3D Crossword Solution – February 2022

February 2022 grid page

Clues and Grid by Puck

Theme: Ulysses by James Joyce

The winner of the February puzzle is Max Jackson of Oxford.

Review of the February 2022 3D crossword

We were told that this puzzle celebrates the 100th anniversary of a publication and the 140th anniversary of a birth. A pseudonym (5,6) hinted at in 5 solutions of a kind can be made up from the yellow cells. The pseudonym is to be submitted with your solution. Clues are in alphabetical order.

This puzzle was the last created for us by Puck before ill health caused him to withdraw from the 3D project. We miss his editorial skills on the puzzle front and his wit and talent as a setter.

I thought on this occasion to carefully log exactly when I spotted the theme. I failed to get very far with the picture clue; obviously bees and reversed odd numbers but nothing clicked. I’d solved a random selection of clues by number eight including, crucially, 20ac MOLLY and 19up SWEET. For my ninth clue I was looking at Day 4 16aw “When entertaining ladies, maybe Buck Mulligan primarily displays what could be 19up, 28up”. By some alchemy Ulysses and Leopold Bloom came to mind. (I guess my recollection of the third of Ulysses that I’ve actually read, Molly and Buck Mulligan coupled with Sweet William contributed to the neural pathway. That and LOO in BM plus, of course, press coverage of the anniversary of Ulysses). My tenth and eleventh clues solved were STEPHEN DEDALUS and WILLIAM JOYCE and we were well on our way.

Back to the picture clue for my twelfth clue; with B-D- – – S in place we have what should have been obvious from the start—‘bees’ around ‘odd’ in reverse—BEDDOES. My only excuse is that I have never heard of Thomas Beddoes (macabre, mad and sad is, I think, a good summary) and after reading about him will almost certainly soon forget him.

The yellow shaded squares yielded HENRY FLOWER, a pseudonym for Leopold Bloom.

An elegant 3D crossword with all the right ingredients. Your comments showed that you all enjoyed it as much as I did. I agree with PC who comments: “Excellent 3D by Puck. I liked FIBRATE best in a very interesting thematical. Thank you”.

Grid solution

February 2022 grid solution

Visual clue

The mirror image of a string of ODD numbers is surrounded by BEES, giving:

ODD (reversed) in BEES = BEDDOES

Visual clue for BEDDOES
Drawing by Frank Paul

Clues and explanations

Thematic solutions are indicated with an asterisk.

DaySolutionDirection, Clue, CountExplanation
1ALLAH7ac,8aw-3 Content to call a halt, in the name of God … (5)Hidden answer
2AWLS7aw-4 … having periodically skipped bits as well, initially saying they’re boring? (4)a[s] w[e]l[l] + s[aying]
3BEDDOES16ac,18aw-3 “Where 4ers may 4” suffices for macabre poet (7)Bed + does; 4=bloom
4BLOOM*16aw When entertaining ladies, maybe Buck Mulligan primarily displays what could be 19up,28up (5)loo in B[uck] M[ulligan]; 19up=sweet, 28up=William; Buck Mulligan appears in Ulysses
5DAMN27up-4 Curse lady of honour briefly by name (4)Dam[e] + n
6DEFAMED23ba,22aw Said malicious things about unfinished musical? Yes, indeed! (7)Fam[e] in deed
7DWELL17aw Live with wife in wooded valley (5)w in dell
8ETHEL11ba Merman perhaps sees forgetfulness-inducing flower when moving nose to tail (5)Lethe, with L moved to the end; Ethel Merman
9FIBRATE22up Compound reducing fat levels due to speed of pork pie production? (7)fib rate; pork pie=lie=fib
10HALLO10to,8ac Greeting from computer before first bit of login’s over (5)HAL + l[ogin’s] + O
11IRISH*13ac,14to-3 What’s sometimes 4ing hard work like 4ac 4to’s 29 is (5)Iris + H; 4ac,4to=James Joyce; 29up=Ulysses
12JAMES*4ac Played with Jasmine? Not in this Manchester band (5)Anag of Jasm[in]e
13JOIN4d-4 13th century King Henry becoming the first to marry (4)John, with I for H
14LEOPOLD*2d King lost poodle, going walkabout (7)L + anag of poodle
15LOTUS*2aw Creator of 4s, with plenty gathering in 29’s opening (5)U[lysses] in lots; 4=bloom, 29=Ulysses
16MOLLY*20ac 4 like a gangster’s girlfriend? (5)Moll-y; 4=Bloom
17MONKS5to Brothers’ toxic 4er, ignoring hood (5)Monks[hood]; 4=bloom
18MUSIC25ac Strains to be heard by Martha Clifford initially, without at first using secret identity (5)u[sing] s[ecret] i[dentity] in M[artha] C[lifford]; Martha Clifford appears in Ulysses
19OPENS*9aw Starts to 4 as writer when inspired by origins of Odyssey saga (5)pen in O[dyssey] s[aga]; 4=bloom
20PLAY*15up Perform Prince song (4)P + lay
21POEM*15d Flower Puck turned up in Tennyson’s 29, perhaps (4)Po + me(rev.); 29=Ulysses
22SEC19d Speech oddly dry, rather than 26 or fruity (3)S[p]e[e]c[h]; 26=sweet
23SEE TO19ba Deal with duck after putting flower back (3,2)Tees(rev.) + 0
24SIRIUS12aw,13ac Star grid designer (6)Two definitions
25STEPHEN DEDALUS*26up,23up 4ac 4to’s alter ego? Doctor pleaded “He’s nuts” (7,7)Anag of (pleaded He’s nuts); 4ac,4to=James Joyce
26SWEET*19up Delightful second short message, after first deleted (5)S + [t]weet
27TANSY*3ba 4er caused by brown study when discontented? (5)tan + s[tud]y; 4=bloom
28TEASEL*6up,1ac 4er by guy, learner driver (6)tease + L; 4=bloom
29ULYSSES*29up Grant perhaps for 18th century 20 also booked as part of July’s sessions (7)Hidden answer; Ulysses Grant; 20=play; Rowe’s 1705 Ulysses
30UNCODED29to,24ba-3 Fish-eating representation of nude? That’s not cryptic, somehow (7)cod in anag of nude
31UNWED29ba Single women entertained by a French duke (5)w in (une + d)
32WILLIAM JOYCE*28up,4to Broadcaster of Nazi propaganda’s shocking “oily Jew” claim (7,5)Anag of (oily Jew claim); William Joyce=Lord Haw-Haw
33WISE28to Desire reduced by drug? That’s sensible (4)Wis[h] + E
34YES21to-3 It’s 33, we hear, when covering English prog rock band (3)E in Ys; homophone of “wise”; 33=wise
RequiredHENRY FLOWERPseudonym (5,6)Pseudonym used by LEOPOLD BLOOM in ULYSSES

Solvers’ comments

Nicely packed with thematic material. Will this be the year when I finally get around to finishing reading Ulysses (after many starts have ground to a halt after a couple of chapters)? [TH]

Online a day early, now what do I do for February 🤔 [MN]

Much, much more fun than my attempt to read the book 🙂 [RE]

Although I’ve never been able to finish Ulysses, I know enough about it (aided by Google) to solve the relevant clues. For once I got a solution from the picture clue instead of the text! Several of the clues raised a smile. Thanks, Puck! [RS]

Educational! At least I now know the names of characters in this work which does NOT feature on my reading list! [DB]

Really enjoyed and amazed at the number of connections with the theme [RC]

Excellent 3D by Puck. I liked Fibrate best in a very interesting thematical. Thank you. [PC]

A worthy celebration of the world’s greatest partially-read (in my case) novel. I know enough that the ‘Buck Mulligan’ of the cornerstone clue 4 is a massive hint. So clever that the answer to the last clue, 34, is the last word of 29 the book! Now, I really must get round to the remaining 704 pages … [PA]

Completed on 2 February – a fitting celebration of Ulysses’ publication. [JM]

Enjoyable theme and clueing, and another new word. Fibrate is especially welcome in the current climate 🙂 [CW]

4ing fascinating. I congratulate Puck on how well linked the clues are [HB]

Very enjoyable – although I initially missed most of the references to Joyce’s work, not having read Ulysses. [RG]

Lovely to have a puzzle from our eminent and mischievous IRISH setter Puck – and a very appropriate theme for the setter to select, since James Joyce has been reclaimed as something of a national hero these days. Even though I studied Joyce at University (a VERY long time ago now) and I could vaguely recall “Finnegan’s Wake”, I recall much more about the long poem “Ulysses” by Alfred, Lord Tennyson than I do about the Joyce novel of the same name. So I had to do a lot of reading regarding the life and works of Joyce online in order to make total sense of this puzzle. But those forays made it an interesting and enjoyable solve. Aswell as admiring the well-executed theme, I particularly like the way Puck referenced our much-loved and highly-regarded SIRIUS on Day 24. Thanks very much to Puck and sending very best wishes from an Aussie who still claims Irish heritage (now third generation) and maintains contact with cousins in Cork. [JA]

Not difficult to guess the theme given the current publicity. [MJ]

I loved every bit of it. Challenging crossword but not too impossible! [LA]

Haven’t read the book, but the satellite was enough of a clue to get us started. [RS]

Loved it! [HH]

Enjoyable puzzle. Good theme for me. Clear and witty clues. [JP]

Topical theme, would have been harder to guess if Radio 4 hadn’t talked about it so much this week. Good set of clues that we rattled off unusually quickly. [J&JH]

Wasn’t familiar with Joyce’s Ulysses so a fair bit of research needed, but that was quite interesting. [JC]

No problem in identifying the theme, as there’s just been a lot of commemoration of the work on the radio – however I did need to rely on the internet for the ‘Easter egg’ (would have guessed Fowler) not having read the book. After finding the poet on the 3rd, it wasn’t hard to decipher Frank Paul’s drawing this time, though I don’t recognise the spacecraft pictured. (It doesn’t look like the 1990 Ulysses mission as shown on the NASA site). Commendations on getting so much thematic material in! [PM]

Another great puzzle. I knew nothing about the book Ulysses so a fair amount of googling was required to check some of the clues. My favourite clue was 24 Star grid designer. [MP]

Delightfully intricate! Even though I got the essential point quite quickly, I’m embarrassed at how long it took me to get ‘Bloom’! I actually set myself reading Ulysses as a personal lockdown challenge and got through it though found it disappointing! [EF]

Superb! [RP]

A learning project as always. [AM]

Lovely puzzle, thank you. Took less time to complete than the book allegedly takes to read! [JT]

I had to work hard to correct an early mistake but it was worth it (as am I). [ET]

A theme that was not within my knowledge or experience but a fun and fair solve [JN]

This puzzle celebrates the 100th anniversary of James Joyce’s Ulysses and the 140th anniversary of the author’s birth. As always, I am much more knowledgeable about the theme of the puzzle and have enjoyed the challenge. Thank you. [SF]

Loved it! First time attempting a 3D puzzle, found this to be both an impressive feat of construction and very enjoyable to solve. Thank you to all involved! [DB]

A VERY clever and beautifully interlocking puzzle given the constraints of the grid. Worthy of the great man (JJ) himself, and testament to his playful love of language! Everyone’s favourite clue HAS to be day 24, right? I am already quaking at the very thought of the August puzzle… [MS]

Buck Mulligan from one of my favourite books made the theme clear, though getting 4 took time. Not many on first pass, but it fell together well after that. Favourite 29. Thanks Puck 😎👍 [DM]

Difficult! [AH]

Very tricky, but not as difficult to finish as the book..! [DH]

My only cover is that I am certain not to be the only person who has diligently filled in the solutions to this brilliant puzzle without having done the homework. Everything I’ve heard about Joyce says how wonderful he is – I’m just not brave enough to start. Why? Never met an Irish person I didn’t like, and all the references and the music sound up my street. Maybe if we do have a decent summer I shall be able to read it in the garden this year, from mid-June perhaps? Thank you Puck for a superb crossword. [AC]

Flowers will never be the same again! Enjoyed this one – thank you. [JB]

What a splendid reminder of this modernist classic! Loads of references to the text woven into the clues. Blooming brilliant! [N&SI]

Excellently woven theme (on a book that still daunts!). And fun clues. [NH]

Never read the book but I knew the characters. Favourite clues has to be the star grid designer! [PD]

I enjoyed it! [EW]

Very enjoyable. Thanks! [JS]

As astronomers, the cheeky backrground photo totally threw us off, loved that sneakiness. Lots of very satisfying clues and solutions, thanks as always. [AH]

Lovely puzzle with 2 good themes and challenging but fair clues. Thanks to all [BS]

It was great. Had a Ulysses passel last year. Kept him occupied. [RG]

Loved it [AM]

Another fascinating puzzle with some cleverly constructed clues. I enjoyed the cross-linking of the “Bloom(er)s” The reminder that this is the 100th anniversary of this remarkable novel makes me even more determined to have a go at reading it at last. I never got round to it somehow…. [SB]

Really enjoyed this puzzle great fun. [GW]

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