Never knowingly undersolved.

Guardian 25,844 / Chifonie

Posted by Eileen on January 14th, 2013


It’s Chifonie, rather than Rufus, who’s providing today’s customary ‘gentle start’ to the week, with plenty of anagrams and charades but no cryptic definitions, as far as I can see  – and a mini-mini-theme of drink-makers! Beautifully smooth surfaces throughout. Thank you, Chifonie, for a quick but pleasant solve.

Definitions are underlined.


1 Deliver complete apparatus for nothing
SET [complete apparatus] + FREE [for nothing]

5 Church one follows, if not in London
CH [church] + ELSE [if not] + A

9 Called after parking accident
P [parking] + RANG [called]

10 Uproar about bodily appetites may be life-threatening
RIOT [uproar] round FLESH [bodily appetites]

11 Unaccomplished representation of temple icon
anagram [re-presentation] of TEMPLE ICON

12 The last word in steam engines
hidden in steAM ENgines

14 Tolerate a knight in power, showing self-control
BEAR [tolerate] + A N [knight, in chess notation] in FORCE [power]

18 Rapid cement breaking up in a corner
anagram [breaking up] of RAPID CEMENT

21 Love taking in a fixer
NIL [love] round A

22 Angry at having sick around the place
DISEASED [sick] around PL [place]

25 Humiliation in a lowly room
A BASEMENT [lowly room]

26 Oscar’s green — that’s obvious
O [oscar] + VERT [green]

27 Hot saké prepared? That’s a classic!
anagram [prepared] of HOT SAKÉ, for the classic horse race, run at Epsom

28 Gather round useless drink-maker
INFER [gather] round US [abbreviation for unserviceable – useless]


1 Girl making concession having to hurry
SOP [concession] + HIE [hurry]

2 Suspicion about player’s dazed state
TRACE [suspicion] round N [player in bridge]

3 Urchin has fish served up on a plain cake
reversal [served up] of GAR [fish] + A MUFFIN [a plain cake]

4 Recruit first needs to be introduced to revolutionary teaching
N [first letter of needs – which some won’t like!] in reversal [revolutionary] of LORE [teaching]

5 Eerie fact about drink-maker
anagram [about] of EERIE FACT

6 Tailor loses top for jug
[s]EWER [tailor minus first letter – top]

7 Old Bob’s friend Ann is a composer
S [shilling – ‘old bob’] + CHUM [friend] + ANN

8 Was there when a Rechabite expired
A TT [a teetotaller – Rechabite] + ENDED [expired]

13 Twin effort goes wrong — it’s damaged beyond repair
anagram [goes wrong] of TWIN EFFORT

15 Facility to see above one’s head
READ [see] + I [one] + NESS [head]

16 Old enclosure and shed found in excavation
O [old] + PEN [enclosure] + CAST [shed]

17 Think of friend about to revise
MATE [friend] round EDIT [revise]

19 Property like flats
AS [like] + SETS [flats – as in stage scenery, I think]

20 Computer program overturned current operations research
reversal [overturned] of TIDE [current] + OR [operations research]

23 Cherubs set it up
PUT [set] + reversal [up] of IT

24 Star, for a very long time, in the ascendant
V [very] + reversal [in the ascendant] of AGE [long time]
I’ll confess to having wasted time looking for a star called SEGA. :-(

23 Responses to “Guardian 25,844 / Chifonie”

  1. NeilW says:

    Thanks, Eileen. Me too on SEGA!

    OR didn’t exactly leap to mind as an abbreviation for “operations research” but I found it in Chambers – actually in first place.

    I’ve long commented that Chifonie should be a Monday setter and so was delighted to see him appearing today. Curiously, I thought this a little harder than his usual fare but perhaps that was because it was Monday! :)

  2. PeterJohnN says:

    CHELSEA went in first, was then able to complete puzzle without making a fresh start. Failed to parse 15d READINESS. Don’t like the ‘s much. Same goes for 26a (Oscar’s green).

    Thanks Eileen and Chifonie.

  3. PeterJohnN says:

    Meant to add that “first in need” rather than “first needs” might have been a better wording in the clue for the clue to 4d ENROL.

  4. orange says:

    Operations Research is a branch of Maths/Stats, commonly known as OR

  5. NormanLinFrance says:

    The twinkling lights of Sega blinded me for a while as well.

  6. fearsome says:

    Thanks Eileen and Chifonie
    I was slow to complete the SE corner and was trying to justify Distressed for some time

  7. tupu says:

    Thanks Eileen and Chifonie

    A pleasanr puzzle despite the tiniest of niggles about the double use of edit and of words ending in ‘ment’ (triple if one counts ‘cement’.

    I too got caught up on Sega – I meant to check it but got diverted and forgot to do so.

    I ticked 10a, 25a, 28a,and 16d.

    PeterJohnN @3 I think the apostrophe in 26a make more sense as standing for ‘is’. I’m less sure about 15d which might even possibly be better as ‘below one’s head’.

  8. liz says:

    Thanks, Eileen. re SEGA – me too!

    Enjoyable puzzle. Thanks Chifonie.

  9. Trailman says:

    One of the few days I can feel smug, having recalled VEGA from old days with star charts. SEGA is a great distractor as it’s a well-known video game company; its logo is all-pervasive, if only subliminally.

  10. Rowland says:

    I didn’t like 5a and 10a because thedefinitons are in the wrong tense, 4d for that ‘first needs’ error, and 7d for the way the grammar doesn’t quite work out. But this was still all right, and a change from what we usually get, which can be a bit samey.


  11. chas says:

    Thanks to Eileen for the blog.

    I was quite happy that ‘first needs’ gives N. We have often seen first used in this way.

    I did trip up over ‘lowly room’ in 25a. I got cellar stuck in my mind and failed to remove it :(

  12. Robi says:

    Thanks to Chifonie for a different Monday with anagrams helping the solve.

    Thanks to Eileen for the professional blog; I can’t see the problem with ‘first’ in 4 – it, with ‘at first’ and ‘foremost,’ are shown as Head indicators in my Chambers Xword dic.

    I’m not sure I understand Rowly @10’s first comment. The tenses look fine to me. 7d might have been improved by not repeating ‘Ann’ in clue and answer; perhaps the last name of an Ann could have been used instead, but it is a minor point.

  13. Derek Lazenby says:

    All good clean fun. Being a heathen I didn’t know Rechabite so had to look it up, then went “ah”. It made a pleasant change but I don’t think it would stand being used too often.

  14. Jezza says:

    I enjoyed this puzzle. Thanks to Chifonie, and to Eileen for the notes.

    Glad to see I was not the only person who tried to justify SEGA.

  15. Dave Ellison says:

    Thanks, Eileen and Chifonie.

    Having worked in OR, that was no problem. I am a little surprised at Vega proving so troublesome – Brendan included it on Feb 21 2012; and Vega (in Lyra) is the fifth brightest star in the night sky, second brightest in the northern hemisphere.

  16. Eileen says:

    Hi Dave Ellison

    It wasn’t so much that VEGA caused a problem – I remembered it when the penny dropped – as that a reversal of AGES, for ‘a very long time’, came more readily to mind than the slightly more complicated construction.

  17. SeanDimly says:

    Every year, without fail, Patrick Moore would talk about the “summer triangle” of Deneb, Altair and Vega – three lovely bright stars that, for people in the northern hemisphere, are high overhead during the short summer nights.
    Thanks Chifonie and Eileen.

  18. brucew_aus says:

    Thanks Chifonie and Eileen

    Good opening puzzle for the week and must confess that I stumbled with SEGA instead of VEGA through laziness in the justification. Same sloth saw me parse N for knight rather than the bridge player in 2d despite that being used in 14a. I guess it shows that even though some puzzles may be easier, they shouldn’t be done with any less respect.

    CAFETIERE was new – referred to them as coffee plungers here – funny how once they tasted acceptable!

  19. Morpheus says:

    Another Sega Vega stumble here. Usually I’d hit google but it fitted in so neatly with The Oaks and I vaguely recalled having heard of Sega. Unfortunately I now realise it’s a computer games company, not a star…

    Otherwise didn’t find this too straightforward but all very fair and smooth.

  20. Brendan (not that one) says:

    Nice and easy as ever for Monday. Nice to have a change from Rufus though.

    Sega was also in my constellation for a while.

    I also don’t understand Rowland @10 in his tense objection.

    Thanks to Chifonie and Eileen

  21. RCWhiting says:

    Thanks all
    How dare the crossword editor break all the guidelines (sic DL) by giving us this delightfully tricky puzzle on a Monday………yes, on a Monday.
    I just couldn’t bring myself to write in ‘readiness’ for the reasons given above.

  22. Huw Powell says:

    I parsed 7 a little differently since sometimes I forget to shift into British slang mode: “old Bob” for me was a reference to his first name, followed by S CHUM ANN, followed by the real definition.

    Nice puzzle for a Monday, isn’t that two weeks in a row without Rufus? Minor niggles here and there but nothing to shout about.

    Thanks for the puzzle Chifonie and for the blog, Eileen and the rest of you.

  23. HelenR says:

    We are just beginning to try the Guardian Cryptic after getting started on Quiptics and Everyman. We managed to finish this although we did solve it online rather than on paper (it helps to be able to “Check” answers we’re not sure of!).

    Thanks Eileen for your very clear explanations of how the clues work.

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