The Gold from the 5th of June

20 across, 23 down: Move to clothe a local vagrant (3, 4, 3, 2, 4)

It’s cheeky, it’s funny; it’s DA: move = get your bum in gear = to clothe a local vagrant.

18 across: It’s close to pitch in heart! (5)

Any half-decent &lit clue needs to be mentioned in the gold, and this one is more than half decent: it’s close = nigh, pitch in heart = t and it’s close to pitch in heart = night = it’s close to pitch in heart (It’s close to pitch black in the middle of the night).

16 down: Rake up flower patch, exposing gold and red primrose border (9)

A difficult, delightful clue with a well-hidden and well-chosen direct clue. Up flower patch = deb, exposing gold = au, red = che and primrose border = e, all of which gives up flower patch, exposing gold and red primrose border = debauchee = rake.

Interesting side note: rake meaning debauchee is an abbreviation of rakehell from olden times.

17 across: …eccentric course, heading inside (5)

Clever way to twist a word with course = route so that course, heading inside = outre = eccentric.

15 across: Cleared against the greatest old… (9)

Here, against = v, the greatest = ali (the golden moment) and old = dated so that against the greatest old = validated = cleared.

11 down: Socially smiting perhaps? Not all, but half of us! (12)

This is an outstanding almost-anagram and &lit to boot, but it’s not the neatest of clues. Here, it’s socially smiting perhaps? not all (but half of us is unaccounted for indirectly) = misogynistic + all – all = misogynistic = socially smiting perhaps? Not all, but half of us.

8 down: 1-across (Indecisive) quality of Manx dog climbing barrier I’d installed (10)

Here, there’s a nice use of Manx as a wordplay instruction so that dog = Fido and Manx dog = Fido – o = fid, which when combined with the rest of the clue gives Manx dog climbing = dif and barrier = fence so that Manx dog climbing barrier I’d installed = diffidence = indecisive quality.

2 down: Dunderhead, it’s said! (4)

Another &lit, and this one is perhaps my favourite despite others being not so happy with it. Here, we’ve got dunderhead = d and it’s said = itz giving dunderhead, it’s said = ditz = dunderhead, it’s said.

14 down: Likely fugitive pale during search (6, 4)

Another example of DA making a clue out of a sentence that makes complete sense so it’s difficult to figure out where the direct and indirect parts of the clue begin and end. Here, it’s search = frisk and pale = light, which makes during the excellent containment indicator so that pale during search = flight risk = likely fugitive.

6 thoughts on “The Gold from the 5th of June

  1. If I’ve understood the explanations above correctly, I think there are slight inaccuracies for a couple of &lit clues.

    11D: The last four words do not participate in the wordplay, so I think the first part of the equation should omit those four words.

    2D: “it’s said” does not participate in the direct definition, so the last part of the equation should omit those words.

  2. 2D is fine. It’s said can be included as part of the definition, as in “It’s said that he was a bit of a dunderhead, a ditz if you will”.

    11D I’ll fix up.

  3. re 11D: I thought this was an absolute ripper from DA. “Socially smiting” implies one social group attacking another. A hint of what’s to come. “perhaps”, an indicator of an anagram. “not all” indicates exclude the letters “all” from the anagram . Thus “socially smiting” becomes “misogynistic” (very neat) “Half of us” refers to the male/female divide, in this case a hater of women (misogynist). Clever stuff.
    Slightly off subject : there was a clue in the Weekend Australian ‘s Times crossword that was surely a joy for all cryptic fans:
    4D Making parts of strap, perhaps, and shoving under a horse (11)
    ANAGRAMMING! ( Think about it)

  4. AL – very nice. Some good ones on their way in the DA of 12 June too – 2D and 24A, and some comedy with 6D and 18D. I can only assume that if I’ve managed to solve it by mid-morning Saturday that Tony T would have knocked it off early yesterday …

  5. Except for one clue, I solved the 12 June yesterday too, haiku! I had the day off work though & I could concentrate on it.

    I still haven’t got 22D. I expect it must be some word I have never heard of, like “nerf” last week. I think I will google all the possible combinations of the remaining letters…

    Are you back in Melbourne, AS?

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