Never knowingly undersolved.

Guardian 25,743 – Rufus

Posted by Andrew on September 17th, 2012


A very quick solve, even by Rufus standards, with the usual generous helping of double and cryptic definitions. Not much more to say really, apart from thanks to Flashling for standing in for me last week while I was on holiday.

5. SCRAPS Double definition
6. IN-LAWS Cryptic definition
9. PUMICE UP reversed + MICE
11. ARIA A + reverse of AIR
12. SELF-DENIAL Cryptic definition
18. LIFE-GUARDS Double definition
21. CREW Double definition – I think “crewcut” is a rather old-fashioned style now, once much favoured by clean-cut Americans
23. NEPHEW NE (quarter of the compass – Chambers says that “quarter” is “a cardinal point, or any point, of the compass” (my emphasis)) + PHEW
24. ROTTEN Double definition, referring to Rotten Row in Hyde Park, apparently a corruption of the French Route du Roi
2. SPEEDS Reverse of DEEP in SS (crossword cliché for “on board”, meaning “in a ship”)
4. PARSON PAR (standard) + SON (issue)
5. SQUIRE Double definition – “Escort lady” and “gentleman”
7. SEAWAY Cryptic definition
8. BELLIGERENT Really just a definition, once you’ve solved 5ac
14. ROUTINES TIN (money) in ROUES
15. OCCUPIED Double definition (two very closely-related definitions, I must say)
16. SILVER Double definition – Long John Silver from Treasure Island, and a silver medal in the Olympics, etc.
19. ERRATA Reverse of TAR in ERA
20. SENTRY S[tart] + ENTRY

22 Responses to “Guardian 25,743 – Rufus”

  1. Paul B says:

    10 across = restraint: admirable indeed.

  2. flashling says:

    Always the bridesmaid me, glad to help out Andrew.

  3. Miche says:

    Thanks, Andrew.

    1d is a bit odd, unless I’ve misunderstood: two anagrinds (mysterious, involving) and a definition that seems approximate to say the least. I am mildly irritated by this clue; I am not incensed.

    I’m sure I’ve seen 7d before. I like 12a.

  4. yvains says:

    @Miche – I think ‘mysterious’ is the only anagrind, and it parses (though perhaps a bit wordy). It’s a ‘recipe’ type clue – ‘Introduce’ (insert) ‘girl’ (Rita) ‘to mysterious rite’ (into an anag of rite) ‘involving incense’ (giving a word which means incense). Dunno if that helps. :)

    The crossword as a whole (as the intro here suggests) was simplest-possible Mon a.m. fun.

  5. Miche says:

    Yvains – thanks. In the cold light of morning I see that “involving” is just there to yoke the wordplay to the definition, but I’m no more enamoured of the latter than I was last night.

  6. Eccles45 says:

    I didn’t see a blog for last Monday’s Rufus – and it isn’t in the Guardian category either. Not to worry

  7. John Appleton says:

    I liked 1d, I think “involving” was simply a word to bridge the definition and subsidiary indicator. Nice anagram at 13, too.

    Thanks, Andrew for explaining ROTTEN. Hyde park geography not my strong point, as you might expect from one living in the North. Some might consider it unfair as a clue in that respect, but checking and an easy definition make up for that.

  8. Robi says:

    Mostly straightforward although bottom half of crossword slower than top.

    Thanks Andrew, especially for the derivation of ‘Rotten Row.’

    Eccles45 @6; the last Rufus blog is the second listed in the Guardian section above (posted on 15th Sep by Sil.)

  9. RCWhiting says:

    Thanks all
    “A very quick solve, even by Rufus standards”………
    and from the blogger too. Nothing more to add.

  10. grunos says:

    I don’t get the link between household brigade? and life guard. Can someone enlighten me?

  11. grunos says:

    now i see…

  12. Giovanna says:

    Thanks, Rufus, for a gentle start to the week and Andrew for the blog.

    Giovanna x

  13. Derek Lazenby says:

    Went brain dead on this one. Heaven knows why. Fetch the men with the white coats!

  14. Brendan (not that one) says:

    Another Monday, another Rufus!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


  15. Sil van den Hoek says:

    Brendan (certainly not that one), I think this is not a very nice comment. We all know that the Guardian wants an extremely accessible crossword on Mondays, so if you don’t like that, I would say: just don’t give it a go.
    One can only complain about the level of difficulty, but in general not really about the clueing as such.
    Yes, 25ac and 17d are examples of clues that must have been done N times before, but it’s not a Saturday Prize Puzzle, though.
    [although I’m pretty sure Rufus is capable of writing one]

    Many thanks to Rufus to serve the nation with what’s intended!

    And, btw, our last entry was ROTTEN (24ac).
    It had to be that, but we couldn’t explain it (just like John Appleton).
    I wonder who of Ye All Above could.
    That’s Rufus. Easy, yes, but.

  16. ToniL says:

    yvains @4 If your Guardian avatar is to be believed, ‘not one ounce… given’ – if that’s the case – have a little nibble on some humble pie and come back to the fold – I’m sure you’ll be welcomed. (I spent over 7 hours in total – more than half on yours – pick yourself up, dust yourself off etc).

  17. ToniL says:

    @ Jerry, it wasn’t more than half! but it was about 3 hours – and I still didn’t finish. I won’t have been the only one – as a reward to me, I’d like a comment from you about Tramp’s excellent offering on tomorrow’s Guardian thread!

  18. Brendan (not that one) says:

    Sil @15

    It may not be a very nice comment but it is an honest comment.

    I very much disagree with your “accessible” comment as Rufus has become a law unto himself as far as balance as correct definitions are concerned. See 1d today!!!

    My query is why is Monday almost always Rufus. Surely the many other compilers could produce a more representative “Cryptic” crossword but just a little easier?

    The Guardian is a public offering and not a private club so I believe I am quite justified in airing my astonishment and disappointment.

  19. RCWhiting says:

    Brendan @18
    As you might guess, I agree.
    I do not accept the view that there must be an easy (not up to Guardian standard) cryptic every single Monday (whoever sets it).
    Beginners should go elsewhere (D.Tel,FT,Everyman etc) to train themselves before coming to The Guardian which has (or used to have) a reputation as the ‘best’ (ie hardest) daily paper cryptic.

  20. yvains says:

    @ToniL (16, 17) – Please accept my apologies for the slow response – it was only by chance (happening to click on yesterday’s puzzle-blog by mistake, rather than today’s) that I saw your posts at all, and I wouldn’t want you to think I was snubbing comments which were, I’m sure, well-intentioned.

    I’m afraid, however, that I don’t see that setting myself up for more unpleasantness, and becoming the unwilling focus of further discord, would be of service to anyone – sorry. Thank you for the thought, though. :) I hope you enjoyed some of your three hours!

  21. Karen says:

    I know Monday Rufus-puzzles must be annoyingly easy for you seasoned solvers out there, but as a crossword-novice with English as my second language, I LOVE that there is at least one puzzle a week that I am (almost) able to solve :D And Rufus is never too obscure or too UK-specific (although I had no clue on the park-one)

    And I know there are easier cryptic crosswords elsewhere, but the easy Guardian ones are easy without being stupid (usually they’re really nice and clever), and the online version of the puzzle is really great – maybe they should just do two puzzles, one easy and one hard ;)

    My favourite was the Saint George anagram

  22. brucew_aus says:

    Thanks Rufus and Andrew

    An elapsed month to write in ROTTEN refusing to do so until I had worked out why ! LIFE GUARDS as a regiment of the HOUSEHOLD BRIGADE was also not that straightforward to this antipodean.

    Nice to have a Rufus that took a while.

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