Thursday, January 27, 2011

Crossword 11 Answers Explanation

Explanation for Crossword 11


1 Metal of two colours (5,4) WHITE GOLD: Double definition of METAL and TWO COLOURS

8 A barrier to a dodgy dealer (5) FENCE: Double definition of BARRIER and DODGY DEALER

10 Croat turned performer (5) ACTOR: Definition PERFORMER; ‘turned’ indicating anagram of ‘Croat’

12 Bored with a mineral (3) ORE: Definition MINERAL; ‘with’ indicating some letters of ‘bored’

13 Originally called in one electrician (3) NEE: Definition ORIGINALLY CALLED; ‘in’ indicating some letters of ‘one electrician’

14 Creepy-sounding lake (4) ERIE: Definition LAKE; ‘sounding’ indicating sounds like ‘creepy’ (eerie)

15 Wanting Mark to go to church (6) SCARCE: Definition WANTING; SCAR (Mark) + CE (short for Church of England) = SCARCE

16 What’s left after burning trophy (5) ASHES: Double definition of ‘what’s left after burning’ and ‘trophy’

18 Dismissal points to tiny shoe (6) BOOTEE: Definition TINY SHOE; BOOT (dismissal) + EE (points: EE= East East) = BOOTEE

20 Witches’ irritation (4)  ITCH: Definition IRRITATION; ‘Apostrophe’ in ‘witches’’ indicating some letters in ‘witches’

22 Encountered the police in London (3) MET: Double definition of ENCOUNTERED and POLICE IN LONDON

23 Quantity of schooners (3) ONE: Definition QUANTITY; ‘of’ indicating some letters of ‘schooners’

24 Firm about socialist beliefs (5) CREDO: Definition BELIEFS; CO (firm) about RED (socialist) = C(RED)O

25 Terribly eager to comply (5) AGREE: Definition COMPLY; ‘terrible’ indicating anagram of ‘eager’ = AGREE

26 Information about cheat-fest (9) FACTSHEET: Definition INFORMATION; ‘about’ indicating anagram of ‘cheat-fest’


2 Capital to laugh at negative one (5) HANOI: Definition CAPITAL; HA (laugh) at NO (negative) I (one) = HA + NO + I = HANOI

3 It grows in the street (4) TREE: Definition IT GROWS; ‘in’ indicating some letters of ‘the street’

4 Look for German weapon (6) GLANCE: Definition LOOK; G (short for German) + LANCE (weapon) = G LANCE

5 Next, alter arrangement (5) LATER: Definition NEXT; ‘arrangement’ indicating anagram of ‘alter’

6 Composer who frequently returned, say (9) OFFENBACH: Definition COMPOSER;  ‘say’ indicating sounds like ‘frequently returned’ (Often Back)

7 Release cog to reach coast (9) FREEWHEEL: Definition COAST;  FREE (release) + WHEEL (cog) = FREEWHEEL

9 Made Edward follow wrong race (7) CREATED: Definition MADE; ‘wrong’ indicating anagram of ‘race’ (CREA) + TED (short for Edward)

11 Finishing shell with energy (7) CEASING: Definition FINISHING;  CASING (shell) with E (energy) = C(E)ASING

15 The woman from Esher (3) SHE: Definition WOMAN; ‘from’ indicating some letters of ‘Esher’

17 Explain drug found in beer (3,3) SET OUT: Definition EXPLAIN; E (short for Ecstacy (drug)) in STOUT (beer) = S(E)TOUT

19 Last character round to play game (5) OMEGA: Definition LAST CHARACTER (in Greek); O (round) + MEGA (play is an anagram indicator for ‘game’)

21 Reticent about trees (5) TERSE: Definition RETICENT; ‘about’ indicating anagram of ‘trees’

23 Curse out of loathing (4) OATH: Definition CURSE; ‘out of’ indicating some letters of ‘loathing’

Chian Min

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Punctuations Explanation

Each Clue explanation is divided into Analysis, Aesthetics and Afterword.

Visual Key to Clue Analysis :
Definition : BOLD
Wordplay : Italics with keywords underlined as well
Link : Normal


G3 : 'Scoo-bi-doo' etc seen as square by jazz fan (4)   _ _ _ T

'Scoo-bi-doo' etc seen as square by jazz fan

square = s
jazz fan = cat
by indicates that s is beside cat
'Scoo-bi-doo' etc = scat

The quote marks about scoo-bi-doo indicates that its meant as a particular kind of phrase.
Etc confirms that there are similar kind of phrases.
These kind of nonsensical phrases are typical in scat singing.
You dont hear much of that now. The wordplay exactly seems to suggest that it's no longer cool!
Just beautiful.

Here's a clip of scat singing by the great Ella Fitzgerald.

H3 : Verb in 'was concerned' is cut up. (6)  _ _ _ _ E _

Verb in 'was concerned' is cut up.

was concerned = cared
verb = v
v in cared = carved = cut up

The quote marks again tell us that we need a synonym for 'was concerned'

Its a bit of a lazy way to link the word verb and the actual verb in 'was concerned'.

I3 : I'm spectacular after dark, 'Most Excellent' in bed. (5)  _ _ M _ _

I'm spectacular after dark, 'Most Excellent' in bed.

Most Excellent = ME
bed = cot
ME in cot = comet which is spectacular after dark.

Nice reading. It first throws you off - of someone boasting of his prowess.

Halley's comet , when it came around in 1986,   was not that spectacular even at night.


Friday, January 14, 2011

Punctuations 3

Each Clue explanation is divided into Analysis, Aesthetics and Afterword.

Visual Key to Clue Analysis :
Definition : BOLD
Wordplay : Italics with keywords underlined as well
Link : Normal


D3: What can be wild, including "H____!"?  (5)  _ A _ _ _

What can be wild, including "H____!"?

&lit clue ; the whole clue is the definition as well as wordplay.

Something wild is OATS
including H , we have OATHS
and some oaths are wild as shown by H___  , presumably "hell" or something worse.

Superb &lit clue! The use of the dash to indicate a censure of the letters that follow is a clue  to the nature of the answer.

The censured word is within quotes and this reinforces the setter's intention to be as fair as possible to the solver.Swear words are mostly shown in quotes and usually never in full.

E3: What you may hear from a Socialist; ______? (7)  _ _ A _ _ _ _

What you may hear from a Socialist; ______?

hear indicates not a homonym indicator in this case. So what you hear from a Socialist ( who is a political figure ) is ORATORY.

The dash here indicates where the answer can fit. Also, ORATORY can be broken up as OR A TORY.
Now a Tory is a Conservative and therefore on the opposite side of a Socialist. Both spout oratory now and then.
So then, when the answer is filled in, the clue is still valid when read in its entirety!

The clue above is a rare item. It belongs to that category of clues which I call UNSURPASSABLE.

Though I have a very technical definition for such a clue, let me state simply that for every word there is, there exists a matching clue which is perfect. In other words, that word has found its cryptic soulmate.

 F3: Humped creatures? Not so (Just so .......!) (5)  _ _ _ _ S

Humped creatures? Not so (Just so .......!)

just so is the anagram indicator ; Not so becomes oonts ; def : humped creatures

A mind-blowing clue which has the effect of an orgasm in the synaptic pathways of the brain.

The trail of dots in the parentheses indicates that the phrase tails off. There is a word there but its not needed for the clue.But if you know the word, then you can find the reference which will lead you to the answer!

In fact, the phrase within the parentheses has another reference - which explains its function as an anagram indicator!
The reference, scientifically is a just-so story.
The reference in literature is Just so stories by Kipling.

'Just so' in the scientific context tells you to 'tune' "not so" to fit the definition of humped creatures.

However, if you don't know the literary reference, you may still not know that oonts is the answer as its a slangword for the Indian camel.

"Just so stories" is a collection of children's stories. One of them is called "How the camel got its hump". However, on reading it, you will still not get the word "oonts"!

Oh dear! Only when you look through the index of Kipling's poems, will you see "oonts".

Torquemada would have been proud of this loaded clue by his 'grandson' Azed.


Another UNSURPASSABLE clue by Azed! In fact , all the three clues above are his.We mentioned him in our pages some time back.

Here are three more clues that make use of punctuations to enhance their reading.

G3 : 'Scoo-bi-doo' etc seen as square by jazz fan (4)   _ _ _ T

H3 : Verb in 'was concerned' is cut up. (6)  _ _ _ _ E _

I3 : I'm spectacular after dark, 'Most Excellent' in bed. (5)  _ _ M _ _


Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Crossword 10 Answers Explanation



1.Entrusted with oxidation (4) RUST
hidden clue : ent rust ed  ; 'with' serving as indicator. definition : oxidation

4. Bearing a set away (4) EAST
anagram indicator 'away' ; so a set becomes east ; definition : bearing

6. Just a lake (4) MERE
double definition(dd)

8. A number from Marianne (4) ARIA
hidden clue : M aria nne ; 'from' serving as indicator. definition : a number (song)

11. Troubles Lisa terribly (4) AILS
anagram indicator 'terribly' ; so Lisa becomes ails ; definition : troubles

13. Stickler for detail has new ornament (7) PENDANT
stickler for detail = pedant ; new = n ; 'has' is container indicator ; pe n dant ; def : ornament

14. Join a religious man (3) ADD
dd. a religious man = a DD ( Doctor of Divinity )

16. A pie’s changed colour (5) SEPIA
anagram indicator 'changed' ; so a pie's becomes sepia def : colour

18. Furniture list (5) TABLE

21. Woman’s sudden excursion (5) SALLY

22. Deal with a nice surprise (5) TREAT
dd  deal with = treat = a nice surprise

24. Lose argument about the Baltic, say (3) SEA
hidden indicator 'about'  lo sea rgument ; def ; Baltic,say

25. Very hot without right current (7) TOPICAL
Exclusion indicator is without ; very hot = tropical ; without right (r)
tropical - r = topical = def of current

28. Cultivated in meagre wood (4) GREW
hidden indicator is 'in' ; mea grew ood ; def : cultivated

30. The affair of the bag (4) CASE

31. A novel once more (4) ANEW

32. Won’t change address (4) TOWN
anagram indicator is 'change' ; so wont becomes town ; def : address

33. Pals out on strike (4) SLAP
anagram indicator is 'out' ; so pals become slap ; def : strike


1.Gather the pear was cooked (4) REAP
anagram indicator is 'cooked' ; so pear becomes reap ; def : gather

2. Drive the pins round (4) SPIN
anagram indicator is 'round' ; so pins become spin ; def : drive

3. Intends to find method (5) MEANS

4. Swimmer feeling about (3) EEL
hidden indicator is 'about' f eel ing ; def ; swimmer

5. Incline towards nurse (4) TEND

7. Tries to adapt ceremonies (5) RITES
anagram indicator is 'adapt' ; tries becomes rites ; def ; ceremonies

9. About to beat new discount (6) REBATE
anagram indicator is 'new' ; about = RE ; beat becomes BATE ; REBATE = discount

10. Confuse by removing top of oar (5) ADDLE
Exclusion indicator is 'removing' ; oar = paddle ; removing its top we have addle ; def : confuse

12. Part of yacht in auction, say (4) SAIL
homonym indicator is 'say' ; auction is sale ; sounds like sail which is part of yacht

15. Sad about taking everyone to the city (6) DALLAS
reversal indicator is 'about' ; so sad becomes das ; 'taking' is container indicator ;
everyone = all ; das taking all = D ALL AS which is a city

17. Deity in charge of terror (5) PANIC
deity = Pan ; in charge = ic ; panic  = terror

19. Grab unusual crow (4) BRAG
anagram indicator is 'unusual' ; so grab becomes brag ; def : crow

20.Consumed by school, say (5) EATEN
homonym indicator is 'say' ; school is eton ; sounds like eaten ; def : consumed

23. Pull the Spanish cloth (5) TOWEL
pull = tow ; 'the' in Spanish is el ; towel = cloth

24. Notice the location (4) SPOT

26. Recalled about visit (4) CALL
hidden indicator is 'about'  ; re call ed ; def : visit

27. Pale sort of spring (4) LEAP
anagram indicator is 'sort' ; so pale becomes leap ; def : spring

29. Rushed in a trance (3) RAN
hidden indicator is 'in' ; t ran ce ; def : rushed


Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Punctuations 2

Each Clue explanation is divided into Analysis, Aesthetics and Afterword.

Visual Key to Clue Analysis :
Definition : BOLD
Wordplay : Italics with keywords underlined as well
Link : Normal

A3: Look at daring to admit "I'm sorry?" (6)   _ E _ _ _ _

Look at daring to admit "I'm sorry?"

daring = bold

"I'm sorry?" = Eh?

bold to admit eh means that eh goes in bold.
b eh old
behold = look

Lovely use of punctuation to make sense of the sentence. The question mark gives a clue as to how to treat the phrase "I'm sorry" - not as an admission but as a query.

The presence of "I'm" might cause concern regarding accuracy issues since "Sorry?" is good enough for substitution by "Eh?". But "I'm sorry?" is still okay.

B3: "Serve Duke!" I cry (4,3)   _ _ _ _  O _

"Serve Duke!" I cry

duke = D
I cry = I shout
dish out = serve

Nice short clue where the presence of punctuations is purely for smooth reading and comprehension.

Duke is one of those words that will always trigger the presence of the letter D in a crossword.

C3: "Tom here!" (jeers)  (10) _ _ _ _ A _ _ I _ _

"Tom here!" (jeers) 

Tom = cat

tom here indicates catcalling

catcalling = jeers


Superb clue though I would have preferred "Here,Tom!". But then I can see why "Tom here!" is chosen (see below)


That jeers appears within quotes leads us to assume that the context of the sentence is within a play. Someone says the line "Tom here!" and playwright indicates that jeers follow this statement.If the lines were "Here, Tom!" then we might still wonder why jeers followed.

But when "Tom here!" is used , we get an instant image of someone declaring his presence in an assembly and then gets jeered.
So the image generated, reinforces the context of the reading and is smooth as can be.

Another way this clue might have been written is :
TOM  "Here!"  (jeers)
The above looks as if it came out straight from a script.

Three more clues using punctuation in creative ways ... or not.

D3: What can be wild, including "H____!"?  (5)  _ A _ _ _

E3: What you may hear from a Socialist; ______? (7)  _ _ A _ _ _ _

F3: Humped creatures? Not so (Just so .......!) (5)  _ _ _ _ S


Crossword 10

Here is crossword 10.