at his best. The two meanings are consecutive definitions under the same headword in my 1998 Chambers and there are so many other words that could have been used in the space.

    28ac: As you imply, the formula used in this clue is often ambiguous. Here TENDER must be the correct answer, because RED NET is not really a proper phrase, and would have to be given as (3,3) if it were.

  2. MikeC says:

    Thanks Bradman and Ringo. Mostly enjoyable. I too hazarded DOPE at 19. The doubling of D to M in 14 was a new device to me – neat!

  3. TonyP says:

    Thank you Ringo for the blog. As usual the Don in one of his disguises is too tough for me.

    2ac – I think you mean ‘kine’ rather than ‘kines’.

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