Listener Crossword 3980: Solution Notes

Back to 2008 menu

Closed Doors by The Tall’n

Puzzle explanation

The Royal Shakespeare Theatre in Stratford closed for reconstruction on March 31, 2007. The four plays in the notices were The Merchant of Venice, Coriolanus, Hamlet and Titus Andronicus, appearing in an inward spiral in the grid from the T of 11dn. Only Coriolanus, the last to be performed before the theatre closed, had to be highlighted. It was put on by the Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC). Answers which had to be changed to reveal these plays were Across: 19 show, 24 inset, 50 lotto; Down 4 romo, 6 tarot, 9 opus, 11 Athene, 25 tait, 33 bracer, 37 shirts, 41 salve. The quotation “We have shuffled off this mortal (coil)” from Hamlet’s soliloquy, hinted at what was being sought and how to find the plays in the grid.

Clue explanations

Conventions: * = anagram, < = reversal

No Extra word Answer Explanation
ACROSS
3 wonderful TRATT (T’ + TART) < & lit
8 England’s FORANE (FARE + NO)*
14 hates CAROL Two definitions
15 archaeologist OLPE Alternate letters in (s)O(i)L (s)P(i)E(s)
16 Villain’s TIMER REMIT <
17 emirs MAUTHER UT in HAREM*
18 studying AINU (UNITA – T) <
19 heroic SHOW S + HOW
20 Unusual LIES SEIL <
21 first SUTTEE SUIT – I + TEE
23 forgets AMIS Two definitions, reference Kingsley or Martin Amis
24 loves INSET IN + SET
25 expertly TRESS (s)TRESS, reference hair
27 data STORED DORSET*
28 obscenities ITERUM I MU(t)TER*
31 flighty PLIES Two definitions (PLIÉS)
36 faults INCLE INCLINE – IN
38 thought AURA Alternate letters in (w)A(s) U(n)R(e)A(l)
40 Haunting NASUTE TUNE’S* about A
42 intrepidly NOME ME (not you) trailing (not leading) NO (not yes)
44 sadly DUAL Homophone (DUEL)
46 month’s GALA (A + LAG) <
47 offside LUCIFER REF < after homophone (LUCY)
48 rogue LIANA LA about IAN
49&51 trusted CINE VERITÉ (I + NEVER) in CITE
50 Ascot LOTTO TT in LOO
52 leads REELS REE + (a)LS(o), reference female bird
DOWN
1   ECTASIS (ASCETICS – C)*
2   PATIENT TIE in PANT
3   TRINAL (ovatio)N in TRIAL
4   ROMO ROM + O
5   ALES AS about LE
6   TAROT TROT about A
7   TOMATO MAT (frost) in TOO
8   FLAMEN LAME for A in FAN
9   OPUS (SUP + O) <
10   RETIA AIR < about ET
11   ATHENE THEN in AE
12   NOESIS (NO + SIS) about E
13   EGRESS EG for P in PRESS
21   SERE SEE(m) about R
22   UTES Two definitions
25   TAIT Hidden
26   RENÉ RENEW – W
29   ULULATE LULU < + ATE
30   MEGARON (AGE + M) < + RON(e)
31   PAVLOV VIP < with OVAL* for I
32   LUNULE LUNK + ULE – K
33   BRACER BR about RACE
34   NA-DENE DEN in NAE
35   USURER SURE in UR
37   SHIRTS SHIRS about T(ailor)
39   AMICI ICI below AM; although recently taken over, ICI is in Chambers
41   SALVE Two definitions
43   E-FIT E + fit
45   LIFE F in LIE
46   GAOL GAJO – J + L
Back to 2008 menu