Never knowingly undersolved.

Enigmatic Variations 1053: Making a Point by Ifor (& Brat)

Posted by Dave Hennings on February 2nd, 2013

Dave Hennings.

No time this week for anything more than the bare bones as I’m in the process of moving house … for the second time in six months (and the last time in at least ten years I hope).

EV 1053The extra letters in the wordplay are the vowels, in alphabetic sequence and repeated five times. A vowel must be added to one word in each of the other clues. In both cases, the extra letter is added between two consonants. The thematic word is SVARABHAKTI, and can be found in the main NW-SE diagonal. It is defined as “development of a vowel between consonants”, so (A VOWEL)* between CC (two consonants) can be found in both the first and last columns.

A fairly tricky puzzle from Ifor (& Brat) with a bit of fun at the end. An interesting word!

Unfinished business: In the original blog, I could not explain 17dn JOHNIAN — assuming that 15dn and 20dn have extra wordplay letters of A and E respectively, then the clue needs a vowel to be added between two consonants. But thanks to D Reynolds @2 for clearing it up.

Definition in clue
X = extra letter in wordplay
a = missing letter in clue
ABC* = anagram
ABC< = reversal
abCDef = hidden

No Entry Extra
Clue and Explanation
1 SOFA That will do fine — one member of three-piece suites (4)
SO (that will do) + F (fine) + A (one)
5 WITHIN A Behind the scenes, call for attention interrupting council towards the end (6)
HI (call for attention) in WITAN (council)
10 MAHARANI Raja‘s partner acting about ran him out (8)
(A (acting) A (about) RAN HIM)*
11 ADAPTED E Suitable couple of advertisements, safe right away to be inserted (7)
PETER (safe) – R (right) inserted in AD AD (two advertisemnets)
12 AESC I Aged, thus elderly symbol (4)
AE (aged) + SIC (thus)
13 WAUR Tiree’s worse week — every other one in January (4)
W (week) + jAnUaRy
14 RED SNOW O Redecorate immediately after sun’s discoloured blanket (7, 2 words)
REDO + NOW (immediately) after S (sun)
16 LYNX U Stars only when topless upset old-fashioned wife (4)
([O]NLY)* + UX; stars = constellation
17 JHALA A Bit of movement returning French to the pilgrimage (5)
(A LA (to the, French) + HAJ (pilgrimage)<
19 TAP BOLT E Fixer that screws up top athlete in pursuit of record (7, 2 words)
BOLT (top athlete, Usain) after TAPE (record)
21 VINES Bines six without turning round (5)
VI (six) + SEN (without)<
23 CAME Rotated traces of early mediaeval altar cloth turned up (4)
(heads of Early Medaeval Altar Cloth)<
25 EASTERN I Festival popular in the Orient (7)
EASTER (festival) + IN (popular)
26 ANAL Collection left about opening of bowels (4)
ANA (collection) + L (left)
28 COTH O Start indicating similarity to hard function (4)
CO (prefix indicating similarity) + TO + H (hard)
30 DRINK TO U Toast whilst having leaders in Kremlin take office usurping government? (7, 2 words)
DURING (whilst) with leaders of Kremlin Take Office instead of G (government)
32 GREY-COAT A The old tat brought back to clothe student (8, hyphenated)
(YE (the, old) RAG (tat))< + COAT (clothe)
33 HALLOW E Robust and humble elderly saint (6)
HALE (robust) + LOW (humble)
34 HAJI Debut of impoverishment with god returned to lead pilgrim (4)
I (start of Impoverishment) + JAH< (god) in front
No Entry Extra
Clue and Explanation
1 SCAW I Cape set upon a fellow’s back (4)
SIC (set) + A W (fellow’s last letter)
2 FLAUNT O Show off following stale gossip (6)
FOL (following) AUNT (gossip, old word)
3 AMP U What raises the volume rearing mountain lion (3)
4 SATRAPS A The devil speaks in song for new tyrants (7)
SATAN (devil) with RAPS (speaks in song) instead of N (new)
5 WHEELBARROW E What one worker might push? People in general list how in some places (11)
WE (people in general) + HEEL (list) + BARROW (how, dialectic; both words mean low hill or tumulus);
6 TRASH I Refuse retrospective of fellow’s paintings (5)
(HIS (of fellow) + ART (paintings))<
7 HAE Argyll’s own heathen abandoning the northern bogus (3)
8 INSOLE O Oxford’s downtrodden interior is entertaining no cry of triumph (6)
IS holding NO + OLE (cry of triumph); ‘Oxford’ refers to the shoe
9 V-DAY U Irish paramilitaries in five year celebration of triumph (4, hyphenated)
UDA in V (five) Y (year)
15 WAVE A Sway‘s easiest victory achieved when all heads turned up (4)
(heads of Easiest Victory Achieved When)<
16 LOVE Nothing fell over storing (4)
in felL OVEr
17 JOHNIAN A Student sweetheart from St Andrew’s? Scotsman’s daughter in hand (7)
JO is sweetheart in St Andrew’s, and the rest is (IN HAND)* – D, but so?
JO (sweetheart, Scottish) + HAND with IAN (Scotsman) replacing D (daughter); thanks to DR @2 below
18 KIA-ORA One overcome by spirit mouths cheers in place of wahines (6, hyphenated)
I (one) overcome (ie surrounded by) KA (spirit) + ORA (mouths); ‘wahines’ are Maori women
20 TANKIA E Thanks to Amnesty International, southern state put up boat people (6)
TA (thanks) + (AI (Amnesty International) + KEN (Kentucky, southern state)<
22 ETHYL I Cleaning fluid inhibiting knock put up petrol in US (5)
(LYE (cleaning fluid) holding HIT (knock)<
24 MATT O Dull mother and child (4)
MA (mother) + TOT
27 LOCI Spots cloister, soaks up forbidden reset (4)
(CLOISTER – RETS< (soaks))*
29 TEL Solid pile of derelict houses in Arabic heart of wasteland (3)
central part of wasTELand
31 NTH U Arbitrary position of tough finish to eighteenth (3)
NUT (tough, noun) + H (last letter of eighteentH)


4 Responses to “Enigmatic Variations 1053: Making a Point by Ifor (& Brat)”

  1. John says:

    JOHNIAN looks like it should be JO + IAN outside H[E]N, where hen and daughter are used as terms for women! It doesn’t help at all I know as TANKIA must work as you suggest. I didn’t see the puzzle, Dave, but St Andrews doesn’t have an apostrophe so I don’t know if that is an error or telling you something.

  2. D. Reynolds says:

    I found it very difficult to keep track of all of the elements in this one.Your breakdown is excellent but you have a dropped ‘a’ and an extra ‘A’ in the same place [15dn]. The extra ‘A’ is needed for 17dn –
    [scotsman] IAN takes the place of D [daughter] in HAND = HANIAN. So it’s JOH[a]NIAN.
    I enjoyed this one [through gritted teeth].Thanks.
    D. Reynolds.

  3. Dave Hennings says:

    Thanks very much D. Obviously I found it difficult to keep track of everything as well!

  4. Ifor says:

    Dave – thanks for the blog. I think you were moving last time you blogged an Ifor EV, by the way. Clearly something will have to give!

    We’d tried to arrange matters so that “keeping track” might perhaps have been more straightforward than it first seems. In fact all entries with a pair of consecutive consonants (and only those entries) had w/p generating the extra A/E/I/O/U (between the first such pair where there was more than one) while vowel insertions needed in other clues all involved either the first or the last words.

    As to St Andrews / Andrew’s – mea culpa.

    Finally – SVARABHAKTI was as new to me as I suspect it was to many solvers. I happened to see it while thumbing through Chambers in search of a solution in another puzzle. As you say, an interesting word. I certainly wasn’t aware that linguistics drew on Sanskrit for technical terms.


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