Never knowingly undersolved.

Independent 8073 / Crosophile

Posted by Bertandjoyce on August 29th, 2012


We’ve only blogged one Crosophile before. As one of us typed up the clues, before we had really even started, a few of them were solved quite easily (12ac, 13ac, 28ac and 4d). It wasn’t until we had completed the grid and started to assemble the blog that we realised how ingenious some of the other clues were.

The surface reading was good throughout and we really liked 18ac, 27ac and 23d.

We felt that there was enough in the puzzle to satisfy new solvers as well as the ‘old-hands’ so thanks Crosophile for an enjoyable solve!

We’re now on our way to Pisa/Florence (flights permitting!) so if there are any errors we may not be able to address these until ‘oggi piu tardi’.

1   Still 7 in retreat protecting ramshackle shelter
NEVERTHELESS SEVEN (7) reversed or ‘in retreat’ around or ‘protecting’ an anagram of SHELTER (anagrind is ramshackle) = still. Nothing whatsoever to do with sternum!
10   Landscape at first’s ordinary black and blue
OBSCENE SCENE (landscape) with O (ordinary) and B (black) at the beginning or ‘at first’ = blue
11   Go off place concerned with factory on the outskirts
PUTREFY PUT (place) + RE (concerned with) + F(actor)Y the first and last letter or ‘outskirts’ of the word = go off
12   A nymph Diana transfigured
NAIAD Anagram of DIANA (anagrind is ‘transfigured’) = nymph
13   Recital played with new instrument
CLARINET Anagram of RECITAL and N (new) (anagrind is played) = instrument
15   I need green bananas – GM perhaps?
ENGINEERED Anagram of I NEED GREEN (anagrind is ‘bananas’) = GM as in “Genetically Modified’ or engineered
16   What Descartes concluded about mass for religious leader
IMAM I AM (from Descartes’ saying, “I think therefore I am”) around or ‘about’ M (mass) = religious leader
18   Relax after first of sundowners
UNDO Hidden after the first letter, s(UNDO)wners = relax. A good bit of misdirection here!
20   King dispatched soldiers to breach alien offence
RESENTMENT R (king) + SENT (dispatched) and MEN (soldiers)  inside or ‘breaching’ ET (alien) = offence
22   French city with links to delicacies
NICETIES NICE (French city) + TIES (links) = delicacies
24   Gold lamé for starters, sex appeal, the ultimate in showbiz
GLITZ Initial letters or ‘starters’ of G(old) L(amé) + IT (sex appeal) + Z (last letter of showbiZ) = you could describe each of the items in the clue as glitz!
26   Call in say for rearranging flowering plants
SYRINGA RING (call) inside or ‘in’ and anagram of SAY (anagrind is ‘rearranging’) = flowering plant whose common name is lilac
27   Be encouraged to take X to court?
HEARTEN If you were at a hearing (in court) with X you may HEAR TEN (X, as in the roman numerals) = be encouraged
28   See me endlessly practise playing great works
MASTERPIECES  Anagram of SEE ME  + PRACTIS(e) the last letter is removed so the word is ‘endless’ (anagrind is playing) = great works
2   Following genuine mix up after docking, least hint of ‘sorry’ is accepted
ENSUING Anagram of GENUIN(e) with the last letter removed or after ‘docking’ around or ‘accepting’ S (the initial letter or ‘least hint of’ S(orry)) = following
3   … putting things right for instance about row with workers
EMENDING EG (for instance) around or ‘about’ MEN (workers) + DIN (row) = putting things right
4   Long journey back in darker times
TREK Reversed or ‘back’ and hidden within the clue dar(KER T)imes = long journey
5   Like some fruit trees? Spotted Alan and Liz breaking in
ESPALIERED AL and ER (Liz) inside or ‘breaking into’ ESPIED (spotted) = the way some fruit trees can be trained. We’re not sure how the Queen reacts to being called Liz!
6   A key on the right or in US in the middle, but not at the top
ENTER The US spelling of (c)ENTER (middle) with the initial removed or ‘not at the top’ = the key on the computer keyboard which is situated on the right. We really liked this clue – a real gem which brought a smile when we solved it!
7   Bottom doesn’t start at the base of back bone
STERNUM STERN (back) with (b)UM (bottom with the initial letter removed or ‘not starting’) afterwards or ‘at the base’ = bone
8   Perhaps use one’s time bonus for charity?
BOUNTEOUSNESS An anagram of USE ONE’S T BONUS = charity. Thanks to Paul and Alan.
9   By day’s end stop at filling in quantitative assessment in organisation
SYSTEMATIZING The last letter or ‘end’ of daY + STEM (stop) inside or ‘filling’ SIZING (quantitative assessment)  = organization
14   Slow to wrap English cut veg in fruit
DECELERATE DATE (fruit) around or ‘wrapping’ E (English) + CELER(y) (vegetable with last letter removed or ‘cut’) = slow
17   ‘Do nothing’ phase comprising ant’s metamorphosis
STAGNATE STAGE (phase) around or ‘comprising’ an anagram of ANT (anagrind is ‘metamorphosis’)  = do nothing
19   Good form of liquor styled for the 20s and 30s?
DECORUM A play on the style popular in the 20s and 30s ‘art DECO’ + RUM (liquor) = good form
21   Keep 1st letter without envelope – one from Paul?
EPISTLE Hidden inside or ‘without envelope’ ke(EP IST LE)tter = one from Paul
23   TA’s lacking hard military vehicles
TANKS T(h)ANKS (ta lacking H or ‘hard’)  = military vehicles
25   Cut of meat?
CHOP Double definition CHOP (cut) = meat as in pork chop!


14 Responses to “Independent 8073 / Crosophile”

  1. Kathryn's Dad says:

    Greece one minute, Italy the next … visit Lisbon and Dublin on the way back and you’ll have the full set of distressed Euro economies to tick off the list.

    My experience was like yours: some easily solved clues, but then some tricky ones to finish. The two long outer clues that were anagrams were not too bad, but the other two I struggled with, which didn’t help.

    But it was all sound as a pound, with STERNUM my favourite clue this morning.

    Buon viaggio to B&J and thank you to Crosophile for a teasing but enjoyable puzzle.

  2. allan_c says:

    K’s D, shouldn’t they also include Madrid?

    But back to the topic; in 8d the anagram fodder is USE ONES T[ime] BONUS.

    All good stuff. Thanks, Crosophile and B&J

  3. Paul A says:

    Can’t parse 8d – ‘one’s time bonus’ has got an I in it

  4. Paul A says:

    is it maybe ‘use ones t bonus’ ?

  5. Paul A says:

    Sorry – didn’t read allan_c :-( I’ll go away now…..

  6. Bertandjoyce says:

    Thanks for stepping in folks and sorting out our error in the anagram. We’re safely installed in Pisa and leaning towards having a piece of Pisa pizza in the piazza! We’re also thinking of rescheduling our flights home via Madrid etc.

    Will amend the blog accordingly.

    Ciao folks!

  7. nmsindy says:

    Thanks, B&J and Crosophile. Pleasing puzzle – my favourites were NEVERTHELESS, HEARTEN and TANKS.

  8. Wil Ransome says:

    Very nice puzzle. I have so got into the habit of enjoying Dac on Wednesdays that it originally seemed a bit of a let-down to have someone else, but this was so good that I wasn’t bothered by being Dacless.

    Only one slight quibble: ‘Following’ in 2dn, which doesn’t apparently do anything — indeed I think it gratuitously misleads. Just seems to be there for the surface.

  9. Crosophile says:

    Thanks for the blog, B&J. Hope you enjoy Florence – not to mention Dougal and Zebidee. And thanks for all other comments too.

  10. Crosophile says:

    @8. Thanks Wil. Much appreciated.
    Re 2d, ‘Following’ is the defn for ENSUING :-)

  11. Kathryn's Dad says:

    Time for bed, said Zebedee … but not before replying to Wil, to say that ‘following’ is surely the definition, rather than just being there for the surface.

  12. Kathryn's Dad says:

    Beaten to it by the setter. Definitely time for bed …

  13. John says:

    Yes obviously, in 2dn. Sorry to be so silly, Crosophile.

  14. Wil Ransome says:

    Just realised that I was logged in as John. Signed out now.

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