i Cryptic Crossword 1887 Nestor

February 24, 2017

I think tough is a fair description this puzzle which seemed to contain a lot of clues that required letters to be moved or changed and these were indicated by some quite intricate wordplay, my LOI 26a being an example of this made doubly harder by the need to know of the word “varmint”, yes I had heard it before but that was probably about 50 years ago in a black and white cowboy film and long forgotten. The saving graces here though are the four long answers around the edges, all of them excellent. Solving these gave a starting point to make some entries even if I couldn’t completely parse them like 11, 15 and 22a or in the case of 4d  parse at all. A few weeks back I would have struggled with 18d but it seems a bit old hat now the same as 17a both of these getting a bit of a tut.  Quite a few ticks today among them 12a ,23a ,1a 8d and 9d but  for just constructing all of it in reverse

COD 28a  Regressive police force is corrupt: jail place after 20 is a rarity? (10,4)

The blog from Thursday September 13th 2012 is here


5 Responses to “i Cryptic Crossword 1887 Nestor”

  1. dtw42 said

    I did the top half of this pretty quickly (and with ticks – which I rarely do! – against the clues for 8, 9, and 14). Slowed down quite a bit in the bottom half, finishing (just like MikeC back in 2012) with 26 and then 21, which I didn’t really understand.

  2. jonofwales said

    I got all the long clues round the edge pretty quickly, and worked steadily across the rest of the grid. 26ac, 21d and 4d then took quite a while longer. Challenging enough to not be too easy, but always accessible and fair, as Nestor invariably is.

    19ac got me wondering if I should be looking for a 50 and Grey elsewhere in the grid, but it appears not.

    Puzzle of the week for me.

  3. Cornick said

    I wonder if Nestor deliberately put some user-friendly long ‘uns around the edge to get us off to a good start. Mind you the clues got ultra-tricky towards the end, as we all seem to agree.
    Things made worse for me by confidently putting in SLEEK for 24d – Look across lake’s very smooth surface. Well, it seemed like a good idea at the time.

  4. AndyT said

    Agreed, Jon – puzzle of the week for me also. I made things difficult for myself by starting with The Goon Show on in the background. It’s difficult to concentrate when giggling uncontrollably, and it wasn’t until that was over that the bottom half fell into place. I’d be hard pressed to pick a COD given the number of strong contenders, but that varmint reminds me of Yosemite Sam, so it would probably be 26 in the end.

    “Sleek” is a good answer, Cornick. Unfortunate, that.

  5. Dave said

    Too many unknowns for me. Ornithic? The Adams family? Opera – La Boheme and Bedivere’s companion. So didn’t finish this one.

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