Posted by Pierre on April 16th, 2012
A couple of surprises when I opened up this morning’s puzzle: a new setter, and a theme. I can’t ever remember there being a themed Quiptic before (although there was a hidden message in one a while back) and I’m wondering if it’s appropriate for the Quiptic’s target audience. Anyway, perhaps some of that target audience will say what they think.
The gateway clue is referencing the RMS Titanic, which sank on her maiden voyage 100 years ago yesterday. Personally I’m in Titanic overload at the minute; it seems to have been all over the media for the last month or so. There were some clever surfaces related to the theme, but also a few clues which I didn’t find particularly cryptic. If that’s just me, then apologies to Algol, our new setter (or perhaps an existing setter in disguise?).
There is one clue which appears to be faulty.
dd double definition
cd cryptic definition
anagrind = anagram indicator
[x] letter(s) removed
8 See 12
9 Like seabird behind a boat
A charade of AS for ‘like’ and TERN.
10 Royal Navy?
I think this is referring to the fact that royals are ‘blue-blooded’, and of course navy BLUE is a colour. The question mark just about rescues it, I think.
Edit: Andrew explains this much better at comment no 2.
11 Can’t be holed
Is this cryptic? I’m with Mark Twain on golf, by the way.
12,8 19’s fate, uncharacteristically!
A DROP IN THE OCEAN
Well, clearly this is what happened to the Titanic, but what the ‘uncharacteristically’ is doing, I can’t say. Is it trying to indicate that the Titanic was supposed to be unsinkable?
14 Places in office where 19 aimed to be
INSTATE is a verb meaning to ‘put in office’ (cf RE-INSTATE) and IN STATES is where the Titanic was meant to end up.
15 Scruffy drunk empties pockets
Nicely hidden in drUNK EMPTies.
17 Director of romance at sea?
Referring to James Cameron, director of the Titanic movie. It’s (ROMANCE)* with ‘at sea’ as the anagrind, and is an &lit or ‘all-in-one’ clue, where the whole clue suggests the solution.
20 Dish of shellfish acquiring a central Paris following
Nice surface. The setter’s inviting you to insert A into CLAM and then follow it with ARI, the central letters of ‘Paris’.
22 Show embarrassment in Communist hideout
A simple charade of RED and DEN.
23,16 Plenty had abandoned wreck, yet entertainment continued
AND THE BAND PLAYED ON
Cleverly clued. (PLENTY HAD ABANDONED)* with ‘wreck’ as the anagrind. Referring to the fact that the band on board Titanic did play on while the emergency unfolded. ‘Abide with Me’ if memory serves.
24,6 Complete mix-up, made haste with a call for top speed
FULL STEAM AHEAD
A charade of FULL for ‘complete’ and (MADE HASTE A)* The anagrind is ‘mix-up’ and it’s another themed reference, I suppose.
25 Musical performance by unaccompanied topless escort
Interesting image. A charade of GIG and [S]OLO.
26 Hear my reaction to Halloween trick or treat
Another cleverly put together surface. It’s a homophone (‘hear’) of I SCREAM.
1 Issue with women leaving 19 first
It’s ‘issue’ in the genealogical sense, and a further reference to the disaster.
2 Look out up front
A dd, referring to what golfers shout when they’re teeing off.
3 Elect concerning change of course
A charade of RE and TURN. ‘I do hereby declare that the said Jane Smith has been returned as the member for Piddling-by-the-Sea.’
4 Aristotle shipped in Desdemona’s sister
Hidden in DesdemONAS SISter, and referring to Aristotle ONASSIS, the shipping magnate, although I don’t think he had anything to do with the Titanic.
5 Enigma resolved by a cure for indigestion
Milk of MAGNESIA is a (rather old-fashioned now) cure for dyspepsia, but I think the clue is faulty. The way it reads is (ENIGMA)* plus A with ‘resolved’ as the anagrind. But there’s no S in the anagram fodder, which makes me think that it should have been ‘Enigma’s resolved …’
6 See 24 across
7 Burnt tea, as reported to general
As in crème brûlée. It’s a homophone (‘as reported’) of BREW and General Robert E LEE, the setters’ General of choice because of his helpful surname. And brûler is indeed the French for ‘to burn’.
13 Safeguard wrought iron teacup
(IRON TEACUP)* ‘Wrought’ is the anagrind.
16 See 23
18 Burden after maiden perhaps put on too much weight
A charade of an OVER in cricket where no runs are scored and LOAD, and perhaps another themed reference?
19 It hit an iceberg largely concealed, dropping headfirst
The gateway clue, and to be fair, it’s a giveaway from the definition. It’s hidden in iT [H]IT AN ICeberg. The setter’s asking you to remove the H as the first letter of ‘head’. And it is a good surface.
21 I need a translation of Latin poem
(I NEED A)* for Virgil’s poem.
22 Right part of cow is provided to steer
A charade of R and UDDER. Another clever surface and another nautical reference.
24 Ticket price sounds reasonable
A homophone of FAIR.
Many thanks to Algol – perhaps we’ll see him or her again in the Quiptic slot.