The Stickler Weekly 29 Solution

The humble double-definition clue in some ways defines what cryptic crosswords are all about (two distinct paths to the answer), but in other ways is nothing like a typical cryptic clue. Let me explain. It’s very tempting to cite double definitions to new solvers as they are simple to explain, however, there’s very little in a standard double-definition clue that provides insight into the world of cryptic solving. Despite their simplicity in construction, solving them can be extremely difficult, as there are no pointers or indicators to help arrive at an answer. Worse still, there’s no easy way to determine whether a clue is a double definition: while most of them are short, they don’t have to be. There are two types of double-definition clue: true ones and pseudo ones. A true double-definition clue gives two meanings for two different words, that is, the two words are spelt the same but have different origins and are listed separately in a dictionary. “Heavy metal guitarist (4)” = LEAD is an example. A pseudo one gives two meanings for the same word, that is, the two meanings are related but their relationship is disguised in the clue. This is often done using a different part of speech. “Suspect brains (5)” = SENSE is an example. Here a verb and noun of the same word have been used. I’m not a big fan of pseudo double definitions and actively avoid them, however, they are popular in Australian, NZ and UK cryptics.
Setters can play a role in determining how hard a double-definition is by their choice of crossing letters. If the initial is missing and cross letters are common (E, I, A etc), then solving is going to be difficult, and there is always the possibility an alternative answer is available especially if it’s a psuedo double-definition clue.

Across Answers and Clues Explanations
1 FURBELOW
Silky stuff underneath flounce (8) FUR + BELOW
6 PURIM
Jewish festival turned up before key part of spectacles (5) UP reversed + RIM
9 SAVER
Welcome accepted by sister, one in recovery (5) SR outside AVE
11 EVICTORS
They put out last of the winners (8) TH(E) + VICTORS
12 BARBEL
Be after rod with long catfish feature (6) (BE after BAR) + L
14 SANDHILL
Feature of beach, including hotel, cutting through a layer of rock (8) (AND + H) inside SILL
15 TEEN
Youngster’s tin pinched from tuckshop (4) CANTEEN minus CAN
18 &
28-ac
DRUG CHEAT
Athlete who uses doctor caught wrongly taking ecstasy (4,5) DR + (anagram of CAUGHT outside E)
20 SNAPPISH
Sharp back pains reduced by one with dodgy hips (8) (PAINS reversed minus I) + anagram of HIPS
24 FEINTS
Federer’s first set irregularly punctuated by popular plays (6) (F)EDERER + (anagram of SET outside IN)
25 LYREBIRD
Try leaving new production of terribly dry mimic (8) Anagram of TERRIBLY DRY minus TRY
27 ICEBLOCKS
Confused bloke is holding two separate lots of cold treats (9) Anagram of BLOKE IS outside (C + C separately)
29 GULLS
Lazy person moved around collecting large mugs (5) SLUG reversed outside L
30 SUNDRESS
Narrative’s primary character, penned by Dr Seuss, fashioned a frock (8) (N)ARRATIVE inside anagram of DR SEUSS
 Down  Answers and Clues Explanations
2 UNVEILS
Reveals representation of Venus inscribed by the Italian? (7) Anagram of VENUS outside IL
3 BERATING
Live with rank carpeting (8) BE + RATING
4 LAGERPHONE
Record broken by mature shearer finally – perfect top ringer (10) LP outside [AGE + SHEARE(R)] + HONE
5 &
10-ac
WIND GENERATOR
Turn to river after a green ruined clean power source (4,9) WIND + [(TO + R) after anagram of A GREEN]
6 PURDAH
State of social isolation, that’s pure mostly, had returned (6) (PUR)E + HAD reversed
7 RETABLE
Shelf placed behind an altar by retired expert (7) RET + ABLE
8 MARBLING
Distribution of fat spring lamb arranged with special reduction (8) Anagram of SPRING LAMB minud SP
9 SPEC
Small muscle’s detailed description (4) S + PEC
13 CLAP EYES ON
Spot large parrot definitely involved in scam (4,4,2) (L + APE + YES) inside CON
16 EDIFYING
Instructional direction provided in final (8) E(ast) + (IF inside DYING)
17 SILENCER
Report suppressor sincerely mistreated before the end (8) Anagram of (SINCEREL)Y
19 UNIDEAL
Education arrangement is not perfect (7) UNI + DEAL
21 HAILERS
Attention getters feel unwell wearing her clothes ultimately (7) (AIL inside HER) + CLOTHE(S)
22 STALES
Cargo picked up from vessel at seaport loses freshness (6) vesSEL AT Seaport reversed
23 EDIT
Check reversal of current (4) TIDE reversed
26 ACTS
Follower of John, for instance, seen outside court (4) AS outside CT

 

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One Response to The Stickler Weekly 29 Solution

  1. Greg Mansell says:

    I’m proud to say that Di and I managed to complete this one. Big thanks to Di for FURBELOW. I once played a lagerphone at school, so that was my favourite.