Fifteensquared

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Financial Times 14,233 by Mudd

Posted by Pete Maclean on February 21st, 2013

Pete Maclean.

Prize puzzle from the Weekend FT of February 9, 2013

I find only one outstanding clue in this puzzle — that is 22D (NINJA) which is a fine &lit. — but think it is a solidly good puzzle all in all.

Across
1. CHATTY – C[ricketer] + HATTY (like a bowler, might you say?)
4. ATOMIC – hidden word
8. DENTIST – [fa]N in anagram of ID TEST
9. STROPPY – TROP (too much) in SPY (look)
11. PROSTITUTE – P (soft) + ROSTI (Swiss food) + TUT (mummy) + E[aten]. This was easy for me as I happen to love rosti; had a memorable one in Austria a couple of years back. In the definition, ‘the other’ is slang for sexual intercourse.
12. HULL – double definition
13. DINGO – anagram of DOG IN
14. PARENTAL – PA (secretary [as in personal assistant]) + RENTAL (hiring)
16. CATALYST – anagram of C[learl]Y AT LAST
18. IRONY – double/cryptic definition
20. DAFT – DA (attorney) + FT (us)
21. BIRTHSTONE – anagram of THE BRITONS
23. NIGERIA – AIRE (runner — in the sense of a river) + GIN (drink) all backwards
24. STAMINA – ANIMAT[e]S (enlivens without energy) backwards
25. THOUGH – H (hard) in TOUGH (hard). There is a typo in this clue, at least in the Web edition. It has “desribes” which should, surely, be “describes”.
26. UGANDA – UG (primitive comment) + AND (joiner) + A (a)

Down
1. CLEAR – C (ton) + LEAR (king)
2. ARTISAN – SIT (pose) backwards in ARAN (sweater)
3. TESTIMONY – IM (I’m) + ON (working) together in TESTY (irritable)
5. TITHE – TIT (common bird) + HE (man)
6. MOORHEN – RHE[a] (tailless flightless bird) in MOON (show behind!). It took me a while to figure out this wordplay.
7. CAPILLARY – PILL (a dose of medicine) in CARY (Grant)
10. JUMP-START – JUMP (jerk) + START (jerk)
13. DRAMATIST – TAMAR (Cornish river) backwards + IS (is) together in D[orse]T
15. REICHSTAG – anagram of CHAIRS GET
17. ART DECO – DEC (month) in anagram of ROTA
19. OTTOMAN – OTT (extreme [i.e. Over The Top]) + OMAN (nation)
21. BLING – B (black) + LING (swimmer)
22. NINJA – hidden word and an &lit.

4 Responses to “Financial Times 14,233 by Mudd”

  1. John Newman says:

    Thanks Pete. I very bravely had a go at this while on holiday without access to a dictionary or the internet and feel I performed creditably but couldn’t get a few.

    Is TROP an English word?

  2. Pete Maclean says:

    John, You raise an interesting question. I don’t have all my usual dictionaries at hand but those that I can check (Collins Cobuild and The Shorter Oxford) do not list it. Checking online dictionaries I find that a few list it but as a French word. And I don’t mean as a French word that has been adopted into English but simply as a French word! So the answer may well be no.

  3. Gaufrid says:

    So far as I am aware, the only time that TROP is used in English is in the phrase ‘de trop’ meaning unwanted or excessive (literally, of too much).

  4. Pete Maclean says:

    Hi Gaufrid. And that phrase happened to come up in another Mudd recently (26ac in http://www.fifteensquared.net/2013/02/07/financial-times-14221-by-mudd/). Maybe that led Mudd to think that ‘trop’ by itself is more English than is appropriate.

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