i Prize Cryptic Crossword 2223 by Phi

March 31, 2018

Saturday 24th March 2018

In which 15a – One-eyed – was the gateway clue to a group of famous one-eyed figures. Xenekis, Stainer, Cyclops, Tenniel and Thurber.  Which is all quite nifty, but completely went over my head, alas; having Cyclops and One-eyed in the same puzzle didn’t jump out at me, and I’m unfamiliar with the physiognomies of the other gentlemen.

I did notice some other things though:  26d Dry – the phrase is ‘on’ not ‘off’ the wagon. 4d Sis – Girl’s name not implicated in crimes – cropped up again in yesterday’s Phi as ‘Girl’s nameless crimes’. 12d Tricyclists – not wheeled vehicles, obviously.

Why do these things happen with Phi and not other setters?  Well, we could speculate that a) He’s a Titan amongst setters who is trusted by the editor and doesn’t get the scrutiny afforded to a novice b) He’s good enough to feel, maybe, that he doesn’t need to get a mate to do a test solve c) He’s extraordinarily prolific and d) He’s only human after all.

So a few unusual glyphs in my margin from last Saturday, but also some ticks, with the COD going to the afore-mentioned gateway clue:

15a With limited vision, you’ll be absorbed by love and desire (3-4)

More discussion can be seen over at Fifteensquared.

2 Responses to “i Prize Cryptic Crossword 2223 by Phi”

  1. batarde said

    Two no balls in one puzzle … hmm. I wasn’t very impressed with that and the theme passed me by, but one has to make allowances – or does one? It has to be said that a comparison between this and today’s puzzle by the ever-meticulous Klingsor is really not to Phi’s advantage. I’m pleased to see that his response on the other side was more gracious than usual, and I’ve made a mental note to have a go at passing off my mistakes as metonymy and see how far that gets me. Let’s hope normal service is resumed next week.

  2. jonofwales said

    In agreement with Batarde’s comment above, really. Not Phi’s finest moment, but then again not the editor’s either. This week’s though is a cracker, and I thoroughly enjoyed Phi’s Good Friday offering. So some you win, some you lose.

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