Fifteensquared

Never knowingly undersolved.

Inquisitor 1253: Missing by Schadenfreude

Posted by duncanshiell on November 7th, 2012

duncanshiell.

Schadenfreude is a prolific setter who produces interesting puzzles which almost always have real words in the solution even after letters have been added to or changed in the grid.  This Inquisitor maintained these standards.

The preamble stated that "Solvers are required to complete the grid to reveal the position of a missing person which should be highlighted.  The wordplay in 14 clues (the answers to which are entered normally) lead to the answer with one letter missing.  In order, these letters provide a cryptic indication of a thematic work.  Numbers in brackets give the length of the grid entries, all of which are real words."

There are, therefore, two things going on – missing letters in the origianl grid and missing letters in some wordplay.

After the usual initial panic when it was not clear which clues would lead to blanks in  the grid, it became apparent that the clues weren’t too difficult.  Many were simple additive constructions.  After solving 1a, PLATE, 10a, AMATE, 12a ACE, 4d ÉTAT, 1d RAPPERS  and 2d LAVA, I got an inkling that the missing letters in the grid were probably going to be down the diagonal from top left to bottom right. This helped me sort out a number of the other clues, as it gave me a guide to their initial lengths.

Sorting out the missing letters in the wordplay took a little longer.  Early letters that I got were S in 11a ISLE,  E in 14a, ASPER, H in 7d, ASPHALT, K in 9d,  SERK, C in 13d COLT and O in 16d, PROA.  I was particularly confused by the HKCO sequence appearing in the run of missing wordplay letters.  I should have read the preamble more carefully as it didn’t used the word ‘clue’ when saying ‘In order, these words ….’  I finally twigged that we should read the missing wordplay letters in reverse order leading to a fairly strong cryptic indication of SHERLOCK HOLMES.  Also at this point, the diagonal seemed to be resolving to THREE something.  A quick bit of internet searching revealed ‘The Adventure of the Missing THREEQUARTER” by Sir Arthur Conan-Doyle.  This tale is a short story featuring SHERLOCK HOLMES

Before adding the word THREEQUARTER down the diagonal, the grid filled as shown below;

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The final grid looked like this:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The title of MISSING is self-explanaory given the MISSING letters and the MISSING THREEQUARTER.

This may not have been Schadenfreude’s most difficult puzzle, but it was just right for an Inquisitor workout.

Across
No. Clue Wordplay Letter Answer Entry

Amended

1

 

Penny added to overdue church collection (6)

 

P (penny) + LATE (overdue)

 

 

 

PLATE (church collection)

 

PLATE

 

T-PLATE

 

5

 

Morag’s trifles rate poorly on board (6)

 

Anagram of (poorly) RATE contained in (on board) SS (steamship, a vessel on which passangers and crew are on board)

S (TRAE*) S

 

 

STRAES (Scottish [Morag] word for STRAWS [trifles])

 

STRAES

 

 

 

10

 

A friend to dismay once (6)

 

A + MATE (friend)

 

 

 

AMATE (archaic [once] word meaning dismay)

 

AMATE

 

HAMATE

 

11

 

A key that is securing pound (4)

 

IE (id est; that is) containing (securing) L (pound [sterling])

I (L) E

S

 

ISLE (key [low island or reef])

 

ISLE

 

 

 

12

 

A church honour (4)

 

A + CE (Church [of England])

 

 

 

ACE (one of the ‘honours’ in card games, along with Jack, Queen and King)

 

ACE

 

ACRE

 

14

 

Rough once like Provençal (5)

 

AS (like) + PR (Provençal)

 

E

 

ASPER (obsolete [once] word for rough)

 

ASPER

 

 

 

15

 

Large sum of money backing a stud in Perth (5)

 

POTS (a large sum of money) reversed (backing)

 

 

 

STOP (a stud on a football boot in Australia [Perth])

 

STOP

 

ESTOP

 

17

 

Inserts back street map at the front (7)

 

PLAN (map) + (ST [street] reversed [back])

PLAN TS<

 

 

PLANTS (inserts)

 

PLANTS

 

PLANETS

18

 

Vicar’s recycled source of fuel in Guernsey (5)

 

Anagram of (recycled) VICAR

 

 

 

VRAIC (a Channel Islands [Guernsey] name for seaweed, used for fuel and manure)

 

VRAIC

 

 

 

20

 

Short robe necessary in Samoa (5)

 

TALAR (a robe reaching the ankles) excluding the final letter (short) R

 

 

 

TALA (standard money unit [necessary] of Samoa)

 

TALA

 

TALAQ

 

23

 

Very handsome chap about fifty, featuring in gypsy dance (6)

 

A (about) + (L [roman numeral for fifty] contained in [featuring in] POLO [a Spanish gypsy dance])

A PO (L) LO

 

 

APOLLO (an extremely handsome young man)

 

APOLLO

 

 

 

25

 

Ours is beaten by the French arrangement of leaves (6)

 

Anagram of (is beaten) OURS + LA (one of the French forms of ‘the’)

ROSU* LA

 

 

ROSULA (a leaf-rosette; arrangement of leaves)

 

ROSULA

 

 

 

27

 

Estimate the value of jack turned over by east (5)

 

TAR (reference Jack TAR, sailor) reversed (turned over) + E (East)

RAT< E

 

 

RATE (estimate the value of)

 

RATE

 

URATE

 

29

 

Society has an intense dislike for affectedly smart people (5)

S (society) + UGS (feels loathing; has an intense dislike for)

 

M

 

SMUGS (affectedly smart people)

 

SMUGS

 

 

 

31

 

Scratches close to his claws (7)

 

S (final letter of [close to] HIS) + CRABS (claws)

 

 

 

SCRABS (scratches)

 

SCRABS

 

SCARABS

 

34

 

A wine bank beside the other turning (5)

 

AS (ÅS [kame; esker]; bank) + (IT [sexual intercourse]; the other) reversed [turning])

AS TI<

 

 

ASTI (Italian white wine)

 

ASTI

 

ASTIR

 

36

 

John’s underworld burdens (5)

 

ADES (John Milton’s variant of HADES [underworld])

 

L

 

LADES (burdens)

 

LADES

 

 

 

37

 

Alchemist’s gold coin (4)

 

SOL (alchemist’s gold)

 

 

 

SOL (an old coin bearing a sun with rays)

 

SOL

 

STOL

 

38

 

An epitome of drunkenness out of time again (4)

 

A NEWT (reference the phrase ‘pissed as a NEWT‘; eptiome of drunkenness) excluding (out of) T (time)

 

 

 

ANEW (again)

 

ANEW

 

 

 

39

Least ugly upright slab (6)

 

Anagram of (ugly) LEAST

 

 

 

STELA (an upright stone slab or tablet)

 

STELA

 

STELAE

 

40

 

For this reason destroy her first (6)

 

HER + EAT (destroy)

 

 

 

HEREAT (for this reason)

 

HEREAT

 

 

 

41

 

A thrash engineers love (6)

 

A + DO (party; thrash) + RE ([Royal] Engineers)

 

 

 

ADORE (love)

 

ADORE

 

ADORER

 

Down            
No. Clue Wordplay   Answer Entry Amended

1

 

Loose garments for women, not with knockers! (8)

 

WRAPPERS (loose outer garments for women) excluding (not) W (with)

 

 

 

RAPPERS (knockers)

 

RAPPERS

 

TRAPPERS

 

2

 

Grandfather’s picked up a bomb? (5)

 

AVAL (relating to a grandfather; grandfather’s) reversed (picked up)

 

 

 

LAVA (‘bomb’ can be defined as a rounded mass of LAVA thrown out by a volcano)

 

LAVA

 

LARVA

 

3

 

Rats chewed up a length of the ankle (7)

 

Anagram of (chewed up) RATS + A + L (length)

TARS* A L

 

 

TARSAL (of the ankle or the bones forming the foot)

 

TARSAL

 

TARSEAL

 

4

 

Worry about tense state (4)

 

EAT (worry) containing (about) T (tense)

E (T) AT

 

 

ÉTAT (French word for state or rank)

 

ÉTAT

 

 

 

5

 

Eminent scientists probing the main membrane (6)

 

RS (Royal Society – a UK body of eminent scientists) contained in (probing) SEA (the main)

 

O

 

SEROSA (a watery membrane)

 

SEROSA

 

 

 

6

 

Ventilating door fault (4)

 

TRAP (a ventilating door in a mine)

 

 

 

TRAP (a fault [in mining]) double definition

 

TRAP

 

 

 

7

 

Phosphorus found in a pungent material once used as cement (7)

P (chemical symbol for phosophorus) contained in (found in) (A + SALT [pungent wit; pungent material])

 

H

 

ASPHALT (material once used as cement)

 

ASPHALT

 

 

 

8

 

Lime tree finally developed a resinous substance (5)

 

Anagram of (developed) (LIME and E [last letter of {finally} TREE])

 

 

 

ELEMI (a fragrant resionous substance)

 

ELEMI

 

 

 

9

 

Earl wearing Sir Iain’s shirt (4)

 

E (earl) contained in (wearing) SR (abbreviation for SIR)

S (E) R

K

 

SERK (Scottish [Iain's] word for shirt)

 

SERK

 

 

 

13

 

Beat old subaltern (4)

O (old) + LT (lieutenant; subaltern [military officer below the rank of captain])

 

C

 

COLT (to beat)

 

COLT

 

 

 

16

 

Stern missing from a lighter boat (4)

 

PRAM (flat-bottomed Dutch or Baltic lighter) excluding the final letter (stern missing) M

 

O

 

PROA (a Malay sailing-boat or rowing-boat)

 

PROA

 

 

19

 

Ornamental support against part of the foot (8)

 

CON (against) + SOLE (part of the foot)

 

 

 

CONSOLE (an ornamental device resembling a bracket; ornamental support)

 

CONSOLE

 

CONSOLER

 

21

A heavenly body reflected colour in parts (7)

 

A + SUN (heavenly body) + (RED [colour] reversed [reflected])

A SUN DER<

 

 

ASUNDER (into parts)

 

ASUNDER

 

 

 

22

 

America imports German fruit boxes (4)

US ([United States of] America] containing (imports) G (German)

U (G) S

L

 

LUGS (boxes for carrying fruit or vegetables)

 

LUGS

 

 

 

24

 

William’s treasured priest is educated (7)

PR (priest) + IS + ED (educated)

 

 

 

PRISED (Shakesperean form of PRIZED [treasured])

 

PRISED

 

PRAISED

 

26

 

Help god to stay in Scotland (6)

 

AS (a Norse god, an inhabitant of Asgard) + SIST (Scottish word for stay)

 

 

 

ASSIST (help)

 

ASSIST

 

 

 

28

 

Earl died up river (4)

E (earl) + (OB (obit, Latin [died] reversed [up; down clue])

 

R

 

EBRO (river in Spain)

 

EBRO

 

 

 

30

 

Scots complain about note penned by me (5)

(A + N [note]) contained in (penned by) ME

M (A N) E

E

 

MEANE (Scottish word for moan; Scots complain)

 

MEANE

 

 

32

 

Carcinogen warning with mass exodus (5)

ALARM (warning) excluding (exodus) M (mass)

 

 

 

ALAR (the chemical daminozide, formerly used as a spray to prevent blemishes and to delay the ripening of apples, but withdrawn when discovered to be carcinogenic; carcinogen)

 

ALAR

 

ALTAR

 

33

 

Dull priest’s vestment turned up (4)

ALB priest’s long white sleeved vestment) reversed (turned up; down clue)

BLA<

H

 

BLAH (dull)

 

BLAH

 

 

 

34

 

A continent nursemaid (4)

 

AIA (in India and other former British territories, a waiting-maid or nursemaid)

 

S

 

ASIA (continent)

 

ASIA

 

 

 

35

 

Goodbye cheers surrounding northbound army (4)

 

TA (thankyou; cheers) containing (surrounding) (TA [Territorial Army] reversed [northbound; down clue)

T (AT<) A

 

 

TA-TA (goodbye)

 

TATA

 

 

 

 

5 Responses to “Inquisitor 1253: Missing by Schadenfreude”

  1. Liz Geear says:

    Thanks Duncan and Schadenfreude.
    Modus operandi: Read the preamble carefully. Solve the clues. Re-read the preamble more carefully than the first time!
    I spent too much time searching for a location instead of the position.
    Enjoyable stuff, as usual.

  2. HolyGhost says:

    The thematic work referred to in the preamble is “The Return of Sherlock Holmes”, a collection of stories of which “The Adventure of the Missing Three-Quarter” is one. Hence the missing letters from the wordplay do, in clue order, give a cryptic indication of the work.

    A bit on the easy side, this week. But thanks to setter & blogger.

  3. John Lowe says:

    Hi Duncan

    You have a misplaced O in 37 across in your first diagram…

    Thanks for the blog!

  4. PeeDee says:

    Thanks Duncan and Schadenfeude. This was my first go at an Iquisitor and I got most of it but was unable to pull it all together at the end. I think I was was thrown by mistakenly entering WRAPPERS instead of TRAPPERS at 1 down.

    The lessons I learned for next time:

    1) make a couple of photocopies of the grid before starting, I could barely read my copy by the end

    2) read the instructions VERY carefully, read every single word twice over

    3) make sure I am 100% certain of what I enter in the grid, the crossing letters will not highlight mistakes in the way they would in a standard cryptic

  5. Liz Geear says:

    PeeDee, glad you have taken the IQ plunge. Persevere!

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