i Cryptic Crossword 2671 Nestor

August 30, 2019

Sprouthater’s preparing for his holidays, so it’s left to me to blog today’s Thursday reprint. Something a little more challenging to end the working week, but as it’s Nestor you know it’s going to be fair and solvable with a bit of patience. Well, for the most part, because 25d I suspect will have defeated more than one solver, myself included. The word obscure springs to mind for both wordplay and definition. 1ac I thankfully knew (mostly as the mother of Frankenstein’s creator) otherwise I might have struggled badly having made inroads from the half of the grid to the SW, only to flounder a little elsewhere. Elsewhere I was pleased to get (the unknown to me) 16ac from the wordplay, and couldn’t spell 9d. A very good puzzle overall that was well worth the time spent. Finish time as you might guess well above par for the i, with 25d at the close an out and out cheat.

COD? Lots to like as expected, with my nomination going to 6d, just because it’s so well constructed – “During endless selection, special school dismisses head who may be addicted to bars (10)”.

To June 2015:

http://www.fifteensquared.net/2015/06/11/independent-8941-nestor/

9 Responses to “i Cryptic Crossword 2671 Nestor”

  1. batarde said

    25d was a Phi special (not a compliment) and is, in my opinion, flat out wrong. Surely magpies are the chattering corvidae, and this one screeches? Therefore although I did tumble to it there was a loud harrumph. So much for the bad news; the rest was excellent. A steady, gratifying and not too long-winded solve – not what I expected having got 1ac straight away from the enumeration and then spending quite a while unpicking it to make sure. “Blimey, start as you mean to go on, why don’t you?” was my reaction to that. 🙂 My favourite puzzle this week.

  2. Michaelatcobblerscottage said

    I couldn’t get JADE at all, and don’t know how I ever would, even going through all of the possible permutations for the missing letters. An unfair clue, in my opinion; the only crossers were the two most common vowels, no initial letter, an obscure definition and strained word-play (I will take Batarde’s word for it about chattering corvidae).

    Nevertheless, I agree that this was was a good and enjoyable solve, and very rewarding indeed. I too got WOLLSTONECRAFT fairly quickly from a few crossers and the enumeration. However, I could not parse it at all – not helped by my initial mis-spelling of it as WOOLSTONECRAFT.

    CHOCOHOLIC was great!

  3. wanderlust said

    Jade got me too. Really, really spurious. Otherwise great.

  4. dtw42 said

    Let me join the chattering chorus: same end result here.

    Aside from the 25dn piffle, 1ac was last in and done from the def alone – couldn’t unpick the parsing. Everything else was fine; 16ac was fun. 12ac perhaps a bit dated now?

  5. Cornick said

    Lovely clues throughout – even 16a with which I failed. 1a a humdinger I thought.
    Except that is for 25d of course. We have a 12 months per year resident jay in our garden and, though bold as brass it’s silent as, well, silent as a jay.

    • batarde said

      We have a couple who pass through fairly regularly, but they never have anything to say for themselves. The magpies however are very chatty. One of them was pouring scorn on our cat from the shed roof yesterday evening – she just hates it when they do that, which is often.

  6. Brakewynde said

    On the whole a welcome challenge after a fortnight of unremarkable puzzles. I’ve been guilty of doing Word Wheel, Zygolex, Concise Crossword, Word Ladder and even Codeword just to fill a lunch break!

    Here’s a spanner in the works for 25:

    A chatterer can be a number of varieties of bird, most of which flutter. So the homonyms BATE and BAIT work slightly better IMHO…

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