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Cryptic clues

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stevenw888
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Re: Cryptic clues

#461 Postby stevenw888 » May 25th, 2017, 1:48 pm

Latest post of the previous page:

You're kinda on the right lines. The first word does start with a "P".
"There are old pilots and there are bold pilots, but there are no old, bold pilots." - From the film "Top Gun"

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animist
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Re: Cryptic clues

#462 Postby animist » May 25th, 2017, 6:42 pm

stevenw888 wrote:You're kinda on the right lines. The first word does start with a "P".
Ploughman's lunch? If so, please explain the clue :D

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Re: Cryptic clues

#463 Postby stevenw888 » May 26th, 2017, 3:10 pm

Correct! Ploughmans Lunch.
the author of the book doesn't explain the reasoning behind the answer.
"There are old pilots and there are bold pilots, but there are no old, bold pilots." - From the film "Top Gun"

petemster
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Re: Cryptic clues

#464 Postby petemster » May 26th, 2017, 6:09 pm

Well done, Animist!
Like yourself I would like to know the explanation for that answer.
(I'm not as good as you maybe suggest. :-) )

Clue : You won't necessarily see anyone till after this meal. Answer : Ploughman's Lunch.

Does it just mean that after you have the answer you then 'see' someone, i.e. the Ploughman?
That seems a bit nebulous or contrived, or whatever. If anybody can see an obvious explanation
then please enlighten us.

Steven,
Going back to your original post, if that clue is your reason for not 'getting to grips' with cryptic crosswords
then I'd suggest that you have nothing to fear. Just ignore that clue.
Most clues involve simple techniques, and maybe some knowledge of well-known people, places or subjects.
If there's a technique in the above clue then it's new to me. Maybe Nick can help us out?

So, before reaching any conclusions, let's take some less abstruse clues - from today's "i" newspaper.

1a - Clever artist parted with diamonds on return (4)

12a - Singer has large boat (4)

17a Music featured regularly by sitars (Asian) (6)

20a Lake that's associated with monarch (4)

27a Saw rivals chip in violently in this? (7,5,3)

19d Listen in - hear Wigan lost some? (6)

These clues demonstrate some of the techniques used in cryptic crosswords.
If you can do these clues then you are well on the way.
If not, then we can give the answers with explanations, and then you can decide for yourself.

Cheers.

Pete M.

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animist
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Re: Cryptic clues

#465 Postby animist » May 26th, 2017, 10:30 pm

petemster wrote:Well done, Animist!
Like yourself I would like to know the explanation for that answer.
(I'm not as good as you maybe suggest. :-) )

Clue : You won't necessarily see anyone till after this meal. Answer : Ploughman's Lunch.

Does it just mean that after you have the answer you then 'see' someone, i.e. the Ploughman?
That seems a bit nebulous or contrived, or whatever. If anybody can see an obvious explanation
then please enlighten us.

Steven,
Going back to your original post, if that clue is your reason for not 'getting to grips' with cryptic crosswords
then I'd suggest that you have nothing to fear. Just ignore that clue.
Most clues involve simple techniques, and maybe some knowledge of well-known people, places or subjects.
If there's a technique in the above clue then it's new to me. Maybe Nick can help us out?

So, before reaching any conclusions, let's take some less abstruse clues - from today's "i" newspaper.

1a - Clever artist parted with diamonds on return (4)

12a - Singer has large boat (4)

17a Music featured regularly by sitars (Asian) (6)

20a Lake that's associated with monarch (4)

27a Saw rivals chip in violently in this? (7,5,3)

19d Listen in - hear Wigan lost some? (6)

These clues demonstrate some of the techniques used in cryptic crosswords.
If you can do these clues then you are well on the way.
If not, then we can give the answers with explanations, and then you can decide for yourself.

Cheers.

Pete M.
mmm, the only one of which I'm sure is the last one. Steven, crossword clues can contain anagrams, ie jumbled up words, but they also feature words whose letters are in the correct order but which are spread between more than one word - the 19d puzzle is one of these

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animist
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Re: Cryptic clues

#466 Postby animist » May 27th, 2017, 12:28 am

petemster wrote:27a Saw rivals chip in violently in this? (7,5,3)

now I've got this one! Not that easy and involves a four words anagram. You know that the total number of letters in the answer is 15, so look for four consecutive words whose letters add up to this number

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animist
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Re: Cryptic clues

#467 Postby animist » May 27th, 2017, 8:36 am

animist wrote:
petemster wrote:27a Saw rivals chip in violently in this? (7,5,3)

now I've got this one! Not that easy and involves a four words anagram. You know that the total number of letters in the answer is 15, so look for four consecutive words whose letters add up to this number
think I have got them all now, but am not totally sure why! Obviously it is harder to do them this way, as there are no completed answers to provide some of the letters!

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stevenw888
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Re: Cryptic clues

#468 Postby stevenw888 » May 30th, 2017, 9:50 am

Based on Animist's extra clue regarding 19d, 2 posts ago, I'm going to go for "EARWIG" as the answer to 19d. However I would only have got this based on the extra clue.
How is it that one knows that, from the clue, the answer is a series of letters, running concurrently in the clue?
(Sorry for delay in replying - been away for long weekend).
"There are old pilots and there are bold pilots, but there are no old, bold pilots." - From the film "Top Gun"

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Re: Cryptic clues

#469 Postby animist » May 30th, 2017, 11:14 am

stevenw888 wrote:Based on Animist's extra clue regarding 19d, 2 posts ago, I'm going to go for "EARWIG" as the answer to 19d. However I would only have got this based on the extra clue.
How is it that one knows that, from the clue, the answer is a series of letters, running concurrently in the clue?
(Sorry for delay in replying - been away for long weekend).
yes that's what I got - after some time, and I am no Xword expert. But I think, with this one, the "clue" that it was a word split between two others, rather than an anagram, relates to the proper name Wigan. Since the answer had 6 letters, Wigan could not be an anagram for it, and Wigan also sounded meaningless (since so specific a place) in the context of the clue. So instead it seemed right to look at the word along the words before and after it.

I'll take the liberty of helping a bit on the second one I got. The word "violently" suggests that the answer might be about violence or conflict, which was far as I got for some time. But "saw rivals chip in" did not make sense, and this suggested an anagram, which was confirmed by the fact the total number of letters in this phrase was the same as that in the answer. Over to you!

petemster
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Re: Cryptic clues

#470 Postby petemster » May 30th, 2017, 11:20 am

Hi, Steven.
Hope you had a great weekend. Glad you're still keen on the crossword stuff.

Yes, you're right, the answer to 19d is EARWIG.
This type of answer I think of as the "embedded solution" where the answer is a word
- as so clearly described by animist - whose letters are in the correct order but which
are spread between more than one word within in the clue.

To answer your question: The clue contains a phrase that tells you to look for an
embedded answer.
In this clue the phrase is, 'lost some.' The meaning is, 'Listen in' and the confirmation part
is, 'hear Wigan' after it has lost some letters - the outside ones.
Maybe that's not the most obvious example of an embedded answer, so here's another one
taken from yesterday's i newspaper.

21a - Name of pianist seen in England recently. (5)

A five-letter name - not someone I have heard of myself I have to admit - but Google
gives three possibilities.

If you like I can give extra hints for the other clues listed above. And maybe there are other
people who'd like to see them too. Would that be OK?

Pete.

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Re: Cryptic clues

#471 Postby animist » May 30th, 2017, 11:22 am

petemster wrote:If you like I can give extra hints for the other clues listed above. And maybe there are other
people who'd like to see them too. Would that be OK?

Pete.
OK with me, and we've been cross posting a bit! I am not 100% sure of many of the answers I came up with

petemster wrote:21a - Name of pianist seen in England recently. (5)

A five-letter name - not someone I have heard of myself I have to admit - but Google
gives three possibilities.
just guessing - is it a common French male forename?

petemster
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Re: Cryptic clues

#472 Postby petemster » May 30th, 2017, 11:43 am

Hi Animist.

Yes it is! The answer has to be - EnglANDREcently
As I said, he's not someone I know of, but he is listed by Google.

By the way, my own approach to crossword solving is to make use of my dictionary,
my Atlas, Google, family and friends, psychic octopuses and anything else handy.
I'm sure the compilers do the same.

If it's OK then, I will take each of the clues separately and explain the techniques
I use to tackle them. This might be useful to anyone new to cryptic crosswords.
I have to say, without any false modesty, that I don't consider myself to be an expert.
I do have a bit of experience, on and off, so I'm really happy to pass on any things
that I've picked up on the way.
I do realise that you have already got all the answers, animist, so forgive me if
my hints seem too basic.
Anyway . . .

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animist
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Re: Cryptic clues

#473 Postby animist » May 30th, 2017, 12:39 pm

petemster wrote:I do realise that you have already got all the answers, animist, so forgive me if
my hints seem too basic.
Anyway . . .
no, as I said, I am not sure of the others, so please divulge!

petemster
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Re: Cryptic clues

#474 Postby petemster » May 30th, 2017, 5:09 pm

.

OK. To Steven and animist, and anyone else who is interested.

As a fairly experienced non-expert I'll try to describe, with examples,
some of the techniques used in cryptic crosswords. Criticisms and additions welcome!
First I would recommend reading Nick's quick guide on Page 1 of this thread.

A "cryptic" crossword is one where the clues are coded in some way. As Nick
points out, they don't mean what they say: they try to mislead you.
Apart from anagrams and 'embedded' answers, cryptic clues (as Nick also says)
have two parts: the 'meaning' and the confirmation - the 'working out' part.
It's really useful to know that the meaning part is (mostly) found at the beginning
of the clue or (less often) at the end of the clue.
Code words and abbreviations are a big part of cryptic crosswords.
So is general knowledge. So it's fairly obvious that experience is the way to
get better at them.
BTW, I don't believe that doing crosswords prevents dementia or memory loss.
Doing them regularly makes you better at doing crosswords - and you learn things.
You can still forget things, but you won't forget the techniques that you learn

I'd like to look at the clues I listed in the earlier post #464, but I'll take them one at
a time - so we can all get on with other things too. ;-)

Pete M.

petemster
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Re: Cryptic clues

#475 Postby petemster » May 30th, 2017, 6:35 pm

The first of our clues was :

1a - Clever artist parted with diamonds on return (4)

This short clue demonstrates 4 elements of cryptic clues - Position of the 'meaning',
the need for some general knowledge, and two coded techniques.

1. Position of the 'meaning' is at the beginning - so the answer is a word meaning, "clever"
and the rest of it is the 'working out'.
2. General knowledge. We're looking for an artist with 5 letters in his name, because we have to . .
3. Drop the letter "D" from his name - coded technique, "parted with diamonds" - the 'd' being
the abbreviation in playing-card nomenclature for the suit,"diamonds".
4. Then we turn the word back-to-front - coded technique, "on return".

Which gives us a 4-letter word meaning "clever" - in a wise sort of way. Which is : - - - -

I hope I haven't made that unnecessarily convoluted.

petemster
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Re: Cryptic clues

#476 Postby petemster » May 30th, 2017, 8:39 pm

Our second clue was :

12a - Singer has large boat (4)

So first look for the 'meaning', and right enough, it's at the beginning.
We're looking for a 'singer'. But, watch out. It's misleading.

So lets check the 'working-out'.
First word to notice is 'large'. This gives us the letter 'l' - as in S,M,L,XL clothes labels.
Now we want a 3-letter word for a boat.
Sometimes it's as well to remember that the typical crossword compiler in the past
was a minister - and traces of that tradition still remain - so we are looking for a
3-letter boat from the Bible - to put it behind the letter 'L'.

So the answer is : L - - -

which is a well-loved 'singer'.

petemster
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Re: Cryptic clues

#477 Postby petemster » May 31st, 2017, 12:16 pm

The third clue is :

17a - Music featured regularly by sitars (Asian) (6)

And once again the 'meaning' is the first word - Music.

The technique here is indicated by 'featured regularly' which is code for
'take every other letter' - in this case starting with the first letter "s" in 'sitarsasian'.

Which gives us : S - - - - -

petemster
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Re: Cryptic clues

#478 Postby petemster » May 31st, 2017, 12:31 pm

Fourth clue is :

20a - Lake that's associated with monarch (4)

Here again the meaning is the first word, so it's the name of a lake, with four letters.

The monarch is the present queen which gives us - ER
which is associated with "that's" - meaning "that is", which gives us "id est" or "i.e."

Which gives the answer - Lake Erie

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Re: Cryptic clues

#479 Postby animist » May 31st, 2017, 1:26 pm

petemster wrote:Fourth clue is :

20a - Lake that's associated with monarch (4)

Here again the meaning is the first word, so it's the name of a lake, with four letters.

The monarch is the present queen which gives us - ER
which is associated with "that's" - meaning "that is", which gives us "id est" or "i.e."

Which gives the answer - Lake Erie
jeez, I was actually right on that one! But dead wrong on the others above, and I'm still working on just WHY I was wrong. Petem, if there is no obscure word for crossword puzzle, you should invent one!

petemster
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Re: Cryptic clues

#480 Postby petemster » May 31st, 2017, 2:24 pm

Hi animist.

It seems there already is a word : cruciverbalism.
It means the compilation or construction of crosswords.

I can't find a word for the de-struction of crosswords.

petemster
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Re: Cryptic clues

#481 Postby petemster » May 31st, 2017, 2:53 pm

The fifth clue is :

27a - Saw rivals chip in violently in this? (7,5,3)

You've already pretty much covered this one, animist. It's an anagram.

In Nick's quick guide he says that words like, "mixed, muddled, troubled, etc." are likely
to indicate an anagram.
In our clue it's the word "violently" that jumps out at you and is code for, "look for the
anagram!"
As you say, there are 15 letters in the answer, so the anagram comprises the 15 letters
of, "Saw rivals chip in".
And when these letters are shoogled up they give us an event of great violence -
such as a war.
Not too difficult for you and me, Animist, but someone younger might struggle with
this one! ;-)


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