Never knowingly undersolved.

Guardian Quiptic N° 653, by Arachne

Posted by PeterO on May 21st, 2012


Apologies for the late blog; I failed to note it was my turn until the last minute.
Arachne here is mostly on her best behaviour, as befits a Quiptic; but, to switch arachnids, there is a sting in the tail in 18D in particular.

1. Further loan (7)
ADVANCE Double definition.
5. Mince pie and preserve for someone who likes fine food (7)
EPICURE A charade of EPI, an anagram (‘mince’) of ‘pie’ + CURE (‘preserve’).
10. Hitch front of sleigh to horse (4)
SNAG A charade of S (‘front of Sled’) + NAG (‘horse’).
11. Leading British artist puts on clean shirt (3-7)
PRE-EMINENT An envelope (‘puts on’) of EMIN (‘British artist’) in PREEN (‘clean’) + T (‘shirt’).
12. Compete with retired woman in European city (6)
VIENNA A charade of VIE (‘compete’) + NNA, a reversal (‘retired’) of ANN (‘woman’).
13,17. How to start a story or, alternatively, continue a poem (4,4,1,4)
ONCE UPON A TIME An anagram (‘alternatively’) of ‘continue a poem’.
14. Photograph loch in peace (9)
STILLNESS A charade of STILL (‘photograph’) + NESS (‘loch’).
16. Mo and Jo initially full of uncertainty (5)
JIFFY A charade of J (‘Jo initially’) + IFFY (‘full of uncertainty’).
17. See 13
See 13
19. Scorns wet, precarious vantage point (5,4)
CROWS NEST An anagram (‘precarious’) of ‘scorns wet’.
23. Penny and Jenny, perhaps opening official document (8)
PASSPORT A charade of P (‘penny’) + ASS (‘Jenny, perhaps’) + PORT (‘opening’).
24. Refer to illness, setback which makes one sick (6)
EMETIC A reversal (‘setback’) of CITE (‘refer to’) + ME (myalgic encephalomyelitis, chronic fatigue syndrome, ‘illness'; not the best known abbreviation).
26. Saying casually uttered everywhere (10)
THROUGHOUT A homophone (‘saying’) of THREW OUT (‘casually uttered’).
27. Avoid lying around in a lazy way (4)
IDLY An anaswer hidden in ‘avoID LYing’.
28. Showed doctor he’s rude (7)
USHERED An anagram (‘doctor’) of ‘hes rude’.
29. Famous people‘s feet? (7)
LEGENDS Definition and cryptic definition (or pun, if you like)- LEG ENDS (‘feet’).
2. One may dread appointment with him but oddly does not miss it (7)
DENTIST Alternate letters (‘oddly’) of ‘DoEs NoT mIsS iT‘.
3. Gas and air essentially lacking, mostly used up (5)
ARGON A charade of A[i]R (‘air essentially lacking’) + GON[e] (‘mostly used up’).
4. Hook perhaps likely to be concealed by murderer (7)
CAPTAIN An envelope (‘to be concealed by’) of APT (‘likely’) in CAIN (‘murderer’).
6. Mop up top quality cider residue (6)
POMACE A charade of POM, a reversal (‘up’ in a down clue) of ‘mop’ + ACE (‘top quality’).
7. No truce in struggle to become Roman army officer (9)
CENTURION An anagram (‘struggle’) of ‘no truce in’.
8. Drummer very loudly put phone down (4,3)
RING OFF A charade of RINGO (‘drummer’) + FF (fortissimo, ‘very loudly’.
9. Runs into Victoria, perhaps, after ace show (13)
DEMONSTRATION A charade of DEMON (‘ace’) + an envelope (‘into’) of R (‘runs’) in STATION (‘Victoria, perhaps’).
15. Oilmen set to blow up sedimentary rock (9)
LIMESTONE An anagram (‘to blow up’) of ‘oilmen set’.
18. Lectures on long division to unruly class (7)
TEACHES An envelope (‘division’) of ACHE (‘long’) in TES, an anagram (‘unruly’) of SET (‘class’). The derived anagram is a little naughty, I feel; it is a reversal, but ‘unruly’ surely ushers in an anagram. Anyway, it nearly escaped me.
20. Take part in combat with others on outskirts of Liege (7)
WRESTLE A charade of W (‘with’) + REST (‘others’) + LE (‘outskirts of LiegE‘).
21. Good, good man gets slain (7)
SKILLED A charade of S (saint; st is a more common abbreviation, by s is an alternative. ‘good man’) + KILLED (‘slain’).
22. Startle horse hiding in tree trunk! (6)
BOGGLE An envelope (‘hiding in’) of GG (‘horse’) in BOLE (‘tree trunk’).
25. Expat’s stripped, sexy and oiled (5)
EXILE [s]EX[y] + [o]ILE[d] ‘stripped’.

10 Responses to “Guardian Quiptic N° 653, by Arachne”

  1. crypticsue says:

    Great fun as ever, thank you Arachne and Peter too.

  2. Arachne says:

    Many thanks, Peter, for the excellent blog. Calibration of Quips is ongoing, so your comments are really useful!

    Thanks, too, to crypticsue for kind words.

    Now back to CLR James to try to work out a subversive Trotskyite strategy, Windies for the use of.

    Love & hugs,
    Arachne x

  3. Kathryn's Dad says:

    I’ve never known Arachne be on anything other than best behaviour, Peter …

    I did find bits of this tough for a Quiptic level puzzle, especially TEACHES and EXILE; but there were some lovely surface readings as well.

    Thanks for the blog.

  4. Derek Lazenby says:

    The class dummy had to cheat the last few and make heavy use of gadgets. Was it just me that had evidence that this was a tad tricky for a Quiptic? I refer the honourable lady/gentleman to the blog for 18, last sentence.

  5. Arachne says:

    Thanks (again) for comments, chaps. Just working on another Quip. so am particularly mindful of and grateful for your opinions. The Quiptic is particularly close to my heart and I particularly want to get it right, so your input is vital.

    Arachne x

  6. Donna says:

    This was such a delightful puzzle! Thank you, Arachne! I’m rather new to solving British cryptic crosswords and sometimes I have a little trouble with some of the expressions. Why is a horse called a “GG?” I have a Chambers Dictionary but couldn’t find it there. I loved the clue at 29 Across which I should have gotten the answer to but didn’t! When I just looked at it I really kicked myself! So clever! Anyway, thanks again from here in New Jersey!

  7. Gaufrid says:

    Hi Donna
    I think this is the first time you have posted a comment so welcome to 15².

    To go from ‘horse’ to GG actually takes two steps if you are using Chambers which gives “gee-gee – a child’s word for a horse” and “gee – the seventh letter of the modern English alphabet (G or g)”.

  8. Donna says:

    Dear Gaufrid,
    Thank you for the welcome and the explanation of “GG.” I was looking up “G” not “Gee,” which is why I couldn’t find it! A few weeks ago I tried the Quiptic by Moley but instead of spelling the answer word to a clue “MEAGRE” I used the American spelling, “MEAGER!” It drove me crazy because I couldn’t complete the puzzle and I’d been doing pretty well up to that point! I really have to remember to put my British hat on when solving these puzzles. It’s been great fun, though. Tomorrow I get my weekly American cryptic fix from “The Nation” magazine which comes out every Thursday in the US. I do wish cryptics would catch on more here. Thanks again!

  9. PeterO says:

    Donna – may I add my welcome to you. I have done a little digging on gee-gee, and the consensus seems to be much as I thought: gee-gee as a reduplication of gee, which hails from the expression “gee up” to urge a horse to go faster, and in turn from giddyup, or get ye up.

  10. Donna says:

    Dear PeterO,
    Thank you for the welcome and additional information on “gee.” In American crosswords “gee” is sometimes clued as to have a horse turn right and “haw” is to have him turn left.

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