Azed No 2096 (5 Aug 2012)

reviewed by Dr Watson for & lit. – The Azed Slip Archive

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R WATSON found this to be a very easy puzzle to solve with no hidden traps. The high proportion of cryptic or whimsical definitions gave great pleasure. Watson particularly enjoyed clues for IDAEAN, TRIST, PIKEMAN, REMADE, RAISED PASTRY and GUERNSEY LILY. The three composite anagrams, clueing LAICISE, NEUME and DOURA, may have been helpful to a few competitors in trying to master an indication for TRICK.

Notes to the clues:


1.       Falsifies triplet with note for one such. FIDDLE-STRING (fiddles + trin + G; s.v. trine) That ‘note’ just had to be G, the pitch of the lowest open string on a violin.

10.     Naiad upset about ‘second’ for Hera, re judgement of Paris? IDAEAN (e in anag.)  Idaean is defined in Chambers as ‘of Mount Ida in Crete, or that near Troy’, the latter being the site where Paris had the thankless task of judging the beauty of three goddesses. One of them, Hera, was particularly miffed at being overlooked. However, she was certainly no mere naiad but the wife and sister of Zeus himself. Doubtless she had one or two naiads amongst her fans, Idaea possibly being one of them.

13.     Running race is ideal? So open to non-professionals, dear. LAICISE (comp. anag., s.v. lay3)  The first of three composite anagrams in this puzzle in which ‘race is ideal’ is found to be an anagram of LAICISE plus ‘dear’, with the definition given as ‘open to non-professionals’. Each anagram is indicated separately, the first by ‘running’, and the second by reference back, using ‘so’.

17.     Label bed to be brought back for old foot soldier. PIKEMAN (name + kip, all rev.)  The surface evokes the days when articles were packaged for the long sea voyage home from empire postings.

24.     Blowing kiss king’s mistress turned in after a change of sheets? REMADE (dame (rev.) in re(x))  The phrase: ‘king’s mistress turned in’ is understood as meaning ‘king has mistress turned in’ in the indication.

28.     Roller dispersing fellow’s waste on board whaler? GURRY (RR in guy)  Chambers has an entry for Rolls-Royce which includes the informal ‘Rolls’ and ‘Roller’, but does not mention the famous logo at its entry for RR.

29.     Pilgrim, one following god (not his) from the east. HAJI (Jah (rev.) + 1; s.v. hadj) Dr Watson is not sure that the phrase ‘not his’ makes a great deal of sense in the surface reading. Surely any pilgrim will be mindful of his own god, and not that of another faith. In the cryptic reading ‘god’ (not Allah) is Jehovah, that of the Hebrews.

30.     Okra merging with what it’s fried in? It’s painful in the mouth. GUMBOIL (gumbo, oil (‘merged’))  The given indication may be understood well enough once the solution is known, but seems imprecise. Don’t try this at home.

33.     Long par with this pitch mark could make a lump on green. NEUME (comp. anag.)  We find here that ‘long par’ plus NEUME (‘this pitch mark’) is an anagram of ‘a lump on green’. In this case, Azed has departed from his stricture (to competitors) that both parts of a composite anagram should be indicated separately. Instead, and perhaps to provide solvers with something of a change, he has chosen to indicate that the letters of the first could be rearranged as those of the second. As in the clue for LAICISE at 13 Across, the solution is defined internally and not by the wh ole clue.

35.     No support for this quiche? Nasty party asides about recipe. RAISED PASTRY (r in anag.)  A brilliantly witty clue about a quiche made without benefit of a sided dish. Dr Watson’s favourite in this puzzle.


1.       Theatre critic often, one struggling to take in half of Strindberg’s concoction. FIRST-NIGHTER (anag. of Strin(dberg) in fighter)  Azed is careful to distinguish the professional critic from other first-nighters by use of ‘often’ and by this means to give a definition by example.

3.       Old shilling, not nearly new, fetching high price. DEAR (deaner less ne(w))  Quite a few regular solvers will have been reminded of the clue for DEARN in the very last Azed, no 2095 at 28 Down. Quickly solved by Watson.

4.       One game in Scotland in which there’s very little between the two sides? LAMITER (i.e. ‘a mite’ in l(eft), r(ight); s.v. lameter)  Game2 is cleverly disguised in a surface all about sport.

7.       I produce something like cork and relock bottled end of jeroboam. ROCK ELM (anag. + m)  Solvers may read about the Rock Elm here.

8.       Cubic mineral not brought in by the tide? On the contrary. NOSEAN (sea in non, i.e. not non in sea)  Clues in this form are frequently included in Azed puzzles. The present example begs the question whether some cubic minerals may be borne in or by a running sea (sailor talk for the tide). There’s plenty of reading about crystals at this link.

9.       One’s surely lying badly about tip of blue in this scarlet flower. GUERNSEY LILY (e in anag.)  Regular solvers will be familiar with Azed’s use of ‘One’s’ to disguise a definition in the surface reading. Here he has used the device to disguise the anagram of ‘surely lying’ in this witty clue.

11.     Best may be involved in turning breads out. DOURA (comp. anag., &lit; s.v. durra)  The third of this puzzle’s composite anagrams features the device of indicating by means of a dash where the solution might be placed so that the whole clue reads as a definition. ‘Best doura’ is then found to be an anagram of ‘breads out’.

21.     For Jews it’s symbolic, sticking flower in cap. HAROSET (rose in hat)  Dr Watson has not managed to find any Jewish custom, either cultural or religious, of setting flowers in hats.

23.     Anzac swapping units (front and rear) given equipment. RIGGED (digger, ‘d’, ‘r’ swapped)  Finally the return of a perennial pair of synonyms for an Australian or New Zealand soldier.


Other solutions:

Across:  12. PROSO (pro + so)  14. SUCRIER (anag.) 15. KIER (e in kir) 16. TRIST ((me)trist; s.v. metre2) 18. NAEVES (a in seven (rev.)) 26. GRIGRIS (rig in gris; s.v. grisgris & gris1) .32. TENTIGO (tent + I + go) 34. UNREEL (anag. + eel)   

Down:    2. DARCIES (anag., s.v. darcy) 5. SPARID (sp + arid) 6. TRICK (the competition word) 19. VAGITUS (anag. in vas) 20. TEGMINA (get (rev.) + I in anag.) 22. FRAENA (a + near + f, all rev.) 25. DRICE (anag.) 27. RHIME (him in R.E.) 31. BARS (2 meanings)


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