Sunday, March 9, 2014

What's common to these clues?

question-mark Quick post to get your grey cells gymming on a Sunday.

The four fine clues below have a theme to them. Solve and tell what it is.

Guardian 25934 (Rufus): A sign of wrong and right, we hear, in puzzle (8) 

FT13718 (Dante): What's made for maid in house to clean and polish (9)

Guardian 26050 (Arachne): Promises no unfair wordplay (10)

Sunday Times 4476 (Anax): One is somewhat tired of waiter's method (7)

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14 comments

Bhavan said...

Meta-clues Shuchi :) Each one defining a clue type and using a wordplay of another type?

Guardian 25934 (Rufus): A sign of wrong and right, we hear, in puzzle (8) A CROS TIC (~cross tick)

FT13718 (Dante): What's made for maid in house to clean and polish (9) HO MOP HONE

Guardian 26050 (Arachne): Promises no unfair wordplay (10) SPOONERISM*

Sunday Times 4476 (Anax): One is somewhat tired of waiter's method (7) ANAGRAM def by example somewhat tired* = waiters' method

Col_Gopinath said...

{A}{CROSTIC}(~cross tick)
{HO}{MOP}{HONE}
SPOONERISM*
ANAGRAM (SOMEWHAT TIRED = WAITER"S METHOD) ?

Theme is obvious from the answers :-)

mohsin said...

A sign of wrong and right, we hear, in puzzle - ACROSTIC [~ cross ~tick]

What's made for maid in house to clean and polish - HOMOPHONE [OPHON (cannot anno) in HOME]

Promises no unfair wordplay - SPOONERISM [(promises no)*]

could not solve the last one

All the answers are clueing devices

Prabhanjan said...

Promises no unfair wordplay (10) SPOONERISM

Lakshmi Vaidyanathan (LV) said...

Hi Shuchi
Clue types :)

Guardian 25934 (Rufus): A sign of wrong and right, we hear, in puzzle (8)
ACROSTIC {A ( HP OF CROSS & TICK )

Guardian 26050 (Arachne): Promises no unfair wordplay (10)
SPOONERISM (Promises no)*

Sunday Times 4476 (Anax): One is somewhat tired of waiter's method (7)
ANAGRAM {somewht tired from (waiters method)*}

Raghunath said...

Guardian 25934 (Rufus): A CROS TIC Homophones Cross, tick

FT13718 (Dante): HOM(OP)(HONE)E. Clean: OP as in Work? Polish: HONE

Guardian 26050 (Arachne): SPOONERISM Anagram

tykewriter said...

I’m surprised no-one has commented yet. Well here goes.
ACROSTIC: sounds like “a cross” (a sign of wrong) and “tick” (a sign of right,
HO(use) MOP(=clean) HONE(=polish),
SPOONERISM: anagram of “promises no”
ANAGRAM: “somewhat tired” is one of “waiter’s method,
the theme being devices used in word puzzles.

Shuchi said...

@bhavan, @Col_Gopinath: That was quick work! You should be participating in advanced cryptic contests if not doing so already :-)

@mohsin, @Raghunath: Well solved. Remaining answer and anno correction below.

@Lakshmi: Indeed :-)

@tykewriter: Welcome here. I had the comments held up for moderation for a day so that readers who came later did not see spoilers.

The consolidated answers:

Guardian 25934 (Rufus): A sign of wrong and right, we hear, in puzzle (8) ACROSTIC
sounds like A CROSS TICK (sign of wrong and right); definition: puzzle

FT13718 (Dante): What's made for maid in house to clean and polish (9) HOMOPOHONE
HO (house) MOP (clean) HONE (polish); definition-by-example: what's made for maid

Guardian 26050 (Arachne): Promises no unfair wordplay (10) SPOONERISM
(PROMISES NO)*; definition: wordplay

Sunday Times 4476 (Anax): One is somewhat tired of waiter's method (7) ANAGRAM
SOMEWHATTIRED = (WAITERSMETHOD)*; definition-by-example: One is...

Theme: I like how Bhavan puts it - "Meta-clues: Each one defining a clue type and using wordplay of another type."

Raghunath said...

In the last clue is 'one is' needed?

VJ said...

Interesting set of clues there. Thanks for sharing. Liked Anax's one the best.

Raghu, in essence, if the clue is rewritten, it'd mean "Somewhat tired is _______ of waiter's method." So "one is" is required as it puts the clue in proper perspective i.e. the question is in a clear format for us to get to the answer.

Shuchi said...

@Raghunath: I prefer it with "One is", without it the definition seems incomplete.

Raghunath said...

I thought it could be:

Somewhat tired of waiter's method?

anax said...

@Raghunath
Yours is a valid suggestion, and I suspect there are newspapers where this clue idea would be accepted. It’s moving towards a rebus clue, so we can think along the lines of the SCRAMBLED EGGS (GEGS) and WATER (HIJKLMNO) clues. These were far more acceptable when they were originally published and cryptic clues were not as developed as they are now. Both elicit smiles but are technically unacceptable in the modern crossword, primarily as they lack any sort of definition – the WATER clue is also incorrect as it requires ‘2’ and ‘to’ to be synonymous, which they patently are not. To reduce my clue to:
Somewhat tired of waiter’s method? (7)
…looks OK at first, but the modern day cryptic makes far more technical demands. Shuchi’s latest post about ‘setter’ seems appropriate at this point. Even within the past few years we’ve seen many clues incorporating ‘definition by example’; it’s become so prevalent that it’s commonly recognised as the abbreviation DBE. A DBE clue – considered faulty these days – is when the definition is an example of the answer. Thus the answer DOG might be indicated as ‘setter’ in the clue. We can’t get away with this any more. ‘Dog’ as a definition for SETTER is perfectly good, of course, but we can no longer do things the other way around. We have to indicate that we’re offering an example, so we could use eg ‘Setter, for example/perhaps/is one’.
Your clue, pleasing as it is to read, is only offering a DBE as its definition. Oh, believe me, I wanted so much to do something similar! But by adding ‘is one’ and ‘of’ I simply tried to make sure there was no room for complaint.

Raghunath said...

Thanks and nice to have your reply, Anax. It does put matters into perspective. BTW a very nice clue!