Monday, January 31, 2011

Sunday, January 30, 2011 (ST 4413)

The Sunday London Times Puzzle Number
ST 4413
Publication Date in The Sunday London Times
Sunday, December 26, 2010
Link to Full Review
Times for the Times [ST 4413]
Times for the Times Review Written By
Dave Perry
Publication Date in the Toronto Star
Saturday, January 15, 2011


If you have been wondering what happened to the blog, a confluence of events has caused some disruption to service. First, I was not able to find time to complete the puzzle that was published in the Ottawa Citizen on January 23, 2011. As a result, I didn't visit Times for the Times, thereby missing the news of extensive changes (outlined below) affecting both the London Sunday Times and the Times for the Times blog.

I now discover that ST 4412, published in the U.K. on December 19, 2010 was a special Christmas Jumbo puzzle. Clearly, a different puzzle has been syndicated in its place. I expect to complete that puzzle and provide a review sometime this coming week.

Finally, I would like to extend my congratulations to Peter Biddlecombe (aka xwd_fiend) on his appointment as Puzzles Editor at The London Sunday Times. Peter has been a bit of a mentor to me as I established this blog, gently guiding me back on course when I stumbled along the way.

Catching up on Recent Changes in London

There has recently been a series of changes affecting both The London Sunday Times and the Times for the Times website.
Today's Glossary

Selected abbreviations, people, places, words and expressions appearing in today's puzzle

Appearing in Solutions

AB2 - abbreviation [1st entry] able seaman, noun a rank of sailor in the Royal Navy above ordinary seaman and below leading seaman

brae - noun Scottish a steep bank or hillside

cock-a-hoop - adjective extremely and obviously pleased, especially about an achievement
Origin: (mid 17th century) from the phrase set cock a hoop, of unknown origin, apparently denoting the action of turning on the tap and allowing liquor to flow (prior to a drinking session)
Co-op - informal name for The Co-operative Food, a brand devised for the supermarket and convenience store business of the UK's consumers' co-operative movement

El Niño - an opera-oratorio by the American composer John Adams

ex-service - adjective British denoting or relating to former members of the armed forces: ex-service personnel

poco - adjective Italian little

Prado - the Spanish national art gallery in Madrid, established in 1818

private practice - noun  [2nd entry] British medical practice that is not part of the National Health Service

rum2 - adjective British informal, dated odd; peculiar: it's a rum business, certainly

Solution to Today's Puzzle

It seems that the style of Dave Perry's comments is even more economical than was that of Neil Talbott. I struggled with how best to include additional explanation, without rewriting the whole review. I settled on providing annotations to his comments. In the review which follows, Dave Perry's text appears in black and my annotations in red. You can connect to Times for the Times via the link in the table above to see the original review and comments.

Cryptic device Symbols used
by Falcon
Symbols used
by Dave Berry
cryptic definition
double definition
anagram SOLUTION* (fodder)*
(sounds like)
SOLUTION~ "fodder"
reversal SOLUTION<
insertion ( )
removal _ strikeout (like this)
substitution [L/R] or [L]...[R]

1PO(LIT + I)CO - {LIT (turned on) + I (one)} contained in (in) POCO (a little Italian) My Italian is practically non-existant, but I did Spanish at school, and I remember 'un poco' is a little in Spanish, so I assume Italian is the same.
5[S]CARES[S] - SCARES with initial S moved to the end.
10INTER ALIA - Ingenious and easily my COD. BAN in AL(BAN)IA is literally INTER ALIA.
11{S|YRIA}< - AIRY (open) + S (society) rev (backed)
12AB|ODE~ - AB ([able] seaman) + "OWED" {sounds like (reported) in debt}
13EX-SERVICE - The best I can come up with here is (ovERSEXed)* + VICE, but for 'endlessly' to mean 'remove two letters from both the beginning and the end' seems a helluva stretch. Can anyone offer something better?
14E|F|FRONTERY* - Edgar (Elgar's first; i.e., first letter of 'Elgar') + F (loud; abbreviation for the musical direction forte) + (ENTRY FOR)* {anagram (tricky) of ENTRY FOR}
Note: "Elgar" has become "Edgar" during the journey between the puzzle and the review at Times for the Times
17BRA|E - BRA (what's close to bust) + E (English) - It makes a change to clue BRA without using the word 'support'.
19RYES~ - RYES = "RISE" {sounds like (mentioned) RISE (increase)}
20PR|I|MA DONNA - PR (pair) + I (one) + MADONNA (rock star) - Although I'm not entirely sure I can think of any Madonna hits that could comfortably be labelled as rock songs.
22CO(CK-A-HO*)OP - (A HOCK)* {anagram (ordered) of A HOCK} in CO-OP (store)
24 E|PACT - thE (end of the; i.e., final letter of 'the') + PACT (formal agreement) - An epact is the number of days by which the last new moon has preceded the beginning of the year. Not a word I knew.
26_IAM|BI_ - hidden in willIAM BIg
27ERADICATED* - (CREATED AID)* {anagram (somehow) of CREATE AID}
28EL NINO - ON (taking place) + IN + La fenicE (empty La Fenice; i.e., the interior letters deleted) rev (recalled) - Again, I'm not entirely happy with 'empty' meaning the first and last letters of a two-word phrase. I would have preferred a single word like lounge, lodge or even lighthouse. El Niño is a 21st century opera-oratorio by American composer John Adams. I've not heard of it before, but it wasn't hard to deduce from the checkers.
29CO(HE[L/R]EN)T - HELEN with the L changed to an R, in COT
2LET GO - rev (coming up - in a down clue) hidden (some) word  in "grOG TELl"
3TURNED-ON - dd "excited by" and "TV working"
4CH|LO_E - CH (children) + LOvE {LOVE (like very much) with the V deleted (not Very)}
6{A|SSERT}< - TRESS + A rev (up) - TRESS = lock (of hair), an old chestnut.
7{EARLIER ON}* - (sIERRA LEONe)* - Another instance of the first & last letters being removed from a two-word phrase. I'm not saying it's wrong, I'm just personally not very keen on it.
anagram (revolted) of _IERRA LEON_ (insiders in Sierra Leon; i.e., letters remaining after the first and last letters have been deleted)
8STATE (DEPART)MENT - STATE + DEPARTMENT - Can 'department' mean 'an act of departing'? I imagine it probably can, but I couldn't find it defined as such anywhere. No, it's DEPART within STATEMENT, thanks to Kevin Gregg below
9BASS D|RUM - RUM (odd) preceded by (first) BASS (fish) + D (departs)
15FRENCHMEN - cd - chaps from Nice
16TURNOVER - More of a weak joke than a cryptic def.
18ADHESIVE - Another very weak cryptic def.
21M(ALI)AN - MAN (fellow) containing (boxing) ALI (champion fighter; American boxer Muhammad Ali)
23PR|ADO - PR (publicity; public relations) + ADO (trouble)
25ADA|GE - ADA (girl) + (with) GE (large US corporation; General Electric) - Saw = Adage is another old chestnut which I should've spotted earlier than I did.

Signing off for this week - Falcon


  1. 27A - ERADICATE*; Dave Perry gave it as an anagram of CREATED AID, but as you point out the clue was CREATE AID, at least in the Citizen

  2. Hi Jamie,

    I must admit that I missed that error in Dave Perry's review. You obviously have keener powers of observation than I do.

    Re: "... at least in the Citizen". The clue has to be an anagram of CREATE AID - otherwise there would be too many letters.