Never knowingly undersolved.

Guardian Quiptic 663 / Moley

Posted by Big Dave on July 30th, 2012

Big Dave.

A straightforward puzzle from Moley.

I look forward to your comments.

Most of the definitions given are from Chambers 11th Edition. Most of the standard abbreviations used in the wordplay are shown with the unused letters in brackets e.g. S(on).


8a           Paid regularly to raid seal compound (8)
SALARIED – This adjective meaning paid regularly is an anagram (compound) of RAID SEAL

9a           By going without water becomes very clever (6)
BRAINY – put BY around some water that falls from clouds to get an adjective meaning very clever

10a        Cook’s point for grating (6)
GRILLE – a verb meaning to cook by radiant heat is followed by a compass point to get a grating

11a        No treaty made up for the lawyer (8)
ATTORNEY – an anagram (made up) of NO TREATY gives a lawyer

12a        Mark some, discarding others (4)
SCAR – this mark is hidden inside the clue

13a        Plan with supporter in order to achieve set aims (10)
TACTICALLY – a charade of a plan and a supporter or accomplice gives an adverb meaning in order to achieve set aims

15a        Count in trouble for smarminess (7)
UNCTION – an anagram (trouble) of COUNT IN gives this smarminess

16a        Resistance of French at barrier (7)
DEFENCE – this resistance comes from a charade of the French for of and a barrier

18a        Police officer’s esteem for nerve (10)
DISRESPECT – start with some CID officers and add a word meaning esteem to get nerve or impudence

19a        One member, a Maltese, initially becomes a religious leader (4)
IMAM – start with I (one) and then add the initial letters of the next three words to get this religious leader

20a        Incentive for a call to action (8)
STIMULUS – a double definition

22a        In style for current year (6)
TRENDY – this adjective meaning in style comes from a current or direction followed by Y(ear)

23a        Good French material for a hat (6)
BONNET – combine the French for good with a material used to make curtains to get a hat

24a        Did cadet somehow become hooked? (8)
ADDICTED – an anagram (somehow) of DID CADET gives an adjective meaning hooked or drug-dependent


1d           Hold faith to convey confidence (5,10)
CARRY CONVICTION – combine words meaning to hold and faith to get a phrase meaning to convey confidence

2d           Work left prematurely to go to bed too soon (5,10)
EARLY RETIREMENT – a phrase describing leaving work prematurely also means to go to bed too soon

3d           Ways to go to get instructions (10)
DIRECTIONS – a double definition – ways in which to go and instructions

4d           Progress with publicity at front of church (7)
ADVANCE – this verb meaning to progress comes from a charade of a two-letter word for publicity, a word meaning the front or foremost part of a group of people and the Church of England

5d           Assist sailor with alien (4)
ABET – this verb meaning to assist comes from a charade of a sailor and Steven Spielberg’s alien

6d           Legal document is union’s authorisation (8,7)
MARRIAGE LICENCE – a cryptic definition of the authorisation given to a man and his wife

7d           Coke drunken lady spilled is out of harm’s way (5,4,3,3)
UNDER LOCK AND KEY – an anagram (spilled) of COKE DRUNKEN LADY gives a phrase meaning out of harm’s way

14d        Bungling of clumsy one spoiled duet (10)
INEPTITUDE – this bungling is derived from a word meaning clumsy followed by an anagram (spoiled) of DUET

17d        Entertaining Japanese women with cheery sound son has made (7)
GEISHAS – to get these Japanese women who entertain men with conversation, dance, and song start with what sounds like an adjective meaning cheery or jolly then add S(on) and HAS

21d        Related when Communist left for dead (4)
LATE – remove (left) RED (Communist) from RE(LATE)D to get a word meaning dead or departed

I’m not particularly keen on clues where the elements of the wordplay and the answer come from the same root – e.g.grill – to cook on a grating, grille – a grating; tactic – a plan, tactically – using a plan to achieve an aim; respect – esteem, disrespect – lack of esteem; trend – a current, trendy – current or in style.  And that’s just the acrosses.  What do you think?

4 Responses to “Guardian Quiptic 663 / Moley”

  1. Andrew says:

    Thanks for the blog Big Dave. Your final remarks take the words out of my mouth – I’m not at all keen on the style of clue you describe, and this puzzle is so full of them that it almost looks like a deliberate “theme”. In the acrosses we also have (perhaps more obscurely than the examples you mention) deFENCE and the non-double definition of STIMULUS. (I also took 6dn as a very weak dd.)

  2. Eileen says:

    I totally agree. Thanks for the blog.

  3. Tallboss says:

    I thought this was a very fair quiptic, aimed at the right level a quiptic should be

    Thanks to Moley and BD for the blog

  4. Kathryn's Dad says:

    I think this hit the spot for a Quiptic – okay, there are a few overlapping clues/answers, but there were some nice constructions too. I thought UNDER LOCK AND KEY was a nice anagram.

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