02.27.11 — In a Manner of Speaking... — the Cryptic

Colin Firth in the film The King’s Speech


Sunday, February 27, 2011

Cryptic Crossword by Brian Greer, edited by Will Shortz

If one is inclined to garner trivia in the world of cinema awards, that knowledge may or may not be of help in the solution of this more-alien-than-cryptic puzzle seemingly contrived to be so obscure as to ignore all logic of which it appears there is no limit.

Across — 7. Damage produced by river getting into shack (4), HURT; 8. Old chess champion exchanging pawn for second in this African city (10), CASABLANCA; (11. Repaired ancestral royal house in England (9), LANCASTER; 12. In which cars disastrously hit! (5), CRASH; 13. It ain’t awfully compact, to begin with - it’s colossal (7), TITANIC; 15. Republication in charge many diminished as liberated type (7), FREEMAN; 16. [What all the other Across answers have in common]; (7,6); 19. Philosophical pioneer running military unit (7), PLATOON; 21. Smart answer -0 leave for my kind of town, going by air? (7), CHICAGO; 24. Little time left from main contents o acceptance speeches for lots of yarns (5), HANKS; 25. Man facing a lion, maybe, is ‘appy ‘e devoured that woman, we ‘ear (9),; GLADIATOR; 27. Saw nothing odd in city and state being on opposite sides (10), WASHINGTON; 28. Quaker leader making minimal change? Not quite (4), PENN.

Down — 1. First or second part of dance allowed in mountain dwelling (6), CHALET; 2. Mona Lisa, for one, producing main impact around Louvre, ultimately (6), BRUNET; 3. Role in “Spartacus” (4), PART; 4. Hot tune in musical (4O), HAIR; 5. Close-fitting hat silly silly Chloe put over her head (6), CLOCHE; 6. Husband entering without a weapon, safe and sound (8), ASHEN; 9. Deadly pale, like female apt to brood (5), PANNED; 10. Used revolutionary filming technique, heavily criticized (6), CUMIN; 14. From capsicum, Indians extract curry seasoning (5), FRANC; 17. Tending to be exclusive, tavern’s set up amidst confrontation (8), CLANNISH; 18. Excuses a large bird (6), ALIBIS; 19. Expression of irritation from Irish-born author under pressure (5), pshaw; 20. Stuff in bone that makes strange noises (6), OSSEIN; 22. Piece of patriotic music the man composed (6), ANTHEM; 23. A place for fighting with nothing on, having a row (6), OARING; 25. Popular movie of 1958 seen in private, perhaps, more than once (4), GIGI; 26. Characters in front of queue, we hear, in document position (4), ATOP.

I am… well… speechless!


Click on image to enlarge.

Puzzle available on the internet at

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

In the words of Bob Dylan "don't criticize what you can't understand". Plenty of NYT solvers had no problem with this puzzle, and most of them enjoyed it.

Brian Greer