Fifteensquared

Never knowingly undersolved.

Financial Times 14,029 by Loroso

Posted by PeeDee on June 13th, 2012

PeeDee.

My apologies for the late posting, by some strange human/computer malfunction that I have still not fathomed I managed to delete the entire blog just before posting and had to start again from scratch.

Loroso has delivered an excellent crossword here, many great clues to go at.  If I had to pick a favourite it would have to be 25 across, though many others run it close.  I have two misgivings: 10 across and 14 down.  These could be a little dodgy, or could just it be me who lacks understanding?   It would not be the first time.

Hold the mouse pointer over any clue number to read the clue.

Across
1 PECCADILLO PECCA sounds like (reportedly) pecker (bird’s bill) and ILL (sick) in DO (party)
7, 9 SOFT SPOT SOFT (easy, 15 across) SPOT (see)
10 NANOSECOND cryptic definition, a small (minute) time unit. I didn’t like this since one can not solve the clue without the crossing letters – picosecond, attosecond and decisecond also fit the clue.
11 BRAHMS BRAsH (crude) S=soprano missing and MS (manuscript)
12 OPERATIC (TO RECAP I)*
13 ARCHAISMS ARCH (chief) and Son in AIM (end)
15, 17 EASY MEAT ME (the setter) in (YET AS A)* cryptic=anagram
19 FIGHT OFF TOFF (aristocrat) following (behind) FIG (damn!) Hard
22 PUSHIEST SHIES (throws) in PUT (position)
23 MUTTON MUTT (dog) ON (being cooked) – Chambers gives ‘on the table’, ‘on the fire’ and ‘on the menu’ as possible definitions for ‘on’
25 STRING BEAN anagram (beating) of roGer (heart of) and BANNISTER – a runner bean
26, 27 RING TRUE Runs with I (one, Roman numeral) and URGENT* – definition is ‘adds up’
28 DISHARMONY ARM ON (keep supplying weapons) in DISHY (fit, attractive)
Down
2 EMPEROR EM (typographical measure) PER (a, two-a-penny) OR (gold)
3 CATCH double definition – contract a disease
4 DYNASTIC ITS ANY (some) reversed in in Washington DC
5 LAND OF MY FATHERS (STAFF HE RANDOMLY)* – a song from Wales
6 OYSTER stitched into (run into) bOYS TERrorising
7 SACRAMENT A CRAM (crowd) caught (arrested) by SENT (dispatched) – holy orders
8 FANCIES FAN (cool) ChIsElS (oldd letters) – definition is ‘would have’
14 HITCHHIKE H (hours) HIKE (travel) outside ITCH (longing) – definition is ‘get a lift’. To me ‘travel’ and ‘hours’ are the wrong way round here. I would have expected “Hours travel outside…”. This clue has an &lit flavour, possibly there is another explanation I have missed; ‘hike’ can also mean ‘lift’, ‘travel for hours’ and ‘travel outside’.  ITCH (longing) could be ‘getting a lift’ inside H HIKE (travel hours outside).
16 EGOMANIA IN A MO (soon) in AGE (effect of growing up) reversed
18 EQUATOR EAT (worry) about QU (question) over OR (alternative)
20 FROWN ON OWN (private) in FRONt (battle zone) shortened
21 WEDGED W (with) EDGE (creep) on D (date)
24 THRUM THRU (through, by) M (amile) – definition is ‘beat’, a low frequency sound

*anagram

12 Responses to “Financial Times 14,029 by Loroso”

  1. crypticsue says:

    4d is surely DOMESTIC – its some reversed (set up) in DC, thus making the unit of time a MINISECOND.

    Mr Mayer in fine form with this one. I did enjoy myself so thank you to him and PeeDee too.

  2. PeeDee says:

    MINISECOND is not in Chambers, though it may still be a word, I don’t know for sure. Does domestic really mean ‘of regime’?

    This highlights the problem with clues that depend on knowing the crossing the letters I think!

  3. anax says:

    Hi both!

    Just a note on 10a/4d. No, it couldn’t be DOMESTIC because SOME< would result in DEMOSTIC, which I suppose is beautiful in its own way but, sadly, not real.
    The choice for 10a was the one likely to be familiar to most – PICOSECOND perhaps, but the other examples I think would be too far out there for yer average solver. In any case, it's one of those where, if a choice is available, the only attack is to capture the cross-checkers – just part of the wicked game we play.

  4. crypticsue says:

    I knew I was wrong as soon as I pressed ‘post comment’ Memo to self, double check before submitting.

  5. PeeDee says:

    DOMESTIC wasn’t so bad, IT has SOME (set up=anagram) in DC does give DOMESTIC, and one does talk about a ‘domestic regime’. Using it’s for ‘it has’ would be a bit iffy, though I have seen diliberate misuse of apostrophies in cryptics may times before.

    DEMOSTIC was actually my first guess and I got as far as looking it up in the dictionary. I was expecting it to be a variation on DEMOTIC meaning something like ‘of rule by the people’ from the Greek demos.

  6. shuchi says:

    Very enjoyable puzzle, loved 25a and 28d. Thanks for the blog PeeDee, I needed your help to understand 23a. ON = ‘being cooked’ is new to me.

    I had the same question as you about 14d. H((ITCH)H)IKE was another possibility I considered, that too doesn’t fit 100%.

  7. Wanderer says:

    Thanks PeeDee (and especially for going to the trouble of doing your blog twice). I agree with your assessment, this was excellent. The south-east held me up for a long time; when I finally got ‘in a mo’ for ‘soon’ in EGOMANIA, and ‘arm on’ for ‘keep supplying weapons’ in DISHARMONY, I thought them both inspired. Also big ticks for STRING BEAN, ARCHAISM and the simple but beautiful EMPEROR.

    Many thanks to Anax/Loroso.

  8. Bhavan says:

    I see 14D as:

    Travel = defn
    Hours = H H
    Outside = c/c indicator
    Longing = ITCH
    to get = link
    lift = HIKE

  9. PeeDee says:

    I had not thought of ‘travel’ as the definition, that could have possibilities. Your explanation above gives too may H’s in the solution though, it would give HITCHHHIKE.

  10. PeeDee says:

    anax, if you are still reading this, what was the intended parsing for 14D?

  11. anax says:

    Harrrumph! It was what we call in the trade ‘an error’. The HITCHHIKE clue had started with ‘almost’ or ‘mostly’ to remove the H from ITC[h] but the surface became clumsy (also wasn’t keen on H being the next letter in the answer) so I deleted the indicator, then got distracted by something, most likely a phone call. Returning to the clue, some odd bit of my brain said “Right, that one’s done”…

    …amazing! I’ve just had the flashback moment. It was a phone call – while talking I was looking at another answer and formulating a clue idea. I shut off the unfinished HITCHHIKE clue and forgot to return to it.

    A bit embarrassing.

  12. PeeDee says:

    It was that person from Porlock calling again.

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