Hints & Tips August 2023

August 2023 grid page

Clues and Grid by Sirius

Enter the prize draw by 31 August.

The background for this puzzle is a CC0 image representing a magnetic diamond set in a polarised force field.

This puzzle uses an eight dials torus grid with the dials presented on top of each other as a cylinder, modelling a cylindrical magnet in a magnetic field. Lines of force connect the top and bottom cells of a column to form a ring. Down or up clues marked (torus) follow these lines of force.

Solutions are presented in alphabetical order of their solutions, with one thematic exception. Significant words and phrases may be clued without definition. Solvers should submit with their solution a thematically related expression (7,3,8) formed from three words appearing in the completed grid.

The entry that is alphabetically out of order is by far the most famous of several phrases spoken on a famous occasion. Clued by a very long anagram or two, it appears about two thirds of the way through the puzzle.

If solvers have difficulty submitting their solutions then we advise them to start by reading the hint for Day 31.

Sirius conjures a vision of memorials and monuments, a huge crowd, a reflecting pool and soaring oratory. We trust that solvers will reach the promised land of a correct solution.

Day 2

Change communion table in litany (5)

In litany is the appropriate indicator that a homophone is required. The answer sounds like a communion table but is instead a word meaning change. [NI]

Day 6

FBI bêtes noires show disapproval of agents wanting to secure end of revolutionary (8)

Firstly (3 letters) giving vocal disapproval at a public meeting, followed by a nickname for FBI agents (1-3) and finally replacing the hyphen with the last letter in revolutionary. (Note: the UK spelling is shorter by one letter)

21down torus? Method: locate the pink square 21 on level three. From there enter your solution downwards. So that’s 1+5 letters. Now return to level one (same place) and again down for 2 letters. Bingo! Total = 8. Always the pink square in the same vertical line. (Additional aid = NB) [GS]

Day 8

Such a punch card voting machine is without card hole aggregate debris for starters (8)

Looks complicated at first, but notice ‘for starters’ which leads you to the first letters of the previous four words. You are also told that your answer would be without these. [JP]

Day 11

Sweet sixteen’s heading into neglect (7)

Forget Neil Sedaka. Take the first letter from sixteen (heading) and put it into another word for neglect. Result? Not so much Newsagent, more Restaurant. [GS]

Day 12

Dream singers, Beverley Sisters, first going topless in broadcast and then transitioning (6,8)

‘Broadcast’ in a crossword clue usually means ‘sounds like’. Remove the first letter from Beverley (first going topless) and what does that sound like? And transitioning? Well, still family members but not girls. For younger solvers one of their big hits featured the word Dream (repeated many times). [GS]

Day 19

Phil Mitchell’s fan ‘eater disturbed group of ‘bu’erflies and many moffs’ (8)

Disturbed suggests an anagram, of the two preceding words. The answer is an unfamiliar word (check with OneLook) meaning a suborder of Lepidoptera containing the butterflies and most of the moths. [NI]

Day 23

11th century bishop set to sail closer to the wind with a rough US scrubber (5)

This conjures up a strange picture, but is actually giving you three clues to the answer (11th century bishop {of Chichester}, sail closer to the wind with a, rough US {spelling} scrubber). [JP]

Day 31

Chilled with cold in eastern Missouri, we hear, once Scotch bonnet’s blown off head? (5)

You’re looking for an unfamiliar Scottish word for chilled with cold. We hear indicates that it sounds like the second (eastern) half of Missouri. It is also an unfamiliar Scottish word for a bonnet missing its first letter. Unfortunately two of the three spellings given in Chambers for this 5-letter word seem like valid answers to me. The required solution is the second one listed, which contains a double letter. [NI]

Day 39

M-A-G-I-C member of splinter group (5)

Indications of several different meanings of this word: the hyphenation of M-A-G-I-C suggests someone reading out letter by letter. Another meaning is a magic formula. Finally it is also a dialect word for a splinter. [NI]

Day 41

Marvelous chap from Scandinavia claps producer/writer refusing symbolic medal (4)

The answer here is a Marvelous (in the sense of comics or blockbuster films) chap from Scandinavia, who produces claps (of a meteorological nature). Look for a word for writer and remove a 2-letter symbol for a medal (at the Olympics). [NI]

Day 42

Gobble loads of tuck after assembly and aerate hooters perhaps (7)

Gobble loads of tuck brings Billy Bunter to mind and he certainly did this to his face! After assembly doesn’t refer to school, but to another assembly identified by two letters. Put these two letters before your word for gobble to give ‘aerate hooters’. [JP]

I am grateful to the other members of the Hints & Tips team: Garry Stripling (Gin) and Jim Pennington (Philostrate).

Happy solving!

Nick Inglis (etc)

3 thoughts on “Hints & Tips August 2023

  1. You didn’t go wrong, Rachel. Ourie is a perfectly valid answer which should have been accepted. It is disappointing that there has been no apology for this.

    1. Quite right. Both versions should have been accepted as tourie is an alternative spelling of toorie. All submissions of OURIE have been retrospectively marked as correct. Apologies for it not having been picked up earlier.

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