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Times 25147 - but did 19 16 the wheel?

Solving time : 17:53 on a printout - but I was still feeling a little uneasy about two of the answers, so I went to the Crossword Club and typed them in carefully - it came back at a correct puzzle, so woohoo! I have mixed feelings about this one - it's a tricky crossword, but there's four names, a country a nationality, an island... that's a lot of capitalization!

However in the end everything makes sense except 26 down, but it's going to be a tough time looking for one to leave out, there's lots of cryptic tricks going on.

Away we go!

1LAPLANDER: one that lands in the lap has fallen easily
6WIDOW: WINDOW(opportunity) without the N and a crafty definition
9COTERIE: (EROTIC)* then E from the heart of dukEdom. Another well-hidden definition
10DISGUST: that's G(grand) U(posh) ST(thoroughfar) after the DIS
11SEE: hooly dooly - that's a quadruple definition
14EMBODY: MB then OD in E(drug),Y
17HOME BREW: MO reversed in HEBREW
19EDISON: NO SIDE (the end of a rugby match) reversed
23OOH: alternating letters in dOrOtHy
25TIMBALE: LAB(party) reversed in TIME - got this from the wordplay
27FEAR,GAL: Only got this one by thinking of the one-hit wonder from the mid-80s
28let's leave this one out from the acrosses
29TO A DEGREE: TOAD,EG(say),RE(on),E(tip of tonguE)
1LOCUS(t): I liked "Leggy stripper" for LOCUST
2POT HERB: POTHER(fuss), then B(second-rate)
3ABRACADABRA: I think this is C,ADA in A,BRA,BRA but I don't see where the second BRA comes from. Is she wearing two?
4DIESEL: DIES(drops) then (f)EL(l)
5RED BARON: RED(wine) then O in BARN(store)
6let's omit this from the downs
8WITHDRAWN: DR in WITH AWN(having beard)
16REINVENT: REIN(lead), VENT(pipe) and another nice definition
18MYANMAR: M(maiden) then (MAN,RAY)* - the country formally known as Burma
20SLOGGER: double definition
21STAFFA: reversed first letters of Away From Fire As The Smoke
24HALVE: H then AL(i)VE
26ASS: from definition, but I'm not sure what it's half of - ASSAIL maybe? Edit: ASSIST for "pitch in" - see comments


Apr. 26th, 2012 10:43 am (UTC)
The setter replies ...
In response to Jimbo, to whom thanks for kind comments, and thanks also to George the blogger (I am taking "hooly dooly" to be a compliment!)
But as always all comments, favourable and otherwise, are useful and appreciated.
ABRACADABRA is indeed (C ADA in BRA BRA) all under A. In the world of the crossword clue I think it's perfectly acceptable for someone to be "dressed" in two bras, cryptically if not literally. The "bra" is only appreciated by this setter as an item of underwear if the hackneyed "supporter" can be avoided, although that doesn't always apply. If "supporter" fits a nice surface then so be it..
In CAESAR'S SALAD the definition is indeed "course supplement" but I agree "course" would have done equally well if not better.
REINVENT: "Rein" and "lead" are a loose equivalence I admit, but I think one can just about get away with it figuratively. (BTW my experience of reins and leads for children, dogs and horses is that there may be a fair degree of "pulling" and "being pulled" in any combination)
I also agree that the definition for this clue could have been phrased better.
I'm pleased George remembers Feargal Sharkey - a one-hit wonder as a solo artist but not of course but not with his Undertones colleagues.
Apr. 26th, 2012 11:30 am (UTC)
Re: The setter replies ...
Many thanks setter - much appreciated
Apr. 26th, 2012 04:02 pm (UTC)
Re: The setter replies ...
A difficult and ingenious puzzle, which seems to have challenged us all. Many thanks to setter for the puzzle and the gloss on it. He/she- are there any female setters? - will forgive me, I hope, if I say that I remain unconvinced by the explanation for the double BRA at 3 dn. I think some indicator of the doubling should have been offered in the clue - say, "Caught girl in her underwear, plus spare, under a bit of a spell?". I also remain doubtful about REINVENT= "coin not necessarily" - in my book there are no circumstances in which coining is the same as reinventing. I think CAESAR'S SALAD just about gets away with it - it is usually, in my experience, eaten as a course in itself, but I've also seen it offered as a side-dish. Quibbles aside, an excellent puzzle. The quadruple def at 11 ac was indeed a "hooly dooly" (whatever that is) of a clue.
Apr. 27th, 2012 01:15 am (UTC)
Re: The setter replies ...
'in my book there are no circumstances in which coining is the same as reinventing' - but that's exactly the point on which the clue is agreeing with you! Perhaps the mental insertion of a comma after 'coin not' would help to make it clearer that these two words are the key definitional part of the literal.
Apr. 27th, 2012 02:21 pm (UTC)
Re: The setter replies ...
Fair enough, but then what is the purpose of "necessarily"? I note that the setter concedes that "the definition for this clue could have been phrased better".
Apr. 27th, 2012 03:23 pm (UTC)
Re: The setter replies ...
I confess to being surprised at the setter's diffidence, both here and with the salad. As I wrote above, the function of 'necessarily' is, in my view - and presumably in the setter's - to denote a logically binding situation, as it would be in a sentence such as 'To be single is necessarily not to be married'. Okay, the word order in the clue is a bit Yoda-like, but that's all grist to the crossword mill, I'd have thought. A really good definition, as George originally said, even if the lead and the pipe are borderline. But again, for me, borderline's good enough.

Edited at 2012-04-27 03:25 pm (UTC)
Apr. 27th, 2012 04:38 pm (UTC)
Re: The setter replies ...
I'm with you on the salad, and I understand the use of "necessarily" in the example sentence you give, it's just that I don't see how "necessarily" can be made to perform that function in the clue as phrased. It seems to me that the clue would have been better if it had simply read: "Coin not found in lead pipe". But I suspect that this is one on which we shall have to agree to differ.