Posted by nmsindy on August 6th, 2012
I found this quite a bit tougher than Quixote usually is, solving time 38 mins. Very enjoyable puzzle – esp liked 27A, 8D and 20D.
* = anagram
1 BEARINGS a R (river) in BEINGS (people) Took me a long time to get this in what I found was the most difficult part of the grid. When I finally saw it, helped by crossing letters, I wondered why I’d had such difficulty.
5 SKIP Double definition.
9 ESSEX E (English) S (Society) SEX (it)
10 OFF-STREET (set effort)*
12 COLONIAL the “:” in the clue forms part of the wordplay here leading to COLON I = one A L (lake)
13 UMBLES New word to me that I got from the clear wordplay ‘umble from humble (lowly) with the h dropped s = son Heart, lung, liver of a deer etc
15 RESERVE PRICE Cryptic definition punning on ‘lot’ from auctions.
17 EVER-CHANGING In cryptic crossword language the answer could become ‘veer’ ie ever changing (with ‘changing’ an anagram indicator). Definition: always shifting around
21 ERMINE vermin (rodents) less v (very) E (last letter of nice)
22 STRUMPET S (first letter of shout) TRUMPET
24 ESOTERICA (a coterie’s)*
25 ISSUE is Sue (little woman = abbrev of Susan)
26 DIET die (conk out) t (time)
27 ALLERGEN all (everyone) (green)*
1 BASELESS Took me ages to get this - when (AS) E (elevated initially ie first letter) in BLESS (praise). Definition: idle, one of the meanings of which is ‘without basis’
2 AIX EN PROVENCE (can vex pioneer)*
3 ICOSAHEDRA I needed to go to reference sources for this even tho it was very obviously (ace hairdos)*. I’d not heard (or had forgotten) the word – it’s the plural of ICOSAHEDRON which is a solid with twenty plane faces so that is what score (20) refers to in the clue. When trying to work out what the anagram letters might lead to, I went astray by assuming that, as it seemed to be a plural (as indeed it was), it would end in S.
4 GAFF gaffer less ER gaff = spar (nautical)
6 KNEELS Definition: shows deference “Neil’s” from Neil Armstrong
7 POTASH SAT (Saturday) and OP (work) all going upwards on H (hospital). Definition: (chemical) compound
8 FENCER Cryptic definition A ‘sporty’ type at the sport of fencing and fences between neighbours’ properties
11 TIME-CONSUMING Somewhat similar to 17A in ‘working backwards’ as ‘consuming’ in cryptic speak could indicate a hidden answer and TIME is contained in “What I’m enjoying” Definition: taking hours and hours
14 ARCHITRAVE RA (artist) reversed ie set up in a down clue CH (church) IT RAVE (enthusiastic reception)
16 DIAPASON Definition: stop as diapason = foundation-stop of an organ Di (little woman) A PA(father) SON
18 GATHER g (good) ATHER(ton) Mike Atherton less ton = century
19 LEGEND leg = on (side of cricket pitch) END (death) with an &lit touch too, I guess
20 IMPOSE I (one) M (maiden = maiden over from cricket) POSE (face the camera)
23 RIAL lair (den) reversed. Main monetary unit of Iran and some other countries