i Cryptic Crossword 2417 Hob

November 6, 2018

This puzzle first appeared on 28th August 2014, which happened to be 14/21’s 200th birthday. A belated many happy returns, then. The theme is a bit broader than that however, with plenty of allusions dotted about in clues and solutions.

Hob can be a very tricky setter, I think, but this crossword turned out to be anything but. 10ac got a grimace because it doesn’t belong in a daily puzzle; I am not pro 2d, and so that got another. 26 was new to me, but you live and learn; otherwise nothing much to remark upon, vocabulary-wise. Hob’s exuberant clue writing style was well to the fore – sometimes that can be distinctly wearing, but today it all felt like good fun, although 3d is a shade too puerile for my taste. 19 and 24 both made me smile, but I’m picking 6d as my COD because it’s a nice spot and amusingly phrased:

“Setter beset by Grandma’s unwholesome atmosphere (6)”

Solutions, parsing and discussion may all be found at Fifteensquared.


5 Responses to “i Cryptic Crossword 2417 Hob”

  1. jonofwales said

    I thought this was fun. A very lose theme, thankfully, as I know little about 21d. Favourites were your COD and 9ac.

    Both 7ac and 26ac were quite obscure, but left me feeling quietly pleased with myself on solving correctly. 10ac I was convinced couldn’t be a real word, but, well…. The chess abbreviation in 1d was perhaps a little out of place in a daily cryptic, and the dramatist referenced in the wordplay for 24d was more than obscure. The rest though was pretty accessible, especially for Hob.

  2. Michaelatcobblerscottage said

    I found this to be irritating and not particularly satisfying, although most of it was fairly clued, in my opinion, and I agree with jonofwales that quite a lot of it was very accessible. AMBO I knew, for some reason.

    I had vaguely heard of Le Fanu. 24D was a simple clue, and a quick internet search confirmed the answer and also helped with Carmilla; Le Fanu was not directly referenced in 1D’s clue, and without the internet check I would have had no idea of how the definition worked (the wordplay was ok, once the checking letters were in place).

    I had no idea what the answer to 26A was, or how to get it from the wordplay. I guessed it might be something to do with golf, but by this point I had not got sufficient interest left to look up another list and so left it blank. That meant I didn’t bother with 24D either, as that would have involved trawling through yet another list.

  3. Cornick said

    He’s a bit good this Hob fellow – and his surface readings are some of the most fun I can remember in a crossword.
    Quite a wide range of general knowledge required today, which fortunately just crept within the things I know – almost… I did need to look up Majolica to check, but it had to be that from the wordplay.

  4. sprouthater said

    Very strange I too found the clues irritating but the answers kept coming so I persevered, didn’t finish though got stuck in the SE corner with 24ac and 24dn, Borders for initials hmmm and 24dn never heard of him and I would pronounce Synge as Singe. I did write COD next to 6ac though.

  5. I much prefer puzzles that don’t need you to have access to goggle. i order to solve. Never heard of the golfer or the 1d book.

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