Posted by Eileen on December 12th, 2012
What looked for a while like a typically Araucarian mixture of obscurity and straightforwardness, with a few liberties thrown in, turned out to have more going on than I realised.
Definitions are underlined.
5,20 Wall to speak directly to 10 5 down 21
BARRIER [wall] + UTTER [speak]
Please see the end of the blog for further comment on this clue
6 Little fellow and little fool keeping time
SIMP [little fool – short for simpleton, which I hadn’t met before] round [keeping] HR [hour – time]
9,24 Exploiting queen when unconscious, point to close relation
USING [exploiting] ER queen in [COMA [‘when unconscious’ – I know not everyone will like it but I do!] + N [point]
10,4 Air display (and not the Navy’s) with pet food
NOR [and not] THE RN [the navy] + LIGHTS [pet food]
11 Cutter also produces sound
sounds like adds [also produces]
12 Able to grasp things concerning birds in big building
RE HENS [concerning birds] in PILE [big building]
13 Work with mouse to contribute largely to 66 at bingo?
CLICK CLICK would be most of CLICKETY CLICK – the bingo call for 66
18 Big building where ringers see and hear about bows put back right
I thought I was going to have to call for help in parsing this one: it took a while [bowing and scraping? fiddle bows scraping?] then light dawned: it’s SKYPE [where ringers see and hear] round a reversal [put back] of ARCS [bows] + R [right]
21 Date in Rome for fishes
22 Sweet William, say, bringing incense to goddess shortly
DIAN[a] [goddess shortly] + THUS [incense]
I knew THUS was Latin for incense but didn’t know of it in English, except in its derivativees, thurible and thurifer, but Chambers [not Collins] has thus = frankincense
Sweet William is a species of dianthus, hence the ‘say’
23 Religious building goes ahead
double / cryptic definition
25 Singularly little money for butter?
double / cryptic definition: peanuts is a small amount of money, hence the saying, ‘If you pay peanuts, you get monkeys’ and peanuts are made into peanut butter, which is rather like Marmite [or this clue] – you either love it or hate it!
1 People in support through love of magician
PROS [people in support] + PER [through] + O [love] for the magician in ‘The Tempest’
2 Snatch leather with soft coating
KID [leather] + NAP [soft coating]
3 Caught taking her water supply from river
C [caught] + HER + WELL [water supply] for a tributary of the Thames
5 Ladies of the Lakes?
7 Dad’s part has promise
8 Skimp on publicity for nude show with king to be model
anagram [show] of NUDE + REX [king] + POSE [be model]
14 Special occasion, maybe third in recess
anagram [maybe] of THIRD in BAY [recess]
15 Rodent getting a large portion about lunchtime
CHUNK [large portion] round IPM [1 pm – lunchtime] – an amusing clue but this word always makes me smile, because it reminds me of the daft exchange in a monastery kitchen, which I heard decades ago on ‘Round the Horne’ [and since in other places]: ‘Are you the fish-fryer?’ – ‘No, I’m the chip monk’
16 Sport of kings? I wonder
anagram [wonder] of KINGS I
17 Half 11 plenty for enthusiast
ZE [half of adZE – 11ac] + A LOT [plenty]
19 Divers don’t use towel?
SUN DRY – like tomatoes: a clever clue and another smile to end with
I’m afraid the name BARRIE RUTTER didn’t mean anything to me: I had to come back to 5,20 and get in by the back door, as it were. Fortunately, the clues to the contributory answers were relatively straightforward and cleverly produced NORTHERN BROADSIDES, which, again, was unfamiliar but led me to the man himself Barrie Rutter . When I saw photographs of him, I realised he’s one of those people you see fairly regularly on television and somehow don’t get to know their name – but I should have known him as the director of Lenny Henry’s ‘Othello’.
If I had been more familiar with him, I would have supplied the link without, perhaps, taking more notice but the first line of the Wikipedia entry told me that he was born on 12th December 1946. I noted the coincidence of today’s date – and then a whole bagful of pennies dropped: today is his 13ac th 14dn!
Many Happy Returns, Mr Rutter – I shall watch out for you!