i Cryptic Crossword 2808 Tees

February 7, 2020

One of the signs of advancing mortality, surely, must be a greater luxuiance in the growth of hair in one’s ears. It is several years since the barber first asked me if I wanted him to deal with mine, and it was a moment when I looked into the mirror and realised I was turning into my grandfather… But I never knew there was a word for them. However, like the other obscure-ish words that I had to check up on, it was fairly clued and with helpful crossing letters. Other words which were unknown to me were: COLLOCATE; AFTERMATH, to mean the grass growing after it is mown; IMPROMPTU as a noun for a speech, rather than as an adjective meaning unrehearsed.

This was a relatively straightforward crossword from Tees, which I solved in about my typical one hour, without help, other than to check up on the above-mentioned answers. Everything was fairly clued and gettable. A little more general knowledge than is usual was called for; the Earl of Rochester I vaguely recall from history lessons years ago, and I suppose most people know about Robert the Bruce and Bannockburn. “Green Man” was an amusing definition for TRAINEE, as was “knight” for horse. My only very minor quibble was to wonder whether COALPIT should be two words, rather than one.

My nomination for Clue of the Day goes to the nicely allusive 8d: “Anything but public transport for spooks” (6,7)”.

Back to August 2015 for its first outing: http://www.fifteensquared.net/2015/08/27/independent-9007-by-tees/

11 Responses to “i Cryptic Crossword 2808 Tees”

  1. dtw42 said

    I sped through about 90% of this, then spent as long again on my last five (which were 2dn, 4dn, 10ac, 13ac, and 14ac). 14ac was last to fall, and I grumbled a bit over the definition of TRAGI. and 15²’s explanation as to why Indy is referred to as a professor seems a bit shaky to me. Throughout the series, he’s referred to as doctor Jones; in Last Crusade it’s his dad Henry who’s professor Jones. But hey; whatever.

  2. jonofwales said

    So this week we’ve saved the best for last! Good throughout, of about average difficulty, and with all those unknowns as fairly clued as you would like. My only regret is that everybody else thought this was straightforward as well – I often struggle with Tees, and was rather hoping I’d finally got the measure of him.

  3. Topsy said

    Not as straightforward for me but not irritating or frustrating. Fortunately, I knew the pilgrim so the knight was no problem. No grumbles really but I agree that Indy is not a professor. I did like 1a! As an aside, does anyone else find that they read the news differently straight after doing the crossword, or is it just me?

  4. Topsy said

    dtw, it appears we are wrong. In the Last Crusade Indy is a professor. I have never watched the series myself so I googled it. Oh the education we receive from crossword setters!

    • saboteur said

      In my (admittedly limited) experience, nearly everyone who teaches in an American university seems to be titled a professor.

      • dtw42 said

        Yeah, I’m sure he is. It’s just that since he’s universally known as “doctor Jones”, it seems a bit odd to call him something else in a passing reference in a crossword clue. Hey ho.

        FWIW, I’ve watched the series multiple times, esp. Last Crusade (I was working in the local cinema when it came out), which has a soundtrack I consistently consider one of my top 3 of all time…

  5. Topsy said

    On the subject of how we read and perceive things I have a new word for you “scotomisation”. To me, the headline on page 8 read “Apologetic Trump”…….

  6. batarde said

    That was a pleasure, posing a bit of a challenge whilst being quite accessible to most solvers given a positive attitude and some perseverance. Steady progress with no real hold ups until the very end: that would be 13ac. To my way of thinking that definition could have stood just a teensy bit of tightening, but the wordplay is rock solid. It does seem to go that way quite often with Tees … he’s a devious definer, all right.

    • saboteur said

      Yes. Perhaps something like “Old statesman” would have been tighter, indicating to the solver that we were looking for a person from history, and it would not have tarnished the nice surface reading.

  7. Cornick said

    Definitely easier than the average Tees, and yes, probably about average for the i.
    Lots of good quality stuff though – I did enjoy 1a in particular.
    LOI was 13a for me; partly because ‘round about’ can mean so very many different things, and partly because I knew precisely nothing about Rochester, a decent Kentish Town, also being an Earl.

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