Never knowingly undersolved.

Everyman 3455/23 December

Posted by Pierre on December 30th, 2012


A festive offering from Everyman – clearly clued and good fun as always.

There were a number of clues that related to the festive season – which I hope you all enjoyed.  Best wishes for 2013 to all Everyman aficionados.



cd  cryptic definition
dd  double definition
(xxxx)*  anagram
anagrind = anagram indicator
[x]  letter(s) missing


1 This will explain how to cook prime piece of rump, juicy piece
A charade of R for the first (‘prime’) letter of Rump and (PIECE)* with ‘juicy’ as the anagrind.

4 I appear in these French skating exhibitions
A charade of I plus an insertion of SHOW for ‘appear’ in CES for one of the French words for ‘these’.  Since I speak French, this was pretty much a write-in, but I’m not sure that your average solver would know enough French grammar to get the CES bit.  But that’s what crossing letters are for, I suppose.

9 Scholar holding old scarf
An insertion of O in BA for the feathery scarf.

10 With fervour, oppose religious drama
The play that depicts the other end of Jesus’ life is a charade of PASSION for ‘fervour’ and PLAY for ‘oppose’ (as in ‘Man U opposed Man City at Old Trafford today’).

12 Assess and buy shares
A dd.

13 Another military commander elected
A charade of AGA for ‘commander’ and IN for ‘elected’, but I’m not convinced that AGAIN and ‘another’ are synonymous, since they are different parts of speech.

14 Noel has to fight for a bonus
The first of our Christmassy clues: a charade of CHRISTMAS for ‘Noël’ and BOX for ‘fight’.

19 Head lad gets a part in panto
And our second: another charade of PRINCIPAL for ‘head’ and LAD for ‘boy’.

22 Call round for drummer
Probably the best-known drummer on the planet is a charade of RING and O.

23 Semi to let out – it may get you a few smackers
(SEMI TO LET)* with ‘out’ as the anagrind.

25 I am a creep in comic film
(I AM A CREEP IN)* with ‘comic’ as the anagrind.

26 Some Jamaica rum in vehicle
Hidden in JamiCA Rum.

27 Skipper perished at sea
Well, this was get the crossing letters and the anagram fodder and go from there.  (PERISHED)* with ‘at sea’ as the anagrind.  We are in insect territory: a ‘skipper’ is a butterfly and HESPERID is a word for any of the numerous small butterflies like the skipper from the family Hesperiidae.  Brilliant surface.

28 Tranquil piece of music a daughter brought out


1 Form of street dance associated with jerks?
A cd.

2 Bananas and nuts, they may be on the table at Christmas
More Christmas cheer: ‘bananas’, ‘nuts’ and ‘crackers’ are all words for ‘mad’.

3 Extremely perceptive foreign spy becomes a diarist
A charade of PE for the outside letters of PerceptivE and (SPY)*  ‘Foreign’ is the anagrind and the clue is referring to the famous diarist Samuel PEPYS.  ‘When a man is tired of London, he is tired of life.’

5 Caught with joint in prison
A slang word for ‘prison’ is a charade of C and LINK.

6 Father Christmas, very large, captured by artist in a California city
Père Noël making an appearance: a charade of SANTA plus an insertion of OS for ‘very large’ in RA for ‘artist’.

7 Broken coal in a fuel container
(COAL IN)* with ‘broken’ as the anagrind.

8 Hanging on’s no time for talking!

11 English artist’s wintry figure?
Referring to Isaac SNOWMAN (1874-1947).  No, I hadn’t heard of him either, but given the Christmas theme, it can’t be much else, can it?
Q:  What did one snowman say to the other snowman?
A:  ‘Is it just me, or can you smell carrot?’

15 One miser’s uncertain what vicars do?

16 Makes a mistake and falls over
A dd.

17 Old boy’s story about cold bar
A charade of OB for ‘old boy’ plus TALE around C.  ‘Bar’ is the definition.

18 Exclamation from pop star dropping ring
Referring to B[O]Y GEORGE, once of Culture Club but more renowned recently for spending time in 5dn.

20 Christmas decoration causing violent anger around Egypt’s capital
Back to Yuletide.  An insertion of E in WRATH.

21 Article takes shape identifying spirits
… from the realms of glory, perhaps.  A charade of AN and GELS.

23 I am to be found in Michigan tourist centre
An insertion of I AM in MI for the two-letter abbreviation for Michigan.

24 Subject, for example, in fiction
Another insertion of EG in LIE.  One of those strange words that can have opposite meanings.  From my SOED: ‘ the superior to whom a vassal owes allegiance and service'; ‘a vassal who owes feudal allegiance and service to a superior’.  Good job it’s archaic.

Many thanks to Everyman for our Christmas entertainment and for all his puzzles during 2012 (I know there’s still one to come today …)

3 Responses to “Everyman 3455/23 December”

  1. EB says:

    Thanks for the blog and the best wishes. Thanks to Everyman for this and all the other crosswords – keep up the good work!

    Minor point:

    ‘When a man is tired of London, he is tired of life.’ was famously said by Samuel Johnson not Pepys. Unless I’m missing the point and there’s more to your comment than I can see.

  2. Pierre says:

    No, you’re not missing the point, EB – of course it was Johnson! A bit of brainfade on my part …

  3. Robi says:

    Good Christmas fare.

    Thanks Pierre for the blog. HESPERID and SNOWMAN needed a bit of checking but, as always, immaculately clued.

    Happy New Year!

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