Mephisto 3246 – Prince turns over in his grave!

I didn’t find this too bad, and finished fairly quickly.    I did biff quite a few, and researched them either while solving or when I came to write the blog.   I seem to be better at getting the obscure ones than answers like order around and desert, but that is the whole idea of Mephisto – the solver is expecting something obscure, and when the setter offers a common word with an ordinary cryptic, it is sometimes not as obvious as you might expect.     Answers like enneagram, matai, and epanadiplosis, on the other hand, were readily guessable from the cryptics and required only a quick check.

So how did you do?



1 Fish with tip of rod behind middle of these (6)
WRASSE – W + R[od] + ASS + [th]E[se].
6 Cap that may be felt to improve, as some say, split by Right (5)
BERET – BE(R)ET.  Beet or bete – to improve.
10 Pull up a lieutenant beside hospital (4)
HALT – H + A LT, a starter clue.
11 Impressive and boundless principle for such as teacher, say (7)
EPICENE – EPIC + [t]ENE[t], where the literal merely means that -er is a sex-neutral agent suffix.
12 Boss to beg booze? (11, two words)
13 By the way, that’s Nero’s high priest showing marks of corruption? (5)
OBELI – OB. + ELI, where that’s Nero’s goes with the abbreviation of obiter.   These are the little daggers put around a corrupted passage in a classical text.
14 Kelly, say, following return of chaps called once (6)
NEMNED – MEN backwards + NED for a Spenserian word.
16 Dull adjective, one identifying conifer (5)
MATAI – MAT + A + I.
17 Powdered egg’s first found in small measure (6)
SEMEED – S  (E[gg]) MEED.  Semé is usually found in heraldry.
19 Radios streaming stations with intros from rock ’n’ roll singers (11)
TRANSISTORS –  Anagram of STATIONS + R[ock’n’]R[oll] S[ingers].
22 Positive advantage by one who scolds rambling hack? (6)
25 A grass mostly pains (5)
ACHES – A + CHES[s], the grass not the game – or the plank!
27 Shipping line absorbing reserve fund very quickly (6)
PRESTO – P(RES)TO.   Product transfer order, I believe.
28 I am about to wing it? (5)
IMAGO – I’M + A + GO, an &lit.
29 Mollusc being served up appears with oil, right? (11)
30 Board of National Trust shackled by European shower (7)
31 Mick Dundee’s mug is cut immediately, no good (4)
NONG – NO[w] + N.G., a mug in the sense of a fool.
32 Indian peasants turned sport into rupees (5)
RYOTS – R(TOY backwards)S, where toy is a verb.
33 Is unit to astound no longer? (6)
1 What person tops other people’s cheers? (6)
2 Fly vassal becomes head of guild (8)
ALDERMAN – ALDER + MAN.   Yes, there is an alder that is a fly-fishing lure.
3 Tablets consuming least energy (6)
STELAE – Anagram of LEAST E.
4 Something like Times New Roman fuels upset (5)
SERIF –  FIRES backwards.
5 English slate a decline — forgotten praise is a figure of speech (13)
EPANADIPLOSIS – E PAN A DIP + LOS IS.   One of thousands of figures cataloged by ancient rhetoricians with nothing better to do.
6 Corps fortifying rare kinship that’s lifted galleys (7)
BIREMES – Our friends the R.E.M.E. inside SIB upside down.
7 Energy to get round parent gives a view of our relationships (6)
8 Remarkably germane, an image used by psychologists (9)
9 It causes whirling effects for lingerie (7)
15 Beautiful being rattled carny’s skull once (9)
PERICRANY – PERI + anagram of CARNY.
18 Talk at length about northern river — standard for Italians (8)
GONFALON – GO(N FAL) ON.   The Fal, of course is a southern river.
19 Interest being written up on a voyageur (7)
TRAPPER – PART upside-down on PER.
20 Baldrick, worthless sort, doing without any hard sacred writings (7)
SASTRAS – SAS[h], TRAS[h], a very clever cryptic indeed.
21 Due leave in a place of solitude (6)
DESERT – Triple definition.
23 Put on coat from the east — a silky black garment (6)
DOMINO – DO + MINO, a Japanese coat.
24 Autopilot’s what gets erk going among stuff (6)
26 Laughing I’ll get into bombast (5)

6 comments on “Mephisto 3246 – Prince turns over in his grave!”

  1. I usually only do the daily cryptic with maybe a quick look at the Mephisto but found this one quite approachable so persevered. I was very pleased to finish it and submit. I agree about Order around. It took ages to realise it was quite simple! Thank you for the blog Vinyl1. I hadn’t understood the ob of obeli.

  2. Just over an hour for me, which is about 1/2 hour less than Paul’s Mephistos usually take me. After getting 1A straight away I saw the RASPBERRY pun immediately too and after HALT I was up and running. By the way I parsed 27A differently as REST (reserve fund) in P and O (shipping line), which I thought was clever. I liked SASTRAS and the triple DESERT too. Thanks Paul and vinyl.

  3. Fun puzzle, I also like it when the grid size gets switched up a bit (11×13 here instead of the usual 12×12)

Comments are closed.