Never knowingly undersolved.

Independent 8220/Quixote

Posted by Pierre on February 18th, 2013


I suspect Quixote might have had a double dose of Weetabix for his breakfast before setting this one.  I found it a good deal more difficult than his usual Monday puzzle.

It’s all there and fairly clued, however, with some elegant surfaces and clever misdirections.  Only a couple of full anagrams though, which might have made it a bit more tricky to get started.  For once, I think I’ve nailed it all without recourse to asking the audience.


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

definitions are underlined


Strain that may be produced by work in farmer’s field
A dd.  ‘I’ve ricked my back’, and a (hay)RICK.

Unacceptable behaviour in unruly class
Another dd.

Gritty old woman in the family?  Upper-class miss
A charade of GRAN, U and LOSE.

10  German woman and daughter in act of deception
A charade of FRAU and D.

11  Beast, look, grabbing impala initially by the head
The setter’s prompting you to insert I for the first letter of ‘impala’ in LO! for ‘look’, and follow it with NESS for ‘head’.

12  Disappear furtively as cricketer that’s got dismissed
A dd cum cd.

13  Fellow who may be down to earth is a chap I trust somehow
(A CHAP I TRUST)* with ‘somehow’ as the anagrind.

17  Remark about drink shows good behaviour
An insertion of PORT in COMMENT.

20  Newspaper facing difficult situation in a relatively dark situation
A charade of the super soaraway SUN and SPOT.

22  Man in the mitre could be a monkey
A dd: apes and senior religious folk.  Surprised Quixote didn’t capitalise The Mitre, since there are plenty of pubs of that name.  Perhaps that’s not allowed.

23  Broadcasting organisation started by a new woman
A charade of A, N and ITA for the (now defunct) Independent Television Authority

24  Being behind, of low standard, tries to reform within
An insertion of (TRIES)* in POOR.

25  Intellectual may take a bashing at the breakfast table
A dd cum cd.  Don’t forget to use a free-range egg and spread Marmite thinly on your soldiers.

26  Talk about fashion item at Ascot
A charade of C for ‘circa’ or ‘about’ and HAT.


Feast fit for a king ending with cake
A charade of REGAL and E for the last letter of ‘cake’.  ‘Feast’ appears as a noun in the surface reading but as a verb in the solution.

Cleaner operating as underground transporter
A charade of CHAR for ‘cleaner’ and ON for ‘operating’.  In Greek mythology, CHARON is the ferryman who carries the souls of the newly deceased across the River Styx to Hades.  Nice work if you can get it.

Consecrate a set of Bibles supplied
Hidden in biBLES Supplied.

Items coming from such a period of austerity?
What we call in our house a reverse anagram thingy.  If you consider ‘difficult’ as an anagrind, then (TIMES)* becomes ‘items’.  I did not help myself by originally entering DESPERATE TIMES, which kind of also works.

Old scoundrel coming to old port may give musical rendition of story
A charade of O, RAT, O and RIO.

Think there must be change in pal
An insertion of EDIT in MATE.

Chemical ruined the soup perhaps
(THE SOUP PERHAPS)* with ‘ruined’ as the anagrind.  SUPERPHOSPHATES are chemicals used in fertilizers.

See component of boat bend on trips at sea
I spent too long convincing myself that it was S or U for ‘bend’ and (ON TRIPS)* but in fact it’s BOW plus (TRIPS)*

14  It’s most shameful, housing animal in box
An insertion of APE in CHEST.  CHEAP in the sense of ‘that’s a cheap trick’.

15  One church takes off – it makes progress in an entertainment centre
A charade of I, CE and (TAKES)*  A slightly eccentric definition, perhaps.

16  PM about to start reforming
If the afternoon (PM) is about to start then AM will be ENDING.

18  The old man locks up someone socially unacceptable
Smooth surface.  A charade of PA and a reversal (‘up’) of HAIR for ‘locks’.

19  Clandestine religious group about to be imprisoned
An insertion of RE for ‘about’ in SECT.

21  What’s a bit warm and soft in selection of food served up
A further insertion, of P for ‘piano’ or musically ‘soft’ in a reversal of DIET.

Usual good stuff from Quixote; thanks to him.

7 Responses to “Independent 8220/Quixote”

  1. flashling says:

    Was a little unsure of ITA in Anita and seriously delayed myself by trying to justify royale instead of regale for 1d, I agree it was up a notch or 2 from recent Quixotes.

    Thanks Pierre and Q.

    Wot no closing joke today Pierre? :-)

  2. Pelham Barton says:

    Thanks Quixote for an enjoyable puzzle and Pierre for the blog.

    3ac/12ac: These clues are undoubtedly sound, but it is not clear whether the second indication is defining the answer as a whole or making a charade from the two words separately. I would read 3ac as relating to two separate meanings of the whole answer and 12ac as a charade, with the second indication being cricketer (SLIP) that’s got (followed by) dismissed (OUT).

    13ac: Small typo in the blog: “IS” does not form part of the anagram fodder.

  3. NealH says:

    I found this mostly quite easy apart from 1 across, where I got somewhat convinced the answer would be race (on the grounds that there might be a mill race running through a farm).

  4. Rowland says:

    Hi Pierre. I think you have a point about DIFFICULT or DESPERATE TIMES. Not sure whether these ar really proper phrases for a crossword, either, a point which Don bangs on about in his book. I liked the puzzle however, which had some very elegant moments.

    Cheers and ta for blog,

  5. Pierre says:

    Thanks, Pelham, I’ll correct the blog.

  6. allan_c says:

    No reason why ‘Mitre’ couldn’t be capitalised in 22ac. This sort of thing has been discussed here before: capitalising when it’s not necessary is fair; not capitalising when it’s needed isn’t. Not entirely logical, maybe, but that seems to be the convention.

    Anyway a nice one from the Don. Difficult to pick out a favourite clue but I liked CHARON.

    Thanks, Pierre, for the blog.

  7. Bertandjoyce says:

    Late start again but finished fairly quickly, partly down to solving the long anagrams fairly easily. Usual good stuff from the Don.

    Thanks Pierre.

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