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June 9th, 2019

Mephisto 3066 by Paul McKenna

Unless you’re very experienced you are unlikely to solve a Mephisto without using Chambers. The idea is that you use the precise wordplay to derive an answer that you then verify in the dictionary. 4D is a perfect example.

I found this a relatively easy puzzle

In the clues, definitions are underlined. Wordplay explanation is followed by very helpful comments.

ACROSS

1 Flipping partner who watches a wide-eyed spectator (6)
GAWPER: WAG reversed – PER; partner who watches=WAG; a=PER;
6 Artistically florid like Rankin, eg (5)
ASIAN: AS-IAN; reference author Ian Rankin of Rebus fame;
10 Can Trump ultimately hold back? (8)
PRESERVE: (trum)P-RESERVE;
11 Loch vessel’s making slow movements (6)
LARGOS: L-ARGOS;
12 Whence Aeneas fled is hip (at least in part) (5)
ILIUM: two meanings; ILIUM=Troy;
13 In the course of returning Crusader captured this port (4)
ACRE: hidden reversed (derutp)AC-RE(dasurc); and literally true;
15 Grand praise by Aero Club central for a feature of writing (11, two words)
GRAVE, ACCENT: G-RAVE-AC-CENT;
16 Terrific stink! A drummer returned weed (11, two words)
WILD,MUSTARD: WILD-MUST-A-DR reversed;
18 Such as rapidly discharges / a dart of pain to Rob Roy, say (4)
STEN: two meanings 1=automatic gun 2=pain in Perth;
21 Goods vehicle belonging to a Trotter turned over (4)
SLED: DEL’S reversed; reference Del-boy Trotter in Only Fools and Horses;
22 Wandering around Sinai like a creature wiped out (11)
DINOSAURIAN: (around Sinai)*;
24 Neat way to eat oranges is, say, in the mind (11)
SEGMENTALLY: ‘S-EG-MENTALLY;
27 Ballerina’s posture worked at steadily, endlessly (4)
PLIE: PLIE(d);
28 Rounded headland in the morning? Tow unused (5)
MORRO: (to)MORRO(w);
29 Joker, say, adding line to advantage (6)
CLAUSE: C(L)AUSE; a Joker Clause is a wrecking amendment;
30 Myth of German giant? It’s a treat for dons (8, two words)
AUDIT,ALE: AUDI-TALE; special booze for the bosses;
31 Die previously made from small strip (5)
SWELT: S-WELT;
32 Charge is about old penny for what intrepid canoeist enjoys (6)
RAPIDS: RAP-I(D)S;

DOWN

1 Russian can lift up silver (5)
GULAG: LUG reversed – AG;
2 Italics are out of place in states of fervour or ardour (10)
ALACRITIES: (italics are)*;
3 Monitor without right leads to reach around laptop (6)
WORRAL: WO-R-R(each)-A(round)-L(aptop); monitor lizard;
4 Love gripping old set rhetorical questions (8)
EROTEMES: ERO(TEME)S; old set=TEME;
5 Where Poirot scoffed, arrant curates struggled (13, two words)
RESTAURANT,CAR: (arrant curates)*;
6 Unaltered American security service (4, two words)
AS,IS: A-SIS;
7 Blocks chosen to replace anxiety in scares (7)
SELECTS: S(care)S becomes S(ELECT)S;
8 Irish dream of bit of lamp (7)
IRIDEAL: IR-IDEAL; lamp=eye;
9 Spenser’s called chaps up (past tense) (5)
NEMPT: MEN reversed – PT;
14 Hooky dealer in US not yet met (10)
UNREALISED: (dealer in us)*;
17 Plates grate in area of bone (8)
SCUTELLA: S(CUT)ELLA;
19 English are embracing bit of disaster — get ready! (7, two words)
EN,GARDE: ENG-AR(D)E; D from D(isaster);
20 French name mostly splendid point (7)
NOMBRIL: NOM-BRIL(l);
23 I snatch up what’s within fig tree (6)
ILLUPI: I-PULL reversed – (f)I(g);
24 Plants mostly provided by parents (5)
SOMAS: SO-MAS;
25 Proceeds from Spenser’s year of necessity wanting number (5)
YEEDS: Y-(n)EEDS;
26 AI program that’s repeatedly seen in Twitter — it’s a parasite (4)
BOTT: BOT-T;