Monday, December 20, 2010

Lift and Separate

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definition-wordplay-joint A major part of solving cryptic clues is identifying which is the definition, which the wordplay. This can be quite easy in clues like:

FT 13525 (Dante): Colin acted badly in Western (10)

"badly" jumps out as a possible anagrind and the ten letters before it look like anagram fodder for the ten-letter answer. Of the rest, we reason, "in" must be a connector and "Western" the definition.

FT 13570 (Falcon): Vessel from Kenya or Tanzania (5) 

The definition has to be "vessel", we decide. The word "from" flags that the definition lies before it and the definition for a 5-letter word is more likely to be "vessel" than "Tanzania".

Not all clues let us detect their structure so readily. Some create a joint so compelling between definition and wordplay, it takes an act of supreme will for the solver to pry them apart. This is popularly called "lift and separate". [Apparently the term was coined/first used by reigning Times Crossword Championship winner Mark Goodliffe – anyone know when/where?]

Here are a few clues that require the "lift and separate" treatment, for you to admire and solve:

FT13571 (Aardvark): Aching to cook and eat Welsh rabbit (7) C_____G

Times 24702: Odin's son has a mark on map to denote treasure chest (6) T_____

FT 13541 (Alberich): Location for Santa Maria's centre reached outward (6) G_O___

FT 13558 (Loroso): One found at back of strip club in India (5) L____

FT 13403 (Loroso): As they say, the crown will be dethroned (6) T____E

FT 13403 (Loroso): A frame for turning over hot bread (6) M_____

Guardian 25169 (Cincinnus): Using empty shed to trap brown bear (9) W________

[Answers in the comments]

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6 comments

Shyam said...

FT13571 (Aardvark): Aching to cook and eat Welsh rabbit (7)
(CHIN{W}AG)*

Times 24702: Odin's son has a mark on map to denote treasure chest (6)
THOR A X (X for a mark on map to denote treasure?! OMG)

FT 13541 (Alberich): Location for Santa Maria's centre reached outward (6)
G{R}OT TO (My pick of the lot :))

FT 13558 (Loroso): One found at back of strip club in India (5) LATH I (lath:strip)

FT 13403 (Loroso): As they say, the crown will be dethroned (6) TOPPLE (~top'll)

FT 13493 (Loroso): A frame for turning over hot bread (6)
MOOL<- A H

Guardian 25169 (Cincinnus): Using empty shed to trap brown bear (9)
WITH{S {TAN}D} (Easiest of the lot)

David John said...

Vessel from Kenya or Tanzania (5)

Vessel = AORTA (Telescopic..)

Balaji said...

FT13571 (Aardvark): Aching to cook and eat Welsh rabbit (7) CHIN(W)AG*

FT 13541 (Alberich): Location for Santa Maria's centre reached outward (6) G(R)OT TO

FT 13558 (Loroso): One found at back of strip club in India (5) LATH I

FT 13403 (Loroso): A frame for turning over hot bread (6) (MOOL A)< H

Guardian 25169 (Cincinnus): Using empty shed to trap brown bear (9) WITH S(-HE) (TAN) D

Balaji said...

1 more w/ online help.

Times 24702: Odin's son has a mark on map to denote treasure chest (6) THOR A X(mark on map in treasure hunt)

Siva said...

Odin's son has a mark on map to denote treasure chest (6)
[THORAX]
Using empty shed to trap brown bear (9)
[WITHSTAND]

Shuchi said...

Found a very nice example in today's Times crossword.

Times 25003: Solemn moment for a Christian Dior creation to have France, say, after it (10)