i Prize Cryptic Crossword 1636 by Phi

May 14, 2016

Saturday 7th May 2016

Many at Fifteensquared found this a tougher than usual Phi, but I thought it was about average and, as so often happens with this setter, there’s a theme and also a Nina, both missed by me; AMIS appears hidden in the row below CARRIAGE AND PAIR, and some of his novels — TIME’S ARROW, LONDON FIELDS, SUCCESS, and MONEY make an appearance.

I’ve not too much to say about it, really (for once!) so here’s my COD:

5d  Head girl going bottomless in school dance – the stuff of life! (10)

And the 2011 blog can be found by clicking here.

Now for the nerdy bit: after Monk’s question yesterday in the Fifteensquared comments asking if it was possible to come up with a triple pangram on a standard grid with no obscurities and an average word length of over 7, I had a go myself and did so after an hour or two of pottering on Crossword Compiler with my weirdest word being SPIV.  Actually that’s a lie, it was an a.w.l. of exactly 7 – to get over that you would need at least a couple of rows where the lights couldn’t be split (7/7 or whatever) which would, I suspect, become problematic.

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4 Responses to “i Prize Cryptic Crossword 1636 by Phi”

  1. AndyT said

    I think I found it about average too, and of course the nina and theme went undetected. My two favourites were 9ac and 20d, but I have “nope” next to 24d because I cannot accept “veneer” as a synonym for “polish”. Well, it just isn’t, is it?

    With regard to the nerdy bit, jolly well done. I hope we can expect to have a crack at your puzzle in due course? “Spiv” isn’t in the least obscure if you ask me – certainly not in the same league as those Japanese flipflops or the Egyptian dancers.

    • Cornick said

      Cheers, I just might give it a go. I think the ‘proper’ setters must find triples challenging because they try to avoid making it too obvious. Not me. Here’s a taster for what might, then, be my 1 across:
      Curious short, quick lazzi being improvised (9)
      Agree on veneer/ polish – of course.

  2. jonofwales said

    I remember struggling with this one, and the Nina which I naturally missed. The rest though is lost in the mists of time. 🙂

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