Log in

Previous Entry | Next Entry

Mephisto 2537 Tim Moorey

An excellent puzzle of reasonable difficulty with some very good clues. I thought both KWAKIUTL and PSITTACINE top class whilst HELLIERS is outstanding. The clever use of "fulham" appealed to me and demonstrates the need to check for obscure meanings of words you think you know when a clue is proving to be difficult. I have one small query over an apparently unclued "n" at 10A.

For new solvers (C) = Chambers used to verify part of a clue (S) = starter clue (see memories/solving tips at the top of the page). There are only eight in this puzzle and their distribution makes the top rather tougher than the bottom.

1KWAKIUTL - K-(Kuwait)*-L; KL=Kuala Lumpur, cosmopolitan capital of Malaysia; the language of the Native Indians who live on and in the area adjacent to Vancouver Island; excellent clue; (C);
6SEPT - SE(P)T; P=piano=quiet (music); SET=group; a division of a Cork clan; (S);
10INDENTOR - (editor + n + n)*; the second "n" doesn't appear to be clued; to indent is to place an order;
11ARTOCARPUS - (corrupt as a)*; criminal is the anagrind; plant genus that includes the jack-fruit tree; nice clue; (C);
12ABRICOCK - A-BR-I(nformal)-COCK; COCK=mate=slang for friend; old word for apricot; (C);
14SPAER - ("reaps" reversed); Thomas The Rhymer;
16AEGROTAT - A-EG-ROTA-T(angle); say=EG; undergraduate's sick note; nice clue; (C);
17CHAD - CHA(p)-D; p=parking; D=day; Central African landlocked republic presumably not connected to the second world war graffito of the same name who highlighted shortages and a visiting Kilroy;
18GRAZ - G(R)AZ; GAZ=gazetteer; R=river; Austria's answer to Birmingham and capital of the federal state of Styria; (S);
19HELLIERS - HELL(I)ERS; I="in" short; HELLERS=obstreperous people (see Hell in C); dialect for people who work on roofs, hence "thatcher and colleagues" (see hell-1 in C); oblique reference to Margaret Thatcher and her court; brilliant clue;
24SCROW - S-CROW; S=shilling=bob (old slang appearing two weeks running); reference Jim CROW (laws) that existed in the USA from 1876-1965 to enforce racial segregation in public places; a scroll (C);
25ROSIE,LEE - RE(I lose)*E; ree=reeve-3=a female ruff (sandpiper); a Clerkenwell cuppa;
26PSITTACINE - (patient + c=cold + is)*; sick=anagrind; of or like parrots; another excellent clue; (C);
27MAILLOTS - M-AIL-LOTS; M=monsieur; Robert Helpmann's strides; (S);
28YLKE - E(K)LY reversed; See=diocese=Ely; K=knight; old word for ilk=type, kind; (S);
29SNOOPERS - (press)* around NOO(n); people employed by local authorities under The Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act to inspect the content of your dustbin; (S);
1KHALSA - K(lash)*A; KA=K(ampuche)A - now called Cambodia for younger solvers; an order of Sikhs;
2ASTRAGALS - (star galas)*; fulham=a loaded dice - classic use of a word with a little known second meaning to mislead;an obsolete word for dice; (C);
3KNOWER - sounds like Noah of Ark fame; (S);
4UNABATED - UNA-BATED; UNA = overworked crossword girl; bate-3=old word for impatient; (C);
5LEPID - L-(t)EPID; L=loch; pleasant is the definition; (C);
6SNUCK - S(N)UCK; N=number; behaved meanly - see "sneak" in C;
7PONCE,AROUND - PONCE-A-ROUND; queen=ponce=effeminate man; A=active; circle=ROUND; camping, perhaps?;
8TROKED - TR-OKE-D; TR=transactions; D=Deutschland=Germany; OKE-2=OK=right; TROKE=truck-2=slang for idled; (C);
9TRIPERSONAL - TRI(PERSON)AL; TRIAL=nuisance; disciple=PERSON (a bit vague?); Mr and Mrs Lloyd George and Frances Stevenson, perhaps;
13OTHERWISE - (theories + w=worked initially)*; (S);
15PALMETTO - (a plot)* surrounds MET; the Sabal palm; nice clue;
18GORAMY - G(OR)AMY; strong tasting=GAMY; OR=before; GORAMY=gourami=a food-fish; (C);
20ICECAP - (pic)* surrounds ACE reversed; the source of much anxiety. Those interested in divorcing fact from fiction might appreciate this ICECAP facts about global warming ; (S);
21SWEEPS - SWEEPS(take); SWEEP=slang for Charles Ponzi and his ylke; (C);
22LISLE - L(ength)-ISLE; inch-2=island; cotton yarn (C);
23SEILS - S-LIES all reversed; SEIL-1=sile=to strain; (C);


( 11 comments — Leave a comment )
Apr. 19th, 2009 07:34 am (UTC)
I notice that in the clue for 10ac, there is a double-space between "person ordering." I wonder if a word(s) went missing?
Apr. 19th, 2009 07:36 am (UTC)
Incidentally, after all-but-a-toucher completing the previous Mephisto, I got absolutely nowhere with this one, but it's been a busy week and I haven't found time to sit down with a Chambers and really chew into it.
Apr. 19th, 2009 07:41 am (UTC)
10ac - Editor involved with new person ordering stuff (8), to save folks looking it up - sent me scurrying to Chambers looking for some abbreviation "nn" meaning new.. but of course it isn't there, so I suspect you are right Jimbo and it is just an error. Pleasant crossword, otherwise..
Apr. 19th, 2009 07:56 am (UTC)
Looking at the surface reading, I reckon it was meant to say "news person", with news indicating 2 x new = "nn".
Apr. 19th, 2009 08:18 am (UTC)
Yes, I buy that - good thinking - would have been a good clue!!
Apr. 19th, 2009 10:58 am (UTC)
Yes some nice stuff in this. I tend to get a hour or so at the puzzle on Sunday and then short looks before going to sleep during the week, so the day on which I actually finish is an indication of difficulty. This was a Monday puzzle, which means fairly easy - relatively speaking. (Today's was a one session Sunday puzzle.) This had only a few obscure words and they were generously clued.

13dn made another recent appearance in very similar form in the Times cryptic!

At 11ac before I had any checking letters, I initially thought of the various "jacks", in particular the car jack, and made the anagram CAR-PART-OUS which I thought was a nice adjective describing jacks and other bits of cars!

Apr. 19th, 2009 11:06 am (UTC)
Sorry, that was me!

And I see we got Kuala Lumpur again today - in full this time.
Apr. 19th, 2009 12:34 pm (UTC)
I have in the past - in all seriousness - suggested to US solvers of the Times that they watch the "Blackadder" series. It explains (among other things) rotten boroughs and "the Scottish Play" - all good cryptic fare.

When I was thinking about 4dn and considering UNABATED I thought of Baldrick's description of Dr Johnson as "the batey old fellow in the black coat". Help comes from unexpected sources sometimes.
Apr. 19th, 2009 04:27 pm (UTC)
I just laughed at kurihan's comment and agree that more blackadder needs to be seen by more people. I liked this one a lot, and was lucky to have encountered a few of the words recently to get myself started (MAILLOT and SPAER were in the Listener recently). I couldn't get the first half of PONCE AROUND for a long time. Some tricky words and amusing clues
Apr. 20th, 2009 12:23 pm (UTC)
Found this one hard, no time recorded. "Kuwait" as anagram fodder didn't occur to me and had to get this from checking letters, and also struggled to make queen into ponce. Did at least equally badly with Paul McKenna's 2538 yesterday, partly by poor solving of a long answer that I'm sure Jimbo would count as a "starter".
Apr. 20th, 2009 03:17 pm (UTC)
It's a strange thing, word association. I always struggle to remember queen=cat but after the obvious ER, HM, VR and so on the camp connection always comes to mind. It must be my misspent youth.
( 11 comments — Leave a comment )