Category Archives: My Crosswords

Cryptic Crossword – Numpty / 3 (Answers)

This post discusses the answers to the last cryptic crossword I posted on this blog.  This one also has a “ghost theme” relating to one of my favourite films – Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. There are quite a few things I wasn’t happy with in this effort, but I’ve noted these below.

Across:

9. AQUITAINE: QUIT = “leave” + A1 = “the best” replaces N = “end of excursion” in ANNE = “Princess”

10. RHONE: hidden answer

11. INSTEAD: (DANTE IS)*

12. FLOODED: LOO = “lavatory” in (D = “diamond” in FED = “FBI agent”

13. TWITS: T + WITS

14. ARCHETYPE: (CHEE[se] PARTY) *; the S and the E to drop are “starters of stilton and emmental”

16. OVERSPECIALIZES: OVER = “on”  + (ELIZA’S SPICE)*

19. SORROWING:  (RINGO’S)* around ROW = “disagreement”

21. HINDI: [s]HINDI[g]

22. PEOPLED: = (POPE LED)*

23. ETERNAL: LAN = “a network” + RETE reversed. I wasn’t terribly happy with this – RETE for network is a bit too Azed-ish for this kind of crossword

24. WEEPS: WEE = “small” + PS = “note at the end of letter”

25. ADDRESSEE: DRESS = “a frock” in A = “a” +  DEE = “flower”

Down:

1. VARIATIONS: cryptic definition; probably much too easy – I find good cryptic definitions very hard to write.

2. SUNSHINE: = (HUSSEIN’S N)*

3. OTHERS: (M)OTHER’S; I probably should avoid M for Mark, since it’s as a currency abbreviation it’s a bit obscure now.

4. MIND: = initial letters of “move in new direction”; the charity is the Nation Association for Mental Health, known as Mind.

5. PERFECTING: PER = “for” + (DE)FECTING = “leaving for another country” without DE = “Germany”; Chambers supports the “for” sense of PER, but I’m a bit unhappy about using it, since I’m aiming for daily crossword difficulty.

6. ARBOREAL: LARA = “woman” reversed over BORE = “hole”

7. GONDRY = GON(E) DRY = “out of ideas” without the middle letter, referring to Michel Gondry, director of the wonderful film “23a 2d of the 17d 4d”. I’m not sure about “out of ideas”, but I was having trouble clueing this in a satisfactory way.

8. HEAD: double definition

14. AMERINDIAN: DI = “princess” in (MARIANNE)*

15. ENSHIELDED: E = “drug”+ LD = “lethal dose”, as in LD50 + ED = “journalist” all after SH = “silence” in [b]ENI[n]

17. SPOTLESS: (SOS SPELT)*

18. ZANINESS = IN AZ = “in map” reversed + NESS = “headland”

20. REOPEN: (ROPE)* + NE reversed; this clue got a commendation in Paul’s clue competition

21. HEEDED: HE + (CONC)EDED

22. PAWN: PA = “father” + initial letters of “would not”

23. EDDY: hidden answer

Cryptic Crossword – Numpty / 3

This is another cryptic crossword that I’d been writing clues for in dribs and drabs for ages.  I’m not very satisfied with this either – my impression is that it’s mostly rather too easy, but for a couple of slightly obscure words.  However, there are a few that I’m quite proud of. Anyway, comments and suggestions are very welcome.

Download cryptic crossword number 3 [PDF]

As before, I will update this post with a link to the answers and self-critical fifteensquared-style commentary fairly soon :) You can find the answers to this crossword in another post now.

Cryptic Crossword – Numpty / 2 (Answers)

This post discusses the answers to the cryptic crossword I posted on this blog a couple of weeks ago.  There’s a sort of “ghost theme” – The 11a, 6a and The 15d all appear in 24, 22.

Across:

5. SHUCKS: Double definition
6. WALTER: (TRAWLE)*
9. GRAMMY: Cryptic definition
10. ABETTING: not A BETTING man
11. DUDE: “doubts initially” = D in “right” = DUE
12. DIMINISHES: “wheels?” = MINI in “choice of meals” = DISHES. I’m not sure this is really fair – lots of people don’t seem to like “on” to indicate inclusion and perhaps MINI for “wheels?” is a bit tough. However, the surface was nice enough that I wanted to keep it anyway.
13. STRAIGHTEST: “way” = ST around (THIS GREAT)*
18. PARTITIONS: Double definition. I’m not sure about the second definition, which is descriptive…
21. RAGS: “Kings” = RS hiding “silver” = AG
23. MINUET: swap last two letters of “almost too small to see” = MINUTE. Perhaps too easy?
24, 22. THE BIG LEBOWSKI: (GEEKS WITH BILBO)*. (This clue got a commendation in Paul’s clue competition.)
25. COWERS: “lower” = COW + “hesitations” = ERS. (It’s a shame that it had to be “lower” for this construction to work because it slightly spoils the surface.)

Down

1. YUMMIEST: “turn” = U in (“first” = IST taking E (“drug-taking” after “year” = Y “two-thousand” = MM)
2. OKAYED: (OAKED + Y)*
3. HAZELNUT: (LAZE)* in (HUNT)*
4. STATES: “Declare” = STATE + “the end of terms” = S
5. SPROUT: SPR + OUT
7. RUNNER: “character” = RUNE + “writing” = R (from the 3 Rs) has got “a bit of novelty” = N.
8. HAEMOGLOBIN: GLO[W] in (BOHEMIAN)*. “something of a glow” for GLO is a bit poor.
14. AUTISTIC: Hidden answer
15. STRANGER: “holy man” = ST + “Yogi’s nemesis” = RANGER (Smith)
16. LAMENT: AMEN in LT
17. AGREES: A + “thousand” = G + “engineers” = RE + “east” = E + “old Bob” = S
19. TROWEL: “can” = TIN + (LOWER)*, remove IN
20. SYMBOL: (“times” = BY)< in “the sun” = SOL about “a month” = M

Cryptic Crossword – Numpty / 2

This is the second 15×15 cryptic crossword that I’ve tried to set, dating from some time last year.  There are a few things in here that I wouldn’t do nowadays, but rather than rewrite clues for the same words over and over, I think it’s best to just see what people think and move on.  (The feedback I’ve had so far suggests that it’s mostly quite easy.)

Download crossword number 2 [PDF]

I will update this post with a link to the answers in a couple of days. You can find the answers and explanations of the clues in this crossword in this other post.