Never knowingly undersolved.

Independent 8025 / Dac

Posted by Bertandjoyce on July 4th, 2012


When we saw that we had a Dac puzzle to blog we were pleased – his surface readings are always good.

There are a few new terms to indicate word play that we haven’t met before. Overall an enjoyable solve. We particularly liked 18ac and 4d.

If someone has access to other dictionaries (we only have Chambers electronic version on our ipad) we would be interested to hear views on the abbreviation in 21ac.

1   To leave university is a disappointment
COMEDOWN We suppose that the opposite of ‘go up’ to university would be come down = disappointment
5   Potentially lousy sort in school?
SNITCH NIT (louse) in SCH (school) = a snitch would not be a particularly welcome type of person anywhere, let alone in school. Seeing ‘nit’ brought back memories of the regular school nurse visits – everyone scratching their heads despite having no reason to!
10   Fruit imported by Roman governor
MANGO Hidden or ‘imported’ within Ro(MAN GO)vernor = fruit
11   Cleaner from US city answerable to British sovereign
LAUNDERER LA (US city) + UNDER (answerable to) + ER (British sovereign) = cleaner
12   Two forms of physical punishment? That’s laughable
SLAPSTICK SLAP (one form of punishment) + STICK (another form of punishment) = something that may make you laugh
13   One wading out of water gets swept back
EGRET Reversed or ‘swept back’ within wa(TER GE)ts = wading bird
14   Seats still available in upper circle for film
ROOM AT THE TOP If there were seats in the upper circle there would definitely be some room at the top of the cinema = this1959 film based on a book with the same name by John Braine
18   Drug stashed by children at rear of toilet, moving supply
LOOSE-JOINTED JOINT (drug) inside or ‘stashed by’ SEED (children) after or ‘at rear of’ LOO (toilet) = if you are loose-jointed you have supple limbs so you would be able to move supply. A good bit of misdirection here and one that needed quite a few checking letters before the answer became obvious.
21   Expert tapes response in European language
GREEK This one left us a little baffled. We were both looking for ANS hidden within something and then we had the K at the end. Could it be DANSK? The fact that we are currently in Greece still didn’t help! In the end we thought R (response) inside GEEK (expert) = European language. We haven’t come across R for response but we think it must be there somewhere. We presume the use of ‘tapes’ to imply that it is wrapping around something is a new one on us but it does provide good surface reading.
23   Scorn from daughter is precursor to father’s temper
DISPARAGE D (daughter) + IS in front of or ‘precursor to’ PA (father) + RAGE (temper) = scorn
24   The French repulsed in action battling against a region of Spain
CATALONIA LA (‘the’ in French reversed or ‘repulsed’) inside or ‘in’ an anagram of ACTION (anagrind is ‘battling’) + A = region of Spain
25   Trainee’s first in class assessment, defying expectations totally
CADET First letters of Class Assessment, Defying Expectations Totally = trainee
26   Non-professionals put me down ultimately
LAYMEN LAY (put) + ME + N (last or ‘ultimate’ letter of down) = non-professionals
27   Perhaps tape musical introduction to Erasure compilation
MEASURER M (first letter or ‘introduction to’ musical) + anagram of ERASURE (anagrind is ‘compilation’) = a tape could be used to measure something
1   In travelling bag male has single shirt
CAMISE CASE (travelling bag) with M (male) + I (one) inside = shirt
2   Book Premiership players (Arsenal’s wingers)
MANUAL MAN U (Premiership players) + AL (the first and last letters or ‘wingers’ of ArsenaL = book
3   Sweeties about to be put on top of a certain sort of cake
DROP SCONE DROPS (sweeties, as in pear drops) + C (about) on top of ONE (a certain) = sort of cake. This one brought back memories of childhood – you don’t seem to see them around now but they are delicious freshly cooked!
4   Eager to absorb one American or British author
WILLIAM GOLDING WILLING (eager) outside or ‘absorbing’ I (one) + AM (American) + GOLD (or) = British author best known probably for his novel Lord of the Flies.
6   One’s uncovered declaration of independence in Newcastle area
NUDIE Another topical clue for us, given that we are still in Greece! UDI (declaration of independence) inside or ‘in’ NE (Newcastle area) = one who is by definition, uncovered!
7   Making pie, measure salt
TARTRATE TART (pie) + RATE (measure) = salt. The word ‘making’ is not strictly necessary but it does help the surface reading.
8   Some cars in Derby, say, will bypass road works
HARDTOPS HAT (a Derby is a type of hat) outside or ‘bypassing’ RD (road) + OPS (works) = some cars are hard tops as opposed to soft tops!
9   Visiting Cornish resort, packed a little sun tan concoction and beach accessories
BUCKET AND SPADE An anagram of PACKED + S (a little bit of sun) + TAN (anagrind is concoction) inside or ‘visiting’ BUDE (a Cornish resort) = beach accessories. Another crafty use of a different word to indicate that something is inside which helps the surface reading but makes solving more difficult!
15   Church leaders share rich spoils
HIERARCHS Anagram of SHARE RICH (anagrind is ‘spoils’) = Church leaders
16   A soldier admitted to nearby bar without reason
ALOGICAL A + GI (soldier) inside or ‘admitted to’ LOCAL (nearby bar) = without reason. This was a new word for us – it was easy from the cryptic part but we still checked it electronically after entry.
17   Witches brought before judge in English city
COVENTRY COVEN (witches) before TRY (judge) = English city
19   Angry over Communist uprising in plant
MADDER MAD (angry) over a reversal or ‘uprising’ of RED (Communist) = plant. The common form is the source of a red dye
20   Plate wife kept in safe
PEWTER W (wife) inside or ‘kept in’ PETER (safe) = plate
22   Aussie singer’s extremely kinky romance?
KYLIE KY (the first and last letters or ‘extremes’ of KinkY + LIE (romance) = Australian singer


6 Responses to “Independent 8025 / Dac”

  1. Kathryn's Dad says:

    Thanks, both, for blogging. Have you emigrated permanently to Greece?

    Those of us with work to do will have appreciated this straightforward but enjoyable Dac puzzle. All smoothly clued as usual, with LOOSE-JOINTED and CATALONIA my favourites today.

    I parsed GREEK like you did. R is in the SOED for ‘response’, with a note that it’s ‘ecclesiastical’, so I guess it’s referring to a response from the congregation to an utterance from the priest.

    And, er, what exactly are you trying to tell us in your explanation of 6dn? Fifteensquared is no place to share your dirty little secrets, you know …

    Thanks to Dac as always.

  2. Pelham Barton says:

    Thanks Dac for an enjoyable puzzle and Bert and Joyce for the blog.

    21ac: R for “response” is also in Collins 2000.

    8dn: Minor quibble here. I think this clue would read better with “bypassing” instead of “will bypass”. As the clue stands, the last six words make a perfectly good cryptic indication in the form of a grammatical sentence. There is nothing wrong with that, nor is there anything wrong in itself with the use of “in” as a linking word, but to me it needs to be followed by a noun phrase, not a complete sentence.

  3. nmsindy says:

    Yes, R for “response(in Christian liturgy)” is also in Collins 2009. In 7D, I think “Making” acts as a link between the wordplay and definition parts though in this case it is not positioned between them but nonetheless works logically in that way. Needed, as you say, also for the surface which would be pretty meaningless otherwise. Enjoyable puzzle, on the easier side of the Indy average – favourite SNITCH. Thanks Dac and B&J.

  4. Wil Ransome says:

    As usual of course Dac at his best — he’s always at his best so far as I can see. But why — and they often do it — do setters refer to the film when the film is only a version of the book (Room at the Top)? The book was written first and was a great success, and a very good film was made of it, but the main piece of creation in this case is surely the book. With something like ‘Psycho’, although that is indeed based on an original book, the film achieved such prominence that to refer to ‘Psycho’ as a film is what one would expect, but ‘Room at the Top’ is hardly in the same league as a film. I suppose the surface encourages it here.

  5. Dormouse says:

    Started this late and had a bit of a struggle, not helped by getting 24ac wrong at first. I’d vaguely worked out how the clue was made up, already had the ‘l’ from “Kylie”, guessed there would be an -el-, -al- or -sel- there and saw that “Andalucia” would fit. It was only when I finally got 17dn much later that I rubbed it out and then was able to complete most of that corner.

    Ended up doing an electronic search for 18ac and “loose-jointed” was the only word that fit, but I couldn’t see why. Similarly with 8dn, where I thought “hardtop” was a type of road surface and therefore something to do with road works. (I’m a non-driver.)

  6. nmsindy says:

    Understand the point you make at #4, Wil, re film vs book (I remember being surprised when AJ Cronin’s “Citadel” was described as a film).
    BUT, if a work is a book and a film (the book usually came first!) it can be clued as either, perhaps based on which is better known, which the film just might be here – more people watch films than read books. I read the book and saw the film so remember it all – reading the book first

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