Listener Crossword 3977: Solution Notes

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City Tour by Mango

Puzzle explanation

Misplaced words in clues were as shown in the table below. This table also shows, with the symbol /, one possible relocation for each word; in some cases there are other viable positions.

The French mathematician Edouard Lucas almost certainly invented the game “La Tour d’Hanoi” (The Tower of Hanoi), in which a set of rings of different sizes must be moved one at a time from the first of three pegs to another, via the third where necessary, with no ring ever finding itself on top of a smaller one. So LA, TOUR, DHANOI, representing the three rings, moved optimally from top left to bottom right, leaving E LUCAS himself unmoved (highlighting optional). First letters of misplaced words gave co-ordinate pairs for the seven moves required, starting with BR to MV, and so on. The last pair indicated the location of the inventor. Original answers were Across: 11 oral 13 retour 17 noisome 28 Nevada 35 nuclear 39 sunbed 40 boatel 41 veal; Down: 2 ared 3 lathy 4 faunas 5 error 14 pieced 16 afreet 20 subset 25 ukases 29 abrupt 32 oasis 33 robes 37 geat.

Clue explanations

Conventions: * = anagram, < = reversal

No Word shift Answer Explanation
ACROSS
1 balls → fried / FALAFELS FALLS about ((m)EA(t) + F(ish))*
7 Religious → one / leader IMAM MAM after I
11 Mark → exam / lost ORAL MORAL – M
12 varied → seasoning / at TAMALE AT MEAL*
13 RETOUR TRUE OR*
15 URDÉ (b)URDE(n)
17 Contemplative → containing / word NOISOME NOISE about OM
18 Queen → outside / WAYFARE W + FAY* + AE about R
19 Hence → question, / right Q-SORT Q + SO + RT
24 Suck → extracted / mostly SUCCUS SUC(k) + SUC(k) <
26 ARIEL Hidden
27 ABELE A + BELLE – L
28 military → to / computer NEVADA N + E + V + ADA
30 Villager’s → fixing / _____ SNATH Composite anagram: HARVESTING’s ALL → VILLAGER’S + SNATH, & lit
31 grief → in / fear SOBERER BE in SORE + (fea)R
35 Totally → uranium / NUCLEAR N + U + CLEAR
38 AIRY FAIRY – F
39 SUNBED (B + NUDES)*
40 Damaged → towable, / freed BOATEL TOWABLE* – W
41 pound → each / dead VEAL V + EA + L
42 Milton’s → yes, / entirely INLY IN + L(iterati) + Y(es)
43 tune → No/, strangely DISTASTE UNITED STATES* – TUNE*
DOWN
1 grabbing → listener’s / short FORSWEARS (FOR + EAR’S) about SW
2 Titian → Academician’s / maybe ARED A + (Titian) RED
3 Dropped → ping / similar LATHY PLAYTHING* – PING
4 recreation → groups / holding FAUNAS FUN about A + A(fternoon) + S(essions)
5 ERROR ER + RO-R(o)
6 SANS Two definitions
8 Hurt → monkey /? Doctor’s MARMOSET MAR + MO + SET
9 stylish → river / ALDER-FLY LEAD* + R + FLY
10 Level → crossing / in MEET Two definitions
14 United → City / PIECED PIED about EC
16 AFREET A + FREE + ’T
20 SUBSET ET after SUBS
21 Do → of / cold-hearted THE CRADLE (COLD-HEARTED – DO)*
22 Run → not / out TRUNNION IN NOT RUN*
23 Kazakhstani → a / river BINAURAL NIB < + A + URAL
25 vetoed → time / UKASES UK + SEATS* – T
29 ABRUPT AB + R + UP + DEBT – DEB
32 OASIS OAS + IS & lit
33 Has → returned / ROBES (’S + EBOR) <
34 Redesigned → footwear / a TABI A BIT*
36 Heine’s → in / lyric LIED Two definitions
37 weighty → in / without GEAT GREAT – R
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