The Stickler Weekly 232 Clue Hints

(click on the clue number to see the hint)

Click on underlined text for explanation of terms.

Need more hints for these or other clues? Just leave a reply below.


1-across


12-across

13-across

16-across

17-across

21-across

25-across

28-across

1-down

3-down

5-down

7-down


17-down

18-down

20-down


Either a mixture of letters is placed inside or outside other letters, or letters are placed inside or outside a mixture of letters. An anagram indicator and containment indicator will be present.
A pointer that signifies the placing of one or more parts of a clue (or their equivalents) on the INSIDE of one or more parts of a clue (or their equivalents).

Examples: held by, kept by, embraced by - anything that creates the image of being contained.

A word or series of words that signify the removal of a letter, letters, word or words (or their equivalents) from other parts of the clue (or their equivalents).

Examples: taken from, decreased by, less.

A pointer that signifies the placing of one or more parts of a clue (or their equivalents) around the OUTSIDE of one or more parts of a clue (or their equivalents).

Examples: holding, keeping, embracing - anything that creates the image of containment.

A pointer that signifies the placing of one or more parts of a clue (or their equivalents) around the OUTSIDE of one or more parts of a clue (or their equivalents).

Examples: holding, keeping, embracing - anything that creates the image of containment.

A word or series of words that signify a mixing-up of letters.

Examples: changed, at sea, confused, all over the place - anything that indicates change or jumbling.

Either a mixture of letters is placed inside or outside other letters, or letters are placed inside or outside a mixture of letters. An anagram indicator and containment indicator will be present.
The structure of the answer involves either letters placed outside other letters, or letters placed inside other letters. Which type of container clue is determined by an appropriate container indicator.
A type of clue that involves the mixing up of letters without the inclusion of a letter or letters. This clue will have an anagram indicator to signify jumbling and a subtraction indicator to signify the removal of a letter or letters.

A removed letter may be as seen in the clue, an abbreviation for a word in the clue, or the result of another cryptic device like taking the initial letter from a word. Removed letters may be a whole word as seen in a clue, the synonym of a word in the clue (if that synonym is contiguous within the anagram fodder), or the result of another cryptic device like taking the middle two letters from a word.

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33 Responses to The Stickler Weekly 232 Clue Hints

  1. Patrick Lewis says:

    ‘Tis done. SW corner was the last to go and the biggest battle was 15d which required some lateral thinking but turned out to be word perfect clue-wise. Thanks as always, David, for this wonderful entertainment.

  2. Richard Sternes says:

    Well Done – Patrick
    Would be interested to hear your thoughts on 15d as well as 14a
    Confusion elsewhere too.
    Whats with “missing” in 12a (answer is quite clear)
    & unsure of “seller” in 5d (have an answer here too).

  3. Patrick Lewis says:

    Thanks Richard – quite chuffed to be first poster this week too.
    The trickiness of both 14a and 15a seems to me to lie in the definitions.
    14a, first and foremost, may seem a bit of a stretch, but knowing David, it’s sure to be listed somewhere.
    15a – the definition may not be what you think it is. Beginning but not the beginning!
    12a – as in overseas help, the WHOLE team – what if one player has to be replaced?
    5d – I had to google to confirm this one.

    I had 11a back to front for a while, which slowed things up a bit!

    • Patrick Lewis says:

      15d. Not 15a.

      • Richard Sternes says:

        All Good Patrick & Thanks…
        Put away, fresh look makes all the difference.
        Not a major Cricket fan, need to reconsider 12a.
        May be on the wrong track with 5d – need to, re-investigate.

  4. Arthur Maynard says:

    A first class return to service this week. I struggled through yesterday, and had to resort to clue hints today. But I finally made it.
    I do not understand the parsing of 12a. The answer is obvious. The ? tells me to look carefully. Patrick’s suggestion does not help me. In our backyard it was one out all out, but that has nothing to do with this conundrum. Another poster may provide help here. Meanwhile I will continue to gnaw on the bone.
    Clue hints took me to 16a, 21a 28a, 7dd and 9d. Very obvious with that big of direction.
    Enjoyed working on 22a (false starts until I got a cross to help) 23d
    I wondered whether you David a boating holiday in mind with the references to sails and regattas.

    • Richard Sternes says:

      As I said, what would I know about Cricket???
      Is the One missing the RESERVE, he who “carries the Drinks”???
      Still pondering 5d.

      • Arthur Maynard says:

        Richard
        12a I googled the rules of cricket and now I find they indicate that there is an extra person, who you have described. He stands in if a team member is injured. He is not allowed to bat, bowl, wicket keep or captain the team, so he can only be a fieldsman or a runner. I am not fully convinced, but seem to recall that when the team is announced there is a name listed beside this position. Then it is a matter of arithmetic?
        5d have you googled the word you have? The definition should come up first go. Computers and the internet have led to a profusion of new words. This is a fusion of two concepts reduced to the minimum number of letters.

  5. Steve Ball says:

    I finished this yesterday but am waiting to be hit by an understanding of 12-across as well as 22-across where, as far as I can see, there’s only one word that fits. No one else has mentioned 22-cross so I’m clearly missing something obvious.

    Waiting …

    • Patrick Lewis says:

      12a – If you don’t like the whole team idea, how about 12 (as in 12a) missing one…..?
      22a – a deep breath drawn in? Apart from the elemental symbol, The 80s-90s generation?
      Just guessing

  6. Steve Ball says:

    Patrick,
    thanks for the reply.
    12-ac I like your suggestion. “Minus one cricket team” would have made it easier, but once you see it, it’s obvious.
    22-ac A breath usually draws in air, which is 80% nitrogen, and I’m missing your “80s-90s generation” allusion.

    • Arthur Maynard says:

      22a Check the periodic table for the symbol for this element. So it is drawn in – as part of a breath, and when it is abbreviated it is written/drawn it is done in an “O” formation.
      That is my take.

    • Patrick Lewis says:

      Steve,
      X gen-eration (formation) born in the 1980’s and Y for the 1990’s, but that’s a big stretch. What Arthur says is probably quite enough. Is it an &lit?

      • Arthur Maynard says:

        I originally thought it was purely cryptic, because on a surface reading it resolves very simply into the symbol. But when Patrick raised the issue of breathing. It opened another option – the &lit.
        David has given us a few &lits lately, and I suspect as you do that this is one.
        I often have difficulty in distinguishing an &lit from a cryptic clue, and I struggle to explain the &lit to my learners at U3A

        • Steve Ball says:

          Arthur,
          I’m surprised that you have so far missed the distinction that sets an &lit. apart from a ‘standard’ cryptic clue. Perhaps if we come at this from the other direction (which is how the clues evolved anyway). I don’t remember exactly where I read the various bits of this story and I’ve forgotten the details, but I believe the gist is correct, and that’s all we need. I imagine David will be able to supply details and corrections if needed.

          First, someone invented what we call the ‘normal’ or ‘quick’ crossword puzzle, where the clues were definitions (or sometimes general knowledge questions).

          Then, one day someone who was about to clue, say, ENRAGED as “Very angry (7)” realised that, if they changed that to “Horribly angered (7)” then the clue was not only a definition of ENRAGED, there was also a second, ‘literal’, indication of the answer: you could ignore the meaning of “angered” and just treat the letters ‘literally’ and write them “horribly”, i.e. anagrammed, to get ENRAGED.

          This new game of hiding ‘literal’ indications of the answer in the clue was much more fun for both the setter and the solver but it wasn’t always easy to create a viable clue without twisting the language a bit. A solver could probably figure out that the “Some” in “Some assassin in Japan (5)” pointed to NINJA being hidden in (assassi)N IN JA(pan), but what was the solver of a crossword puzzle to make of something like “I’m one involved with cost (9)”?

          To let solvers know what was needed, a setter (or perhaps his editor) decided that such clues should be indicated by appending “and literally so”. So, faced with “I’m one involved with cost (9) (and literally so)” the solver was expected to figure out that “I’m one” and “cost” had to be anagrammed – “Involved” – to make ECONOMIST.

          Once this tradition was established, space being what it is in newspapers, “(and literally so)” became abbreviated to “(&lit.)”.

          So now we had puzzles with ‘normal’, definition-type clues with a peppering of these newer, ‘&lits.’ As might be expected, interest in the normal clues waned but the problem was that it was just too hard to find enough words for which you could write &lits. to fill a whole puzzle. This was solved when a setter somewhere (the UK, I beleive) decided that, to make a whole puzzle of ‘literal’ clues, it was okay for a clue to have *two* parts, one being the definition and the other being the ‘literal’ indication, and that these two parts should read as a seamless whole. These are the clues that we now consider ‘standard’ cryptic crossword clues. So, for example, UNISON could be clued as “Tertiary institution’s operating with complete agreement (6)” where “Tertiary institution’s operating” gives UNIS ON and is the ‘literal’ indication of the answer, and “complete agreement” is the definition.

          Of course it’s sometimes still possible to construct a clue with one piece which is both a definition and a ‘literal’ indication of the answer like “Core matter of Dante’s Inferno (3)” which is both a definition of SIN as well as a ‘literal’ indication: (dante)S IN(ferno). Perhaps what’s confusing is that these clues are still called &lits. because now *all* cryptic crossword clues contain a ‘literal’ indication of the answer. What sets these clues apart is that, rather having a separate definition, the piece that is the ‘literal’ indication also does double-duty as the definition. Maybe they should be called “all-in-1” or something similar.

          Does that help?

          Steve = : ^ )

          • Patrick Lewis says:

            Thanks Steve,
            So if I’ve got this right, in an &lit the wordplay indicator doubles as part of the definition – as in #230, 2d -‘One relocated to Saturn’ would be defined as an astronaut (no tourists as yet!) which is also an anagram of ‘A’ relocated ‘to Saturn’.

            The difficulty in identifying an &lit seems to arise when the definition is broad or less precise, as in 22a, where ‘drawn in’ (breathed) may include or refer to other elements, as you pointed out. However, it is also ‘drawn’ (written) in an O formation (so is a circle) – so can we say this is an &lit? If so, which part is the definition? Maybe it’s just cryptic or a double definition.

            Personally though, I’m not too bothered about technicalities as long as I can just work out the clue – whereby the solving of the wordplay matches the definition however it is presented, or vice versa.

          • Steve Ball says:

            “So if I’ve got this right, in an &lit the wordplay indicator doubles as part of the definition”.

            You haven’t (quite) got it right. The *entire clue* (not just the wordplay indicator) doubles as *all* of the definition (not just part of it). There is nothing else; there’s just one piece that both defines the answer, and also provides a ‘literal’ path to the answer.

            But your example is good. “One relocated to Saturn?” = A + stronaut, and *is* an &lit. Notice that *the whole clue* is doing both jobs.

            I’m still not sure how “It’s drawn in an ‘O’ formation” is supposed to work so it’s hard for me to have an opinion about it. No doubt my understanding will grow in the fullness of time.

          • Patrick Lewis says:

            Ok, got it, Steve, the *whole* clue. That does make 22a seem like an &lit – if you accept the elemental symbol as being formed thus. Then there’s the alternate (double) definition of ‘It is drawn in’. Perhaps David will give a clear explanation on Wednesday, but whatever way, it works well enough for me.

          • Arthur Maynard says:

            Thanks Steve.
            The information on the development of clues is informative.
            In his book Cross Words Alec Robins suggests that & lit clues should be read twice – once for the definition, and again for the word play. This is in accord with your final paragraph.
            As a solver I am a bit like Patrick. l enjoy solving the puzzle do not get particularly concerned about the type of clue. Additionally I always parse the clue to satisfy myself that it my answer is kosher. The clue type is not particularly relevant to me. Nor is it relevant to most of my solving colleagues
            In tutoring and mentoring for crossword groups, I work through most of the clue types, identifying the definition, the word play, and the indicator with material drawn form a variety of sources, and it is under constant review.
            & lit clues have proven the most difficult for me to explain and for others to grasp. Good examples are hard to find, and it is difficult to speak with authority when either party does not have a clear understanding of the principle.
            Once we complete the short period of tuition, and commence actually solving puzzles, we mostly ignore the clue type, so we join Patrick until somebody asks a question.

          • Patrick Lewis says:

            Thanks to you, Steve, I just identified an &lit clue in #42, which I’ve been working on:
            Shot ultimately landing next to a pin (3-2) = TAP-IN
            Sure enough, David identifies it as an &lit in the clue hints, but then adds: ‘most of the answer is in the clear’ – which I don’t get at all.

            And yes, Arthur, as long as I can match the wordplay and definition, that’s all that really matters to me. Nevertheless, where there is some uncertainty it does provide some grist to the mill of this blog/forum!

            I do balk a little when the answer seems to stretch the meaning of the definition somewhat but then as I said, David always has a reference somewhere up his sleeve – which could be called ‘setter’s license’ I suppose, and after all, it’s all part of the fun.

          • Steve Ball says:

            Patrick,
            yes, that clue is an &lit. The whole clue is the definition (you need to know a little about golf) and the whole clue is a wordplay: (sho)T (next to) A PIN.

            When part of an answer is “in the clear” it means that it appears in the clue itself; no interpretation is necessary. So here, you have to interpret “Shot ultimately” as T, but then APIN is given, “in the clear” (or “en clair” if you want to be pretentious), in the clue. Get it?

          • Patrick Lewis says:

            Got it and thanks again, Steve.

          • Steve Ball says:

            “I do balk a little when the answer seems to stretch the meaning of the definition somewhat but then as I said, David always has a reference somewhere up his sleeve – which could be called ‘setter’s license’ …”

            ‘Stretching’ is fine as long as the connection doesn’t break. Whenever I’ve questioned David over a definition I didn’t understand, he’s always been able to back it up by reference to a dictionary (not his sleeve). I think calling it “setter’s licence” implies that he’s taking liberties, and I’ve never observed that he does.

          • Greg Mansell says:

            Running late this week. Just wanted to register my complete agreement with everything that Steve has said about &lit clues. Well explained!

  7. Wendy Simpson says:

    Being a sailor, my gold star is 25a

  8. Christine Hulley says:

    Struggled this week but got there at last. Do not understand 27a, will await the answers next week.

    • Arthur Maynard says:

      Christine
      This means of identification became widespread in the banking industry. Now you can get away without one for most purchases. “one” is an abbreviation of oneself. add temperature and you get liquid measurement.

  9. Andrew Gibson says:

    One of the best I have seen in a long time! But then again they are all good. Thanks again David.

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