Never knowingly undersolved.

Enigmatic Variations 995 by Owzat

Posted by twencelas on December 10th, 2011


This week – straight clues, 5 unclued entries and elements from a quotation around the circumference.  Sounds quite easy for an EV?

And so it proved to be. Relatively simple clues (for an EV) with even the more obscure words well sign-posted.

Then for the unclued entries 4 down and 28 down gave the author THOMAS CARLYLE. and 1down, 5 down, 10 down – THREE GREAT ELEMENTS referring to a quotation from Thomas Carlyle in the Oxford dictionary of Quotations.

“The three great elements of modern civilization, gunpowder, printing, and the Protestant religion”

And what did the circumference yield then – GUNPOWDER, PRINTING, PROTESTANT RELIGION and MODERN CIVILISATION.

Simple as that. Thanks to Owzat for a nice neat puzzle. A nice  one for any one considering trying these advanced cryptics for the first time.

I wonder what he would say they were if he were writing today. Perhaps a song by Abba?


Rev – Reverse

DD Double definition

* Anagram


11 Hols I fancy near hot biblical city (6)

(hols + I + h)* = SHILOH

12 Regrets expressed for jumpers (4)

Homonym (Rues – regrets) = ROOS

14 Women aid a cub (5)

W (women) + help (aid) = WHELP

15 I clear part of the eye (4)

I + rid (clear) = IRID

16 Disheartened Midlands soccer team in misfortune (4)

Wolves (midlands football team) – middle = WOES

17 Broadcaster in jug after commotion one’s forgotten (7)

Stir (commotion) – I (one) + ewer (jug) = STREWER

18 Sheila’s mad about piece on one protozoan (10)

(Sheila)* about man (piece) + i (one) = LEISHMANIA

21 Vintage car down under not starting (5)

Holden (australian make of car) – h = OLDEN

22 Fox TV’s latest: heartless 9/11 recalled (5)

V (tv’s latest) + rev (ne (heartess nine) + xi (11)) = VIXEN

23 Heaved tumultuously from ecstasy drugs after partying (6)

(e + drugs)* = SURGED

24 Granted money from Estonia (4)


27 Beast often depicted in Worcester porcelain (3)

Hidden trice in wORCester and pORCelain

28 Homer’s body of writing half forgotten (3)

Corpus (Body of writing) – pus= COR

29 Could be titters in pieces such as these (7)

(titters)* = STRETTI

31 Description of War — that’s deplorable and anonymous (7)

Crime (deplorable) + an (anonymous) = CRIMEAN

32 Seaman’s muscles (3)


33 A quiet wood (3)

A + sh (quiet) = ASH

35 Daughter, passed over by mum’s boy in retreat, shows agreement (4)

D in rev (son) = NODS

37 Fine enthralling bible books can be arousing (6)

Eric (fine) around ot (old testament) = EROTIC

40 Rock musician’s carefully planned undercover operation (5)


41 Ridge shown by cartographer (5)

Hidden cartogRAPHEr = RAPHE

46 Paper cart reversed around street for boss of goods area (10, hyphenated)

Rev (Dray – cart + ream (paper)) around st (street) = YARDMASTER

47 Golfer behind sand, and hidden in hollow, drives off (7)

Dip (hollow) around s (sand) + Els (golfer as in Ernie) = DISPELS

48 Cheese crackers put around after last of entree (4)

Rev ((Mad – crackers) + e) = EDAM

49 Enthusiastic about Italy? Suspect not (4)

I (Italy) + (not)* = INTO

50 Nothing for piano in pop Western (5)

Pater (pop) replace p with o = OATER

51 See a change price to fall slightly (4)

(see a)* = EASE

52 Plane’s engine jam somehow tackled by engineers on time (6)

(jam + re)* + t (time) = RAMJET



2 Veteran, note seen in Lord’s ground (7)

(lords)* around te (note) = OLDSTER

3 Found one wench from no place earlier (8)

(one wench)* = NOWHENCE

6 Searching for what is wrong in eggy drink (6)

Sin (wrong) in nog (eggy drink) = NOSING

7 Mineral water’s first to be drunk over in Perth (4)

Ore (mineral) around w (water’s first) = OWRE

8 Reported red mark from cane, an instrument of torture once (5)

Homonym (Weal – red mark) = WHEEL

9 What’s done about whiskey. Made a little watery (5)

Deed (what’s done) about w (whiskey – phonetic) = DEWED

13 Figures going around about Russian religious teacher (7)

Stats (figures) about re (about) = STARETS

19 Flipping schedule managed about right for reporter (8)

Rev (Rota – schedule _ ran (managed) about r (right)) = NARRATOR

20 Curve with a cross I do fancy (5)

A + x (cross) + (ido)* = AXOID

25 Call up about hospital rules of behaviour (5)

Rev(cite – call) about h (hospital) = ETHIC

26 Slav in crumpled raincoat (8)

(raincoat) = CROATIAN

30 Fellow from Jamaica in battered catamaran’s about to get lost (8)

(catamaran – c (about))* = RASTAMAN

34 Hush! Many eastern countries holding mass with choral odes (7)

St (hush) + asia (eastern countries) about m (mass) = STASIMA

36 NATO central command’s plan (5)

DD = SHAPE (Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe)

38 Stomach’s upset alas after starters of oyster and mushroom (6)

O + m (starts of oysters and mushrooms) + (alas)* = OMASAL

39 Firm market gives Will’sagreement (6)

Co (firm) + mart (market) = COMART

42 Sauce is nuisance on ring (5)

Pest (nuisance) + o = PESTO

43 Stranger in ramble taking day off (5)

Dodder (ramble) – d (day) = ODDER

44 Charges around Thailand for holidays (5)

Fees (charges) about t (Thailand) = FETES (Holidays)

45 Composer who’s second grade therefore cut (4)

B (second grade) + ergo (therefore) – o (cut) = BERG

4 Responses to “Enigmatic Variations 995 by Owzat”

  1. crypticsue says:

    Yes it was easy for an EV – I should know – despite over 40 years of crossword solving, I am relatively new to the world of EV and this is only the second one I ever finished! I did enjoy it though, thank you Owzat and to twencelas tool.

  2. Wil Ransome says:

    Very nice puzzle I thought. Instead of rather unexciting clues and a long and tiresome fiddle to get the theme, as is the case with certain barred cryptics, we had extremely good clues and a straighforward accessible theme.

    My only criticism was that he was called Ozwat in the paper.

  3. twencelas says:

    Wil – I agree with your sentiments entirely, sometimes the war of attrition to get to the theme is a little tiresome. The great selling point, to me, of this type of crossword is the ingenuity of the setter to hide things in the completed grid. I ask myself many times, why do many setters insist we trawl through obscure words in Chambers to get there.
    Sue – I would persevere with these, you can never tell the difficulty before you start, but if you get about a dozen clues solved, chances are you’re going to get there in the end.

  4. crypticsue says:

    Thanks for the encouragement – I did look at today’s but….. !!

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