Posted by Uncle Yap on February 14th, 2012
Another cleverly spun web of intrigue and verbal artifice from our Spider Lady.
And of course, today being a special day for romance and lovers, I was expecting to see the theme right down in the heart of the grid. In addition, other sentimental stuff were served. (Friends, fret not, Gaufrid will not be after me as I know this paragraph will appear below the exposed line
Last week, someone alluded to the deficiency of my blog in that I did not type out the clues and described each answer in full and total detail. Each time I have to blog, I race through the puzzle, full of trepidation and anxiety, not just to get the wordplay exactly right but to present the blog in a timely fashion. So, it is stress, stress and stress until I upload. For me to re-type the clues when I expect everybody to have his own puzzle and can read therefrom would be asking to be spoon-fed beyond the normal call of duty. I always try to be as detailed as possible but cannot possibly explain each answer to death, since I do expect a modicum of elementary knowledge of what a cryptic crossword puzzle is all about and that solvers all have a dictionary handy. Love me, love my blog.
1 PICKLE Cha of PICK (flower or the best, the cream) L (left) E (last letter of romance)
4 WALLIS WALLIES (foolish people) minus E (Elizabeth) for Mrs Simpson of the 1936 Edward VIII’s abdication fame. I wonder about Arachne’s use of an abbreviation which does not stand on its own. ER is Elizabeth Regina but E is hardly a legitimate stand-alone abbreviation for Elizabeth.
9 ITEM … exIT seEM …
10 ABERRATION CABER (the pole or timber used in a Scottish tossing game) RATION (quota) minus C (Roman numeral for 100)
11 ENFOLD Ins of FOL (ins of O, love in FL, Florida) in END (death)
12 YOUNG MAN *(GUM ANNOY)
13 LACHRYMAL *(MARY LACHLAN minus A Number)
15 INCH INC (including) H (hand) for 1/12 of a foot. Here again, I pause since Chambers does not support H for hand whereas RH for right-hand is supported.
16 FOND FO (flying officer, airman) ND (no date)
17,16D HEARTS AND FLOWERS *(HARD LASS FOREWENT)
21 HOLY WRIT HOLY (sounds like wholly, all) W (Western) aRtIsTs (alternate letters)
22 STRIPS ST (initial letters of shedding & torrid) RIPS (tears)
24 TELEPHONED *(THEN ELOPED)
25 SUIT dd
26 SARTRE ha
27 VERSES OVER (about) minus O (lost love) last letters of makeS mE & nauseouS
1 PETUNIA P (piano, quietly) *(AUNTIE)
2 CAMPO dd Campo is the name of several rivers in Brazil, Equatorial Guinea and elsewhere; hence flowers. However, I prefer the alternate parsing by sidey@1 that it is the combination of CAM & PO, both rivers (and flowers)
3 LEAP DAY cd for 29th February when ladies are permitted to propose to their male friends
5 ATRIUM ha entrance hall or chief apartment of an ancient Roman house; a church forecourt or vestibule; a central courtyard ; a cavity or entrance ; specif either of the two upper cavities of the heart into which blood passes from the veins.
6 LITIGANTS *(Good LATINIST)
7 STOMACH STOMA (mouth) CH (Companion of Honour) as in He has no desire/stomach for more speeches
8 BE MY VALENTINE BEAMY (radiant) minus A (middle letter, heart) VAL (girl) *(TEEN IN) with barking mad as anagrind
14 HONEY BEAR Spoonerism for BUNNY HAIR (rabbit fur)
18 RUSHDIE Ins of SH (quiet) DI (girl) in RUE (regret) for Sir Ahmed Salman Rushdie, a British Indian novelist and essayist.
19 NAPPIES NAP (sleep) PIES (food)
20 ARCHER SEARCHER (he goes looking) minus SE (points on the compass)
23 ROSES cd &/or dd hip is the fruit of roses and pink is a common colour for roses. Today in Kuala Lumpur, a single rose will cost RM10 (about 2 quid) ten times the normal price … and for that, you have to book in advance.
Key to abbreviations
dd = double definition
dud = duplicate definition
tichy = tongue-in-cheek type
cd = cryptic definition
rev = reversed or reversal
ins = insertion
cha = charade
ha = hidden answer
rha = reversed hidden answer
*(fodder) = anagram