Independent 1033

This is the first Phi daily puzzle in the Independent series, appearing on 3 February, 1990.  At a distance of 20+ years, I can’t remember much about it now.  One thing that is still clear is that I was told my first appearance was going to be 10 February – I recall nipping out to buy the paper on 3 February, then charging home full of surprise.

I’ve reproduced the clues exactly as they were in the paper, except for a typo I don’t recall noticing at the time.  At the time, the Independent had a strict roster of about 25 grids (later expanded to 33) – I see I chose grid no.13 for my début.


1             Treatment for hip – deal offered by operating theatre? (7)

5             Regulations overturned about greeting one in this language (7)

9             Love to talk wittily at a party (but not in time to swing) (9)

10           Borders town half-keen on orchestra (5)

11           Get rusty pole to connect both sides of entrance (5)

12           Pawnbroker’s a communist but still not paid up (9)

14           Where the knapsack is not entirely open? (6,4,4)

17           Wilde use of feet – fan accused – provocation with response? (5,3,6)

21           Passing skill backed by tennis playing (9)

23           He’s unlikely to take a catch in the deep (5)

24/22d  Curiously using cigar as cake decoration (5)

25           Measure of Scotch is swallowed by one abstaining – he may make a scene (9)

26           Unexciting activity died? Peculiar (7)

27           Back last amount of rock to contain sulphur (7)


1             Bird eggs upset, shattered etc (6)

2             Middle of fence to fail? Then it won’t do this! (7)

3             Beat poetry enthrals one after a Yank, mostly (9)

4             I start to notice a rabbit hop to a large extent (2,9)

5             Girl with sex-appeal leaving hotel room (3)

6             Joint from one deer that’s been raised (5)

7             Bardic venue – unpleasant, the reverse of spacious (7)

8             Military leader discharged round into US General (4,4)

13           Think carefully about prisoner needing to take heart about visiting (11)

15           Most of fleet turned and argued wildly for protection (9)

16           Caught in boozer, this drunk from 10? (8)

18           Well-bred hesitation when accepting princess as U? (7)

19           A working boat dog, right? (7)

20           Shrub sample’s apparent in tree, looking up? (6)

22           See 24 across

25           Angry over blockage? (3)

(PDF of puzzle)


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