Mephisto 2454/Chris Feetenby

Posted on Categories Mephisto

Solving time: 35:16

Finally got to solve the correct puzzle!  PB tried to shoulder the blame, but I am sure that it was me misreading the puzzle number on our Google calendar.  So apologies for the delay…

A typical Chris Feetenby puzzle.  Not too difficult, and most unusual or obscure answers are made easier by friendly wordplay.  Also, a few liberties taken!  For example, a homophone to be executed on a clue before solving (17A), “down” used as an anagram indicator (30A), and LILLIAN equals GISH (5D).

Most of the puzzle was completed without Chambers, thanks to that helpful wordplay, just got stuck on six or seven in the left hand side of the grid, mainly due to my lack of knowledge of words beginning PHTH!



HOROLOGICAL (HORa + O + LOG + I CAL) – I first thought that the R was not being indicated, expecting HOP to be the dance, but instead I learnt a new one, HORA.


UNHELE (HEL in UNE) – this Spenserian form was guessable from the more common wordplay.


IMPINGE (IMP + INGE) – William Inge, who was known as the Gloomy Dean.


RETROS (SORTER rev.) – this was one of last to go in, mainly because I do not expect to find homophones being performed within the clue itself!  “Male worker reportedly” has to be read as “mail worker” for solving to be carried out.


INDABA (I + BAD + NI rev.) – again the wordplay helps us find a Zulu word – though devoted scouts might be familiar with it.


CHILL (C + HILL) – i.e. if temperature goes up, CHILL will go.


SAKERET (SAKE + RET) – there seem to be a lot of words for “falcon”.  Although RET was easy to spot, it took a while for me to think of SAKE for “advantage”.


ARRIVEDERCI (ARRIVED + CRIED*) – it’s always nice when the wordplay nails the spelling of a word that I might otherwise struggle with!


CLYTEMNESTRA (LET ANCESTRY* + M) – these days I tend to refer to the latest edition of  Chambers Crossword Dictionary, which has some useful lists of “indicator” words for clues – now I know it’s not the Gospel but “down” is not in the anagram indicator list.










PHTHIRIASIS (AIR* in PHTHISIS) – not easy to get unless you knew one of the PHTH words.


ERUDITE (UDI + T in ERE) – this was Smith’s declaration.


GOATISH (OAT I GISH) – although Lillian did lead me fairly easily to Gish, I would rather a “perhaps” or “maybe” used to indicate that Gish is an example of a “Lillian”.


NINEPIN (NINE + PIN) – Chambers does define (the) Nine as “the Muses”.




HEMERALOPIA (AMPHORAE LIE*) – it is always fun to use your existing etymological knowledge to try and work out an unfamiliar word when anagram fodder is given.  Similarly for the next clue to OLECRANAL.


MINT-MEN – surely one of the most famous of sweets?


TAIVERT (TAI + VERT) – VERT being short for “convert”, especially to Roman Catholicism.


SHEART (SHE + ART) – Tracey Emin is a SHE, alledgedly.










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