i Cryptic Crossword 1850 Crosophile

January 12, 2017

Most solvers back in 2012 seem to have found this on the easy side, but I must admit to struggling badly, especially in the SE corner where I just couldn’t make progress for far, far too long. I should have got 21d quicker based on the definition alone, but I didn’t, so spent a long time staring at empty space and clues I just couldn’t get a hold on. A few stray clues elsewhere in the grid left me feeling more relieved than anything when I eventually staggered across the finish line.

COD? 21ac – ‘Feeble wordplay? Yes (4)’.

All the answers and more can be found here:



5 Responses to “i Cryptic Crossword 1850 Crosophile”

  1. dtw42 said

    I started quickly and then tailed off so that the last eight or so were coming at a rate of about one every ten minutes. SE corner was last area for me, but the whole was fairly enjoyable with nothing contentious (apart from 10ac – is a detail an UNimportant area? I’ll give up proofreading, then). My CoD would be 17dn, which was very sneaky and garnered an “oooh” of approval when the penny dropped.

  2. AndyT said

    A detail can be unimportant in common parlance, but of course when it comes to crosswords that’s precisely where the devil hides – I rather liked the clue because of that. In fact the whole thing was a pleasure to solve and scored an impressive tally of ticks. 13 is worth a mention, I feel, but it was 17 which really got my attention too.

  3. sprouthater said

    Yes SE corner was a problem here too. I was dubious about detail but a check in the dictionary showed unimportant as a
    definition. I don’t really get 29a though and can’t see which part of 26d is a synonym of spine.

    • Cornick said

      With 26d the whole clue reads as a rather fine description of the spines found on sloe trees (blackthorn). So it’s an &Lit.
      29a seems like a straightforward 2-part charade, host + el.

  4. Cornick said

    I got the four four-letterers in the middle of the grid very quickly (hooray!) but that then left me with 4 mini puzzles and nothing to link them. I don’t like that.
    Never mind, hauled myself over the line eventually, even if feeling rather grumpy.

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