Never knowingly undersolved.

Independent 8,186 / Dac

Posted by RatkojaRiku on January 9th, 2013


Today sees my monthly blogging encounter with Dac, as usual on a Wednesday.

Dac never disappoints, pitching his puzzles consistently at the same medium-difficulty level. This puzzle was trickier than the average Dac for me, not least on account of the vocabulary being more challenging than normal: 18D, 19, 23 and 27 were all new to me, as was the play at 22.

I feel that I have teased out most of the wordplay, but I am not sure about PR for “paper” in 9 – have I got the wrong end of the stick here?

I enjoyed many of today’s clues, and if I had to single out one it would be 24, for the multiple removal of “e”, closely followed by the composite clue at 4A, for its smooth surface, and by 1D, for its smooth surface and discreet definition.

*(…) indicates an anagram

1   PRANG P (=car park sign) + *(GRAN); “turns” is anagram indicator
4   ANTIPASTO AN (=article) + TIP (=advice) + AS TO (=regarding)
9   PRESERVER RESERVE (=book, i.e. as verb) in PR (=paper)
10   SHARD S (=small) + HARD (=solid); the Shard is a new 75-storey skyscraper in London
11   ORDINANCE OR (=soldiers, i.e. other ranks) + [IN (=home) in DANCE (=steps)]
13   OMEGA O (=appeal, as in O come all ye faithful!) + MEGA<n> (=Welsh girl; “unnamed” means letter “n” – for name – is dropped); definition is character, i.e. letter
14   GLOVE PUPPET Cryptic definition: “no strings attached” refers to fact that glove   puppets are not operated with strings
16   MAD Reversal (“passed round”) of <e>DAM; “not English (=E)” means letter “e” dropped
17   SAT SAT is “posed for artist” AND “twenty-four hours”, i.e. abbreviation of Saturday
18   BREADWINNER BREA<k> (=rest; “short” means last letter dropped) + [W (=wife) in DINNER (=meal)]
21   FREDA F (=fellow) + RED (=embarrassed) + A
22   SAINT JOAN J<unta> (“leader” means first letter only) in *(A NATION’S); “terrible”   is anagram indicator; Saint Joan is a 1923 play by George Bernard Shaw, dealing with the life and trial of Joan of Arc, hence “drama”
24   BRATS B<e>RAT<e>S (=chides); “completely lacking in energy (=E)” means all letter e’s are dropped
25   PALPITATE PIT (=fruit stone) in PALATE (=part of mouth)
26   DELICATES *(LADIES ETC); “ordered” is anagram indicator
27   NOYAU Reversed (“rejected”) and hidden (“in”) in “TorqUAY ONe”; noyau is a   liqueur made from brandy flavoured with bitter almonds or peach kernels
1   POP SONG P (=piano, in music) + OPS (=works) + ON (=being performed at) + G<lyndebourne> (“opening of” means first letter only); the definition   is (to sing a) “number”
2   AMEND AM (=America) + END (=objective); “America’s” is to be read as “America has”
3   GREENIE EINE (=a German, i.e. the German for “a”) + ERG (=work unit); “help up” indicates a (here total) reversal
4   ADVENTURESS [VENT (=slit) + U (=you said, i.e. homophone of you)] in [A + DRESS (=gown)]
5   TOR Hidden (“exposed”) in “sTORm”
6   PASS OUT Double definition
7   STATESMEN TES (SET=arranged; “to turn up” indicates vertical reversal) in STAMEN   (=part of flower)
8   OLD MAID Double definition: “miss” is to be understood as an unmarried woman
12   ESPADRILLES E (=European) + SPA (=health centre) + DRILLES (homophone – we’re told – of “drills”=trains)
15   ON THE NAIL N (=indefinite number) in *(IN A HOTEL); “managed” is anagram   indicator
17   SOFA BED FO<lk> (“50% of” means half of letters only are used) in DEBAS<e> (=humble; “mostly” means last letter dropped); “put up” indicates (here total) vertical reversal
18   BRASSIC BRASSIC<a> (=the Savoy, etc, i.e. cabbage genus; “not enough”   means last letter dropped); brassic is “having little money”, broke and comes from the Cockney rhyming slang boracic lint (for skint)
19   ISTRIAN IS + *(TRAIN); “out” is anagram indicator; Istria is a peninsula mainly belonging to Croatia
20   RONDEAU R (=right) + ON + DEAU (homophone – “sounded” – of “do”=note)
23   ORACY AC (=account) in <t>ORY (=Conservative; “initially lacking” means first letter dropped)
25   POT Empty pint, i.e. O (=nothing) in PT (=pint)

5 Responses to “Independent 8,186 / Dac”

  1. Raich says:

    paper = pr abbreviation is given in Collins dict.

  2. Rowland says:

    Nice to see the subtraction done well at 24. Another good Dac!


  3. flashling says:

    Thanks Raich as I was wondering about 9ac too, struggled a bit in SE corner today, cheers RR & Dac as ever.

  4. Wil Ransome says:

    As good as ever it seems. ISTRIAN and BRASSIC were new to me, neither of them in Chambers. In 9ac for a long time I thought the book was RV and was trying to see how a pre-seer was a newspaper.

  5. RatkojaRiku says:

    Thanks, Raich, for confirming the abbreviation – it wasn’t in my Collins, but I expect I don’t have a big enough edition.

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