Never knowingly undersolved.

Independent 8259 / Nestor

Posted by Bertandjoyce on April 4th, 2013


Bert looked at this puzzle and immediately solved two clues. He knew that Joyce would not be too pleased if he carried on looking and solved further answers as quickly!

As it happened, when we both sat down together we stared at the grid for ages before solving another clue. There was a minor theme based around BOND in both answers and clues but we can’t see that it amounts to anything more than that.

Thanks Nestor – a good bit of brain activity needed today – but then it is a Thursday!

1   Food primarily with Greek character?
FETA A play on F (first letter of Food or ‘primarily’) + ETA (Greek character) leading to the famous Greek cheese
4   Idly hum prose dreams of God? Quite the reverse
MORPHEUS An anagram of HUM PROSE (anagrind is ‘idly’)
11   Temptation to tuck into muscle, a certain beef cut
AITCHBONE ITCH (temptation) inside or ‘tucking into’ AB (muscle) + ONE (a)
12   American infantryman’s returned letter
SIGMA Reversal or ‘return’ of AM (American) + GI’S (infantryman’s)
13   With distraught mum aboard, glider possibly went into a dive
SLUMMED Anagram of MUM inside or ‘aboard’ SLED (glider possibly)
14   Figure which formula remuneration packages overturned
NUMERAL Hidden or ‘packaged’ within the clue and reversed or ‘overturned’ formuLA REMUNeration
15   Bond protagonist’s musical talent behind piano augmenting note well
PADDINGTON BEAR EAR (musical talent) after ADDING TO (augmenting) behind P (piano) + NB (note well). Joyce would like to take this opportunity to apologise to her son (who also completes the Indy puzzle and sometimes reads the blog) for throwing away his Paddington Bear cushion when he went to university without telling him!
18   Doctor Zhivago cackles making good old country now divided
CZECHOSLOVAKIA Anagram of ZHIVAgO CACKLES but changing G to O (making ‘good’ become ‘old’) anagrind is ‘doctor’
21   After part exchange, fail to suffer
UNDERGO GO UNDER (fail) with parts swapped around or ‘exchanged’
23   Casually leave waterfowl no longer served by kitchen
SWAN OFF SWAN (waterfowl) + OFF (no longer served by kitchen)
25   Duck starter from Elizabeth David gets sent back
EVADE E (first letter or ‘starter’ from Elizabeth) + DAVE (David) reversed or ‘sent back’
26   Deity more ‘allowed when inserting new boat propeller
GONDOLIER GOD (deity) + hOLIER (hallowed with first letter removed as indicated by the ‘) around N (new)
27   Given too much information presented fraudulently, including name
SPOON-FED SPOOFED (presented fraudulently) around N (name)
28   Express discomfort with work over engaging European
YELP PLY (work) reversed or ‘over’ outside or ‘engaging’ E (European)
2   Support team to cheer on, having time for clubs
ENTOURAGE ENcOURAGE (to cheer on) with C (clubs) excaanged for T (time)
3   Sheepish when educated about meat not expected in burgers
ASHAMED AS (when) + ED (educated) around or ‘about’ HAM (meat you wouldn’t expect in burgers!). A topical clue based around the recent horse-meat scandal. Joyce would just like to add that Bert had horse tenderloin recently and it was very tasty!
5   Possible description of aim as something rarely excellent
ONE IN A THOUSAND A cryptic clue (possible description) for AIM could be I (one) in A M (a thousand)
6   Pat’s one (male) – after sorting office’s closure is averted
POSTMAN Cryptic definition – anagram of PAT’S ONe without E (last letter or ‘closure’ of office) + M (male) anagrind is ‘sorting’. This took us a while to sort out. Postman Pat was one of our son’s (and our) favourite TV characters for a while. You can follow this link if you are of a certain age and want a bit of nostalgia.
7   Score-person’s written up even slices for great golfer
ELGAR Alternate letters (even slices) and reversed or up’ within gReAt GoLfEr
8   Sergeant-major and confederate seizing father and unimportant people
SMALL FRY SM (sergeant-major) + ALLY (confederate) around or seizing FR (father)
9   Bond henchman James grapples with in another film
JAWS JAS (James) around or ‘grappling’ W (with). It took us a while to sort this one out and was our last clue as there are two definitions here.
10   Candid about half of guests, keeping elderly shut up
HOLD ONES TONGUE HONEST (candid) + ON (about) + GUEsts (half of guests) around or ‘keeping’ OLD (elderly)
16   English mug welcoming one high point for leader
EDITORIAL E (English) + DIAL (mug as in face) around or ‘welcoming’ I (one) + TOR (high point)
17   These layers of blame could make us scarce
ACCUSERS Anagram of US SCARCE (anagrind is ‘could make’)
19   Actor giving voice to 15 from army and navy
HORDERN HORDE (army) + RN (navy). You can hear Michael Hordern read Paddington Bear (15ac) if you follow this link.
20   Passionate part of right-winger’s profession?
AMATORY A right winger may say or ‘profess’ AM A TORY. Presumably the ‘part’ is included as the person would probably say “I am a Tory”
22   Something that impedes ring opponent for Rocky
DRAGO DRAG (something that impedes) + O (ring). The answer refers to this opponent of Rocky Balboa in Rocky IV. We had to check this one on the internet and was one of our last answers.
24   Vengeful deity bearing down heartlessly
FURY  FUrRY (having or ‘bearing’ down as in fur) with middle letter removed or ‘heartlessly’


8 Responses to “Independent 8259 / Nestor”

  1. michelle says:

    I enjoyed this puzzle by Nestor even though failed to finish it. I didn’t solve 22d (which I never would have been able to solve!) and I also failed on 9d, which in retrospect, I should have been able to solve.


    I solved but could not fully parse 5d, 10, 15, 11, 21.

    New word for me is AITCHBONE.

    Interestingly, we had GONDOLA in the Guardian cryptic today, and GONDOLIER here.

    Thanks for the blog, Bertandjoyce. I especially enjoyed your parsing of 6d.

  2. Kathryn's Dad says:

    Thanks, B&J. Just before I comment on the puzzle I will reveal that I have contacted the relevant authorities to report the unspeakable act of child cruelty to which you have fessed up in 15ac. Shameful behaviour …

    I was quite chuffed to finish this without too much trauma. Either the Thursday Indy crosswords are getting less fiendish or I’m getting a bit better. Mebbes a bit of both.

    I thought CZECHOSLOVAKIA, GONDOLIER and ONE IN A THOUSAND were all excellent clues, but there was good stuff elsewhere as well. Bravo, Nestor.

    Excellent blog, too – needed you today to explain FURY. Just perhaps for overseas solvers, I’ll mention that the ‘Bond’ in the PADDINGTON BEAR clue is referring to Michael Bond, the creator of Paddington. As an immigrant from Peru, these days he would probably be detained by the UK Border Agency before even getting as far as the London station.

    Random fact: Ivor Wood, the animator, directed both POSTMAN PAT and PADDINGTON BEAR. I think I’ll just pop outside and get a life now.

  3. flashling says:

    @K’sD if this was getting easier, heaven help me when we have a tricky one. :-(

    Didn’t help myself by confidently writing in BITE ONES TONGUE without checking all the wordplay which rather messed up my NW corner.

    Thanks B&J for showing me the error of my ways and Nestor for bamboozling me.

  4. crypticsue says:

    I did enjoy this one especially when I realised which Bond was required. I was alright with this one, would have been stuck on the secret agent!

    Thanks to B&J for an entertaining blog of a very enjoyable puzzle (thank you Nestor too).

    I thought everyone was guilty of throwing away things their sons treasured when they left home – perhaps that’s just me and Joyce!

  5. allan_c says:

    Nice one, Nestor. I’m with K’sD in thinking this was fairly easy – though not without it’s tricky moments. I thought at first that 18ac was going to be one of those unpronounceable ex-soviet countries that end in ‘–istan’ till I looked more closely at the anagram fodder and saw there was no ‘t’. And for 15ac I was about to start googling for the names of characters in the 007 canon when I suddenly twigged it was the Peruvian immigrant. Didn’t know DRAGO but got it from the wordplay.

    Thanks to setter and bloggers.

  6. allan_c says:

    Oh dear! I hope Lynne Truss doesn’t read this – “it’s” should be “its” of course.

  7. NealH says:

    Oddly, postman was one of the first I got but the only one I couldn’t parse. The problem was that I could see both male=m or man and post=after in the solution, so got hopelessly distracted by that. Nice, challenging puzzle.

  8. Bertandjoyce says:

    Hi NealH – we had exactly the same problem with postman. It was only at the last moment when we were about to schedule the blog that Bert suddenly realised the parsing. Lots of clever misdirection we thought from Nestor or was that just because we had difficulty with the clue?

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