Mephisto 3185 – Tim Moorey

Greetings barred-grid fans

I thought this one was a notch up in difficulty from the usual Tim Moorey puzzles, and I had a bunch of scribble around my grid, though only a few question marks. There’s some tricky wordplay, particularly in letter substitutions.

In Mephisto puzzles, definitions (the most direct of which is underlined) can be confirmed in Chambers, so I will focus on wordplay here.

Away we go…

1 Official in struggle for small plant (7)
TREFOIL – REF(official) inside TOIL(struggle)
7 Ace bowler perhaps brought back for South African flier (4)
TAHA – A(ace) and HAT(bowler, perhaps) all reversed
10 Railway special involving diversion for some (9)
FUNICULAR – PARTICULAR(special) with FUN(diversion) replacing PART(some). A term emblazoned in my mind after multple viewings of The Grand Budapest Hotel
11 One month to get a measure of Sky (4)
OCTA – OCT(October, one month), A
13 Rowing movement ending in hullabaloo and absolute fury (6)
OARAGE – last letter in hullabaloO, A(absolute), RAGE(fury)
14 Eagle seen in ground briefly on a swamp (7)
LERNEAN – ERNE(eagle) inside LAND(ground) missing the last letter
16 Scottish lover long forgotten by Indian head (4)
MAIK – remove L(long) from MALIK(head of a village in India)
18 Girl, 50 gets entry for a year (5)
ANNAL – ANNA(girl) and L(50)
19 Will’s share is a large draw (9)
21 Boiler has to be put out? Extinguisher needed (9)
24 Hour with a German poet (5)
HEINE – H(hour) and EINE(a, in German)
25 Bird in shed is a blackbird (4)
MERL – MERLIN(bird) minus IN
27 What would be misplaced as Germany, east coast? Worms (7)
CESTODA – anagram of D(Germany), E, COAST
29 Handle ordered from Athens (6)
SNEATH – anagram of ATHENS
30 Magistrate has space for writing device (4)
J-PEN – JP(Justice of the Peace, magistrate), then EN(space)
31 Cheers much reduced parking in the end (9)
TOODLE-PIP – OODLES(much) missing the last letter and P(parking) inside TIP(the end)
32 Beginning short of energy once (4)
ONST – ONSET(beginning) minus E(energy)
33 Inferior leader of orchestra getting duet’s lower part (7)
SECONDO – SECOND(inferior) and the first letter of Orchestra
1 Loony mate ignoring tips at work — he’s associated with many a vice (7)
TOOLMAN – anagram of LOONy and MATe
2 Run one, or two if start’s recalled (4)
RACE – odd clue, as I think there are two wordplays – R(run), ACE(one) and BRACE(two) missing the first letter
3 Weaver from Portuguese resort cheated, nothing less (9)
ESTRILDID – the resort is ESTORIL, remove the O(nothing), then DID(cheated)
4 Thoroughly upset stuff in contest? (6)
OUTEAT – OUT(thoroughly), EAT(upset)
5 Heraldic beasts painted in cellulose, not for all to see (10)
LIONCELLES – anagram of IN,CELLULOSE minus U(for all to see)
6 Having no direction, senior nurses caught sadly short (6)
SCALAR – SR(senior) containing C(caught) and ALAS(sadly) missing the last letter. No direction mathematically
7 Expression heard for body of soldiers years ago (4)
TURM – sounds like TERM(expression)
8 Have teg finally, thanks to a shepherd’s club (8)
HAG-TAPER – HA(have), the last letter of teG, TA(thanks), next to PER(a)
9 One old coin associated with a quarter (5)
AREAL –  A(one), REAL(old coin)
12 Minor motoring brushes can lead to combustible cases (10)
CARTOUCHES – minor motoring touches would be CAR TOUCHES
15 Party member overseeing golf tournament made public (9, three words)
IN THE OPEN – IN(party member) over THE OPEN(golf tournament)
17 Wilde’s bachelor, large libertine with no end of invention (8)
ALGERNON – anagram of LARGE, then NO and the last letter of inventioN – Algy from The Importance of Being Earnest
20 Lorna Doone novel one’s left in US city (7)
ORLANDO – anagram of LORNA,DOONE minus ONE
22 German vehicle project (6)
BEETLE – double definition
23 Like ancient Greek music, sparkling stuff fills one part of concert (6)
IASTIC – ASTI(sparkling stuff) inside I(one) and the first letter of Concert
24 Must stop eating nuts when short of money (5, two words)
HAS TO – HO(direction to stop) containing MAST(nuts) missing M(money)
26 With weak acting, Director’s beginning to try black lead (4)
WADT – W(weak), A(acting), D(director) and the first letter of Try
28 Duncan’s end: heartlessly cut up (4)
DEID – DICED(cut) missing the middle letter, reversed.

2 comments on “Mephisto 3185 – Tim Moorey”

  1. Horses for courses. It does seem to be difficult to pin down the level of difficulty of barred puzzles. Waltzed through most of this, got seriously bogged down in the NW, stopped and came back to it an hour later, and polished it off in jig time. So next week, when everyone else is saying how easy it was, I expect to be taking a couple of hours.

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