i Cryptic Crossword 1544 Morph

January 21, 2016

As befits an old Independent Prize Puzzle, this was a little tougher than we usually get from Morph. Inventive as ever, more than one raised a smile, in particular 14ac, which is perhaps accidently topical with the new Dads Army film on the way. The SE corner held me up at the end, where I’m still not sure that 15d is really fair – if MINister is going to be part of the anagram fodder, the abbreviated version should perhaps have been more clearly indicated? It’s not that common, even in crossworldland.

COD? 5d – ‘Originally Roman section of southern district in French city (9)’.

Back to April 2011:

http://www.fifteensquared.net/2011/04/16/independent-7638-morph-sat-9-apr-2011/

7 Responses to “i Cryptic Crossword 1544 Morph”

  1. AndyT said

    Always interesting on a Thursday: either a treat or a trial. Treat today! Some witty clues and a deftly handled theme put me in a good mood, and 14ac got a guffaw. I’d probably have given that one COD just for cheek, but agree that 5d is a cracker which kept me perplexed for quite a while. 15d is borderline to my mind, but no complaints otherwise.

  2. Cornick said

    Lots to admire, lots to enjoy.
    Having been reading Patrick Cockburn in the i recently, I did find an ironic kind of pathos (if that’s the word) in the theme of 1a and the hope of the Arab Spring back in 2011.

  3. sprouthater said

    As his recent appearances on Only Connect have shown, this setter has a pretty unorthodox way of thinking. I struggled with 1a and git for idiot raised its ugly head again. I thought 15d was dubious but apart from that an excellent puzzle.

  4. dtw42 said

    Did the first three-quarters of this happily and relatively smoothly; came to a grinding halt on the last eight or so (including the ones discussed above), for which I enlisted my girlfriend as some mental muscle. Finished with 1ac which we put in from the checked letters and the def without the faintest idea what the rest of it was about.

  5. allan_c said

    Now here’s a curious thing. Many of these recycled puzzles I’ve done at their first appearance (either online or in the dead tree version) but I’ve completely forgotten in the intervening five years. Occasionally something will ring a bell; that happened here with SHEA NUT which I had to check the existence of in a dictionary. But more curious is that this time round I only got KEPI from checking letters and couldn’t parse, yet when I looked at the 15^2 blog I found I’d commented that KEPI was my first one in!

    • jonofwales said

      Unless there’s a particularly memorable theme, I forget them quite quickly. Laboured for an age the other day with an old Times crossword, only to find I’d solved it on its initial appearance in 2011.

      • AndyT said

        Same here: I barely remember them at all unless there’s exotic vocabulary. This is a good thing, since I can buy crossword books confident in the knowledge that even if I’ve solved them before it won’t make the blindest bit of difference.

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