Listen With Others

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Listener No 4526: Quads III by Shark

Posted by Dave Hennings on 16 November 2018

This was the fifth Shark Listener puzzle, and the third in the Quads series. I suppose it would be natural to expect a fourth, but this one would be hard to top.

There’s only time for some brief thoughts from me this week. For a start 33 out of 44 clues used a gimmick that took me a few minutes to get my head round: “… one letter and spacing have been changed in the definition…”. This was thoroughly entertaining, and made some of the clues a real pig (apologies to pigs). The first clue I solved was Five rallying game with Croatia (4) which became River allying game with Croatia (4) leading to RUHR (RU + HR). Shark clues are generally pretty tough but this added an extra dimension of toughness. Here are some highlights:

14ac EASES Almost stand opening of sitcom for us (5) became
Almost stand opening of sit comforts (5)
EASE(l) + S(it)
30ac QUI-HYE No longer arrogant after unionist’s introduced to chief fluent Anglo-Indian (6) became
No longer arrogant after unionist’s introduced to chi affluent Anglo-Indian (6)
HYE after (U in QI)
40ac ATTEST Man of estate travels round Thailand with mum (6) became
Manifest ate travels round Thailand with mum (6)
ATE around T + ST
8dn OLE In Spain, who online gets sucked into withdrawn game? (3) became
In Spain, whoop line gets sucked into withdrawn game? (3)
L in EO<
25dn MOGHUL Tom, possibly, with bulk to evict one liberally nasty member from India (6) became
Tom, possibly, with bulk to evict one liberal dynasty member from India (6)
MOG + HULL – L
 

Eventually, the message spelt out by the wrong letters in these clues gave Fourth letter in words — standard clues. It took a few minutes to sort this out. At first I thought it must be the fourth letter of the first word in each clue. Nope! It turned out to be the fourth letter in all words that had 4 or more letters — a nice thematic touch that fitted into the overall theme. These gave: Each grid corner’s four-by-four region taken en masse. Snipping the four corners out and rearranging them revealed the two-word term for what was left: GREEK CROSS.

Finally, the preamble told us that this remainder had to be cut into four identical pieces and rearranged to form another square with a 10-letter thematic word to be highlighted: TETRAMERAL was the word, meaning four-parted.

Fantastic puzzle, as expected, Shark. How can you top it?!
 

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