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Colgan's Cryptic Crossword

Crossword gridAcross

1. Criminal’s means of transport (6)
4. How to manage hair concession (6)
9. Six-footer, big guy, shanghaied vocal member of band (7,6)
10. Office customs (4)
11. Loveless couple ached and ached (8)
13. Sweet-talk has spiciness left out (5,6)
16. Delicate past returns to hang over present (8)
17. Perhaps The Sound of Music’s character needs no introduction (4)
19. In summary, to play ball involves plan to get in the black (13)
20. Present time keeps going ahead (6)
21. National pin-up’s carried along (6)


1. Turn in stuff to a place of religion (6)
2. Sartre character developed gunmetal shaft (4-6,3)
3. Where to buy English horse? (4)
5. Of course it’s not compulsory! (8)
6. Gear used in game on island (5,8)
7. Hear flanks close in (6)
8. Big-head nearly gets workers’ vote (4,2,5)
12. Lewd sound, but right one for Penny? (8)
14. Surrounded, made an unlawful deal (6)
15. No arrest when climbing tree (6)
18. Dance preoccupies one group of American Indians (4)

Book voucher to win

For your chance to win a $40 book voucher, email your completed crossword to len.colgan@unisa.edu.au or fax (08) 8302 5785 by Friday July 18.

Solutions published online on Friday August 8.


Solution gridExplanations  (C = cryptic part of clue +  S = straight part of clue or S + S = clue holding answer twice with two different straight meanings or POW = play on words.)
Note that joining words may or may not be an integral part of the clue.
Punctuation and capital letters are irrelevant.
The art of the setter is to make it non-obvious how and where to split the clue, and to mislead the solver along an irrelevant path.


1.    S: criminal = pusher
       S: means of transport = pusher
4.    C: how to manage hair (perm it)
       S: concession = permit
9.    C: big guy, shanghaied (Goliath) vocal member of band (homonym of Beatle)
       S: six-footer = Goliath beetle
10.  S: office = duty
       S: customs = duty
11.  C: loveless couple (“two” without “o”) ached (itched)
       S: ached = twitched
13.  C: spiciness (curry flavour) left out (without “l”)
       S: sweet-talk = curry favour
16.  C: past returns (“late” reversed) to hang over present (outside “here”)
       S: delicate = ethereal
17.  C: The Sound of Music’s character (Maria) needs no introduction (no “M”)
       S: Perhaps the sound of music = aria
19.  C: play ball (comply) involves plan to get in the black (outside “end IOUs”)
       S: in summary = compendiously
20.  C: time (date) keeps going ahead (outside “on”)
       S: present = donate
21.  C: pin up (“nail”, reversed) carried along (outside “by”)
       S: national = Libyan


1.    C: turn in stuff (“go” in “pad”) to a (a)
       S: place of religion = pagoda
2.    C: developed gunmetal shaft (anagram of “gunmetal shaft”)
       S: Sartre character = self-taught man
3.    C: English (E) horse (bay)
       S: where to buy = Ebay
5.    S: it’s not compulsory = elective
       S: course = elective
6.    C: game (match) island (Guernsey)
       S: gear = match guernsey
7.    C: hear (try) flanks close (outside “end”)
       S: in = trendy
8.    C: big-head nearly (show-off, without last letter) workers (hands)
       S: vote = show of hands
12.  C: sound (prudent) but right one for Penny (but “rI” for “d”)
       S: lewd = prurient
14.  S: surrounded = fenced
       S: made an unlawful deal = fenced
15.  C: no arrest (nay, nab) climbing (upside down)
       S: tree = banyan
18.  C: dance (hop) preoccupies one (before “I”)
       S:  group of American Indians = Hopi