Crossword 803 answers and explanations

by David Tossman / 12 January, 2013
Hard words
Crossword 803 solution

In hindsight, I suspect that this puzzle was a little harder than usual. I aim to produce a puzzle that does not require the solver to have recourse to the dictionary. That takes some guesswork on my part about the extent of my supposed typical solver's vocabulary. Sometimes, of course, I might guess wrong, particularly if the grid is proving difficult to fill. With that I might become a little optimistic about that mythical average solver's vocabulary.

It seems I fell thus to temptation a little here, particularly with 30 across and 3 down, and perhaps with 21 down.

The clue for 30 across is a bit of a stinker, while PLEONASM (3 down) might fairly be regarded as a hard word, better suited to my friend Kropotkin's puzzle in the NZ Herald.

Drift for TENOR (21 down) , as in “the tenor of the conversation,” is hardly likely to come immediately to mind either. What's more, I used the legitimate but rare (in my puzzles) ambiguous apostrophe device. It appears to be a possessive in the surface reading while “really” being an omission marker. In other words the “proper” reading would be “Pavarotti is”.

I do sometimes envy the setters of harder puzzles who can freely use the farther reaches of the dictionary and more complex clue devices. They seem to have it easier on the grid building front for a start. Hard puzzles, I reckon, make easy setting, hence my temptation.

 Across Answers and CluesExplanations
He's sinful, drunk and public-spirited (9)Anagram of HE SINFUL
Auckland City Council (regional authority) leaders form another city (5)Auckland City Council = ACC + regional authority = RA
It is decided from first principles that the head of a religious order goes in first class (1,6)the head of a religious order = PRIOR inside first class = AI
A funny sort, quite peculiar, makes the pulpit (7)Anagram of SORT + quite peculiar = RUM
A volcano given to roaring disconcertingly (9)Anagram of TO ROARING
Hood used for the most part in robing (5)reference to Robin Hood, most of ROBINg
Can opener, age 1099, made of clay (7)Can opener = C, age = ERA, 1099 = MIC (Roman numerals)
Knocked it back initially, however Zionist leader forms a collective farm (7)Knocked it back initially (acrostic indicator) = KIB, however = BUT + Zionist leader = Z
Put a protective covering on the bed, a lot around student (5)a lot = MUCH, student = L (learner)
The attitude of half a dozen top wine characters (9)half a dozen = VI + anagram of TOP WINE
Yorkshire pudding mixture left inside for a poor paid worker (7)Yorkshire pudding mixture = BATTER including left = L
Copper with heavenly body developed first sweet sauce (7)Copper = CU, heavenly body = STAR, developed first = D
Stick or club (5)Double definition
A large printed picture with Spanish river in it at the bottom (9)large printed picture = POSTER including Spanish river = RIO.
 Down Answers and CluesExplanations
Mystical radiance found in a restaurant (4)Hidden word rest AURA nt
An opportunist who consumes narcotics (4)Double definition
One psalm composed using more words than necessary (8)Anagram of ONE PSALM
Riding a cycle mostly, one shows a revealing little outfit (6)Riding a cycle = BIKIN/g + one = I, 5/23 Anagram of MORE SHOCKS HELL
/23 More shocks? Hell, that's a mess for the old investigator (8,6)
Nasty scare about a bygone rulerAnagram of SCARE including A
Install cash machine in bar to be a superhero (6)cash machine = ATM inside bar = BAN
Vehicle � one � half the bounty for a reindeer in the US (7)Vehicle = CAR, one = I, half the bounty = BOU
Party leader put on ceremonial garment to conduct an investigation (5)Party leader = P, ceremonial garment = ROBE
Gave an account of kin (7)Double definition
Walls of silence find backing in some less-pure vocabularies (5-3)Hidden word backwards, les SPUREVOC abularies
How you advance following examinations for coronary operations (8)Double definition
Pavarotti's "The Drift" (5)Double definition
The telephone could make me boil (6)Anagram of ME BOIL
See 5
Cut out indirect tax (6)Double definition
A large area of land but just a small part of it as far as I am concerned (4)Hidden word, as far AS I A m concerned
Bother to fix a hole in one's hose (4)Double definition.
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