Never knowingly undersolved.

Financial Times no.14,214 by Loroso

Posted by Ringo on January 17th, 2013


Goodness, I had a struggle with this. Loroso’s extensive vocabulary (or, perhaps, my limited vocabulary), a few misleading indicators (sandwiches, pockets) and a general brain-failure on my part combined to make this one of the toughest solves the FT has provided in a good long while. No doubt plenty of you cruised through it without a qualm – such is the way of these things. Anyway, in the end I had no complaints: this was a clever, interesting puzzle, so thank-you, Loroso (he said through gritted teeth…).


9. SCRIVENER  Sc [scilicet, viz] + riven [torn apart] + ER [Elizabeth Regina, royal]

10. AGORA  Ago [in the past] + alternate letters of aReA

11. INFERNO  Infer [reason] + no

12. SPARTAN  RTA [Road Traffic Accident, crash involving vehicles] within span [bridge]

13. TAR  Ta [cheers, thank-you] + r(oad) to give tar in the sense of a sailor or ‘hearty’

14. HYMENOPTERA  Anagram of me trap honey

17. PLAID  Double definition

18. RYA  Ry [railway, line] + a

19. ORPIN  Or [gold, yellow] + pin [spike]

21. MAKE WHOOPEE  Ma [mother] + Kew [garden] + ho [house] + op [opus, work] + e(xtremely) e(arly)

23. END  Hidden within christENDom

25. REMOVAL  M(arshal) within re [on] + Oval [cricket ground]

27. DRAWING  Win [carry off] within drag [yank]

28. TANGO  Tan [tawny] + go [travel] to give the letter T in the NATO phonetic alphabet

29. STRUCTURE  St [street, way] + RUC [Royal Ulster Constabulary] + anagram of true


1. ASSIST  As [when] + Is [one’s] within st [street, way]


3. OVERSHADOWS  O [old] + anagram of dwarves oh

4. UNDO  Hidden in roUND Of

5. PRISON CAMP  Son [boy] + c [circa, about] within primp [tidy]

6. PAPA  Double definition: Papa is the letter P in the NATO phonetic alphabet

7. BOTTLE  Double definition, with bottle in the sense of courage, aplomb, cool

8. MAINTAIN  Ain’t [are not] within main [sea, deep]

15. MORE OR LESS  More minus (less) or leaves me… bravo, Loroso

16. PROVENANCE  Na [chemical symbol of sodium] within Provence [area of Cote d’Azure]

17. POMFRETS  [piano, soft] + M [mass] within anagram of softer

20. PREVIOUS  Rev [reverend, churchman] within pious [very good]

22. KIMONO  Odd letters from KnItmono [single]

24. DOGLEG  D [daughter] + ogle [look] + g [good]

26. VTOL  Reversal of lo [see] + TV [television, box] to give Vertical Take Off and Landing…

27. DARK  (Crosswor)d + ark [craft]


9 Responses to “Financial Times no.14,214 by Loroso”

  1. Eileen says:

    Thanks, Ringo, for the blog – especially fot DOGLEG, which I didn’t get.

    Great stuff, as usual – but I wouldn’t say it was a cruise without a qualm!

    Favourite clues: OVERSHADOW, MORE OR LESS and PREVIOUS, I think, among a number of close contenders.

    [After getting the answer to 26dn, I tried for a minute or two to justify LOT = box. :-( ]

    Many thanks, as always, to Loroso, for a very enjoyable challenge.

  2. mike04 says:

    Until the penny dropped at UNDO, I found the NW corner difficult to penetrate today.
    This was certainly quite a challenge, but a most entertaining one. Thanks, Loroso.

    And thanks, too, Ringo. For PRO FORMA I went for FORM contained in PROA with
    ‘being paid for before dispatch’ or ‘before shipping’ as the definition.

    I also tried to justify LOT = box in 26dn!

  3. crypticsue says:

    I used to fondly imagine that Loroso was user-friendly Anax but I don’t think so any more. This one put up quite a fight but as others have said enjoyable and entertaining too. Some lovely clues in there in the middle of all the ‘what is he on about’ clues. Thanks Lorosoo and Ringo too.

  4. shuchi says:

    Thanks Ringo. I’m endlessly amazed at Loroso’s inventiveness. Agree with Eileen’s choice of favourite clues, I thought MORE OR LESS was especially good.

    After getting the hang of Loroso’s distinctive noun-verb switch trick with indicators, his puzzles don’t seem as tough as they did in the beginning! Some words/abbreviations like VTOL, RUC, RTA were new to me, thanks for explaining them.

  5. MikeC says:

    Thanks Ringo and Loroso. I was pleased to finish this enjoyable challenge. Didn’t parse 26d correctly, though, and I’m still not quite sure how 2d (PRO FORMA) works. Can anyone set me right, please?

  6. flashling says:

    @MikeC #5 Form in PROA (see todays Indy blog comments)

  7. anax says:

    I usually offer more by way of additional comment but, far more than is the norm, the current workload is bonkers, so I’ll just say thank you all for your comments and to Ringo for a typically impressive blog.

  8. ernie says:

    I think that we need ca for circa in 5D rather than c, otherwise we are a letter short in the parsing.

    There is a typo in the answer to 3D. It should be overshadow (10 letters).

    VTOL was also new to me.

    Thanks to Ringo and Loroso.

  9. fearsome says:

    thanks Ringo and Loroso
    I was well beaten by this one

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