Mephisto 3199 – Don Manley

Greeting barred-grid fans,

I was caught a little short – I was not expecting to blog this until next week, but as it has just passed into Boxing Day in the UK, and the cricket is starting in my hometown of Melbourne, I see that Mephisto 3200 has been published and the solution to 3199 is available on the site. So here we go.

When I saw the letters of BIRTH appearing in the second row I thought there might have been a hidden message, but I suspect it might have been a left over from trying to fit a different grid pattern.  As always, Don Manley has given us creative and clear wordplay for difficult words, so a fun solve.

With Mephisto puzzles, definitions can be confirmed in Chambers, so I will focus on wordplay here.

Away we go…

1 Maybe a Glaswegian’s clothes items (6)
ASCOTS – A, SCOT’S(Glaswegian’s)
6 Form of response included by communists making new offers (6)
REBIDS – BI(a response in Chinese medicine) inside REDS(communists)
10 System of belief of those people gathering round second-year student (9)
THEOSOPHY – THEY(those people) containing O(round), SOPH(second-year student)
11 Bleats of leader in South Africa (4)
BAAS – double definition
12 Thus small Roman community managed with very old ruler (6)
SOVRAN – I may be missing something here, since i can see SO(thus), RAN(managed) and V(very), not sure what the small Roman community contributes.  Read the comments for what I missed – the V is Vatican City and “very” is part of the definition.
13 Be slow moving joints (6)
ELBOWS – anagram of BE,SLOW
14 Bear without tail seen in copse (4)
CARR – CARRY(bear) missing the last letter
16 Rock event is on in new format (9)
18 Rascal not getting married, one to run away (5)
SCAPA – SCAMP(rascal) minus M(married) then A(one)
24 The Parisian unwell, about to avoid that surgical procedure (5)
LASIK – LA(the in French), then SICK(unwell) missing C(about)
27 Trained paramedic appearing before man in garden? (9)
28 Part of ruler’s territory at one time (4)
ERST – hidden inside rulER’S Territory
29 Long to eat nut and dry fruit (6)
ACHENE – ACHE(long) containing EN(nut)
30 Old brass pillar with X on (6)
LATTEN – LAT(an Indian pillar) then TEN(X)
31 Poisonous plant mostly seen in river (4)
URAL – URALI(poisonous plant) missing the last letter
32 This writer’s left with a French female creating torment (9)
IMPORTUNE – I’M(this writer’s), PORT(left) and UNE(french female form of “a”)
33 Like crystal box rarely empty (6)
SPARRY – SPAR(box) and the outer letters of RarelY
34 Like poetry that’s encountered, set in good order (6)
METRED – MET(encountered), RED(set in good order)
1 A British Queen deemed good person for keeping order? (6)
ABBESS – A, B(British) and good queen BESS
2 Form of silica in earth’s crust (6)
SIALIC – anagram of SILICA – found in Chambers under SIAL
3 Little credit given to a cruel schoolteacher (“Fish”) (9)
CRAB-EATER – CR(credit) and BEATER(a cruel schoolteacher, though I don’t think we are allowed to hit students anymore, tempting though it is)
4 Manner with which dale changes in region of southern England (8, two words)
THE WEALD – THEW(manner) and an anagram of DALE
5 Snake is showing evidence of harmful bacteria (6)
SEPSIS – SEPS(snake), IS
6 Sort of sticky boy admitting transgression (6)
ROSINY – ROY(boy) containing SIN(transgression)
7 Area of land no longer British, egg-shaped (6)
BOVATE – B(British) and OVATE(egg-shaped). If you have not yet, you should read the definition of OXGANG in Chambers to learn about BOVATE
8 Demand for justice is religious virtue, any number coming in for mass (6)
DHARNA – DHARMA(religiou virtue) with N(any number) replacing M(mass)
9 Cleaner transforming den (“sty”) (6)
SYNDET – anagram of DEN,STY
15 Errors yet to be put right by this unruly type (9)
17 Combination of nice oils that may enhance the breast (8)
19 Abnormal pulse — one admitted medical problem (6)
EPULIS – anagram of PULSE containing I(one)
20 Electronic device with double power stuffed with lots of paper (6)
PRE-AMP – P and P (double power) containing REAM(lot of paper)
21 Good old Aussie star (6)
CASTOR – double definition, though I don’t think I’ve heard the first one
22 Very short relation being boastful (6)
VAUNTY – V(very) and AUNTY(relation)
23 Old mother with problem in stomach (6)
OMASUM – O(old), MA(mother) and SUM(problem)
25 Natural troublemaker undermining place of hospitality (6)
INNATE – ATE(troublemaker) under INN(place of hospitality)
26 On outside of fish insect turned up (6)
KEELED – EEL(fish) inside KED(insect)

3 comments on “Mephisto 3199 – Don Manley”

  1. I found this very straightforward for a Mephisto: done in under half an hour.
    In 12ac the ‘small Roman community’ is the Vatican City, V.
  2. My Mephisto solving typically involves a few sessions before knocking off the last 10% or so with Chambers. So having finished this without aids in about 30 minutes I thought it was likely on the easy side, which keriothe and Phil have confirmed. Good puzzle though, and worth it for PREADAMIC alone!

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