Fifteensquared

Never knowingly undersolved.

Financial Times 13,890 by Cincinnus

Posted by Pete Maclean on January 12th, 2012

Pete Maclean.

Prize puzzle from the Weekend FT of December 31, 2011

I sailed through this puzzle although I had to look up the two battles (11 and 12A) and 25A (KERRY BLUE). And I do not understand 19A (INDIANA?). I think the best clues are 10A (COCKTAILS), 2D (MAIDSTONE), 7D (DRIVE) and 19A (INSTEAD).

Across
1. ADMIRABLE – anagram of BARMAID + L[oos]E
6. MEDIC – M[agistrat]E + CID (police) backwards
9. CHIEF – CH (church) + IE (that is) + F (fine)
10. COCKTAILS – COCK (male) + TAILS (call when tossing, c.f. HEADS)
11. AUSTERLITZ – AUSTE[n] (Jane’s last to go) + L (left) in RITZ (hotel)
12. JENA – anagram of JANE
14. SPOTTED – double definition (one referring to a spotted dick)
15. DROWNED – R (river) in DOWNED (swallowed)
17. WEED OUT – WEE (minor) + homophone (“doubt”)
19. INDIANA – ??? I gather Gary Jones is an actor but I do not see how the wordplay works here. No doubt someone will enlighten me!
20. NICK – double definition
22. EMASCULATE – anagram of MALES A CUTE
25. KERRY BLUE – ERR (stray) in KY (Kentucky) + BLUE (dirty). A Kerry Blue is a type of terrier.
26. NYALA – hidden word
27. THYME – homophone (“time”)
28. REDBRIDGE – DER (German article) backwards + BRIDGE (game)

Down
1. ACCRA – CC (cricket club) in [nic]ARA[gua]
2. MAIDSTONE – anagram of IN A MODEST
3. REFLECTION – L[ettuce] in REFECTION
4. BUCKLED – BUCK (male) + LED (was first)
5. EXCITED – EX (former spouse) + CITED (mentioned)
6. MATE – double definition
7. DRIVE – double definition
8. CASSANDRA – anagram of DANS CAR AS. Cassandra Austen was Jane’s sister. I do not see what “Desperate” is doing in this clue. Is it completely superfluous? It works in the surface reading but I don’t think it adds anything.
13. ROAD RUNNER – RUN (ladder, as in stockings) in anagram of REARDON
14. SEWING KIT – EWING (Dallas character) in SKIT (funny sketch)
16. NYASALAND – AS (as) in NYALA (26, i.e. 26 across) + N (new) + D[ecember]
18. TUMBLER – TUMBLE (cotton) + R (right)
19. INSTEAD – anagram of IT ENDS A
21. CURRY – double definition. This is a clue I have seen before and uses a meaning of ‘curry’ that is good to keep in mind for crosswords.
23. ERASE – ERAS (periods) + [timetabl]E
24. TYNE – hidden word

3 Responses to “Financial Times 13,890 by Cincinnus”

  1. CrazyJ says:

    For 19a, Gary is a city in Indiana (and subject of a song in the musical “The Music Man”). Jones? then points to Indiana Jones.

  2. Wanderer says:

    Much enjoyed the use of JANE in the clues. The first one, 11a, included ’1805 battle’ which misled me into thinking of Trafalgar. Although I didn’t solve it immediately, it put me into Spanish mode so when I got to the next, an anagram of JANE for an 1806 battle, I confidently entered JAEN. (There has indeed been a battle of JAEN, just not in 1806…) And this was cleared up by the next JANE, which led to Cassandra, and which put me straight and took me to an altogether different part of Europe for the first two.

    Other ticks for Male = COCK in cocktails, and Male = BUCK in buckled. And for the crossing and cross-referenced NYALA and NYASALAND.

    A pleasure as always. Thanks to Pete and Cincinnus.

  3. Pete Maclean says:

    Ah, yes, Gary, Indiana! I remember it now. A town south of Chicago if memory serves. And once described to me by a (prejudiced?) Chicagoan friend as a city where one had about equal chances of dying from terminal boredom or multiple gunshot wounds. And then Indiana Jones of course which explains the question mark. Thank you, CrazyJ.

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