Mephisto 2658 by Don Manley

Posted on Categories Mephisto
A puzzle by Don Manley, the first by anybody other than Paul McKenna and Tim Moorey since Mike Laws died. I don’t know if this is a permanent arrangement or simply a guest appearance. In any event Don is not unknown to us and this is an easy puzzle which should have given regular solvers no problems and a relatively quick solve.

1 ASHTANGA – A-SH-TANG(o)-A; system of yoga devised by K Pattabhi Jois;
10 DHOW – (boatyar)D-HOW;
11 UPAS-TREE – (pate sure)*; its poison sap is used to tip arrows;
12 ZENIST – ZE(IN reversed)ST;
14 DEARN – DEAR-N; knight=N (chess); dern-2=DEARN=secret;
15 ALTERNE – AL(TERN)E; a plant community (herbacious rather than a group of factories);
16 STREEL – STREE(t)-L; lough=L; a warder in Waterford;
17 OLLAV – O-L-LAV; John=toilet (slang); a streel’s know-all crony;
19 CRASSLY – CR(ASSL)Y; ASSL=LASS with “L” moved;
23 ASCITES – AS(CITE)S; dropsy;
24 INDRA – INDIA becomes INDRA when I=one becomes R=river;
25 CO-MATE – CO(MA)TE; a companion;
30 DEMIT – D-E-MIT; low (exam) grades=D and E; MIT=Massachusetts Institute of Technology; send down;
31 CANOES – (as once)*;
33 ANAN – NANA reversed; dialect for “wha’cha say mate?”;
34 TELESEME – TELE-SE(M)E; box=TV=TELE; motorway=M; signalling equipment;
1 ADZE – A-D(a)ZE; a=(l)A(ncs); a cutting tool;
3 TWITE – T(W)IT-E; W=W(orm);
4 AUSLESE – A-US(LES)E; the French=LES; late harvest, riper, grapes and thus wine in contrast to earlier Spatlese wine;
6 STEELE – STEEL(y)-E; E=(th)E;
7 ARAR – AR-AR; AR=R=(su)RR(ey); a Juniper tree;
8 BERNADETTE – (neer bad)*-TT-E; Man=Isle of Man; E=(lif)E; first to claim sight of Our Lady of Lourdes;
9 GENEVESE – GE(SEVEN reversed)E; from Swiss Genevan (not to be confused with Genovese family of NY);
13 ESTRANGELO – E(STRANGE)LO; ELO=Electric Light Orchestra (pop group – not supported by Chambers); Syriac alphabet;
16 SCHIEDAM – S-CH-IE-DAM; City in Holland where they produce jenever gin;
18 LET,ALONE – LET(h)AL-ONE; hospital=H;
21 SCOPATE – SC-O-PATE; namely=SC; round=O; from scopa – tufts of hair that are the bee’s knees, one might say;
22 ARLING – (d)ARLING; daughter=D;
26 MONAS – MON(A)S; are=A; battle of MONS; first battle of WW1 involving UK troops, August 1914 – over 6,000 men killed in total;
28 AMLA – ALMA reversed;
29 ESNE – ESN-E; needing special help to learn=ESN=educationally subnormal; English=E;

6 comments on “Mephisto 2658 by Don Manley”

  1. Hello Jack and welcome to the parallel universe of Mephisto

    Here the content of Chambers is law and in our bible it sayeth UPAS-TREE (make sure you consult the latest version). The convention is that hyphenated words such as this are shown as (8) with no indication of hyphenation (see also 25A CO-MATE shown as (6))

    Like fine wine Mephisto is an acquired taste that takes time and application to really enjoy. This wasn’t a particularly inspiring puzzle being somewhat workman like. Today’s is a little harder but I think a bit more entertaining.

    If George or I can help in any way please don’t hesitate to ask

    1. Thanks, Jim.

      There’s a new Chambers due out this month, I see. 12th edition @ £25.60 on Amazon. It’s a good discount on the RRP but I’m not sure I can justify the expense at the moment having just updated my Collins. Maybe the price will come down even further in a month or two.

      1. At the end of the script that appears under the puzzle it tells you what version of C the setter is using. Because there’s a lag time between the new dictionary being published and the first crossword set using it appearing you don’t need to update for a while yet.

        Dear old Ximenes used to use that lag time to search out quirks and misprints and then include reference to them in an early puzzle. That doesn’t go on these days – thank goodness some would say!

  2. A rare excursion into Mephistoland for me and having battled through it over several days with extensive use of aids I’m not pleased to find that this was considered an easy one. I didn’t really get much enjoyment out of it.

    According to everywhere I have looked UPAS TREE is two words and whilst I understand it would not be enumerated 4,4 I wondered why it’s not indicated (8, two words) as 18dn is?

  3. I’ll agree with Jimbo – a gentle debut for Don Manley, did this in the departure lounge at Heathrow using only Bradfords. The clueing was all very good I thought, I particlarly liked the clues for BERNADETTE and ARAR.

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