Listener Crossword 4017: Solution Notes

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A Knotty Problem by Homer

Puzzle explanation

Answers affected by thematic treatment were Across: 21 ho(b)d(a)yi(n)g 23 sy(n)ap(s)e; Down: 1 pi(l)ow 2 i(c)e 3 Sh(e)rpa 4 e(n)sate 5 s(c)otomia 6 uro(p)ods 7 lo(r)cha 8 cam(e)o 9 tor(t)feasor 10 r(i)de shotgun 11 r(e)edy 14 g(i)gman 15 (s)allet 25 yeoman(l)y 29 abce(e) 30 sarg(o)s 31 tri(p)le 32 ado(r)n 37 pud(s)y 40 (e)an. The theme was Gretna Green marriages. ELOPERS, leaving ENGLAND behind, travel across the border to Scotland, where “licence” (row 2), “priest” (row 3) and “banns” (row 6) are not required, and where (according to Brewer’s Dictionary of Phrase & Fable) “toll-keepers” could perform marriage ceremonies. “Gretna”, just across the border, was to be highlighted in green.

Clue explanations

Conventions: * = anagram, < = reversal

No Answer Explanation
ACROSS
1 PEISE E in PISÉ
5 SOUL-SCOT (SOU + LOT) about S(ession) + C(lerk) & lit
12 ROBALO (O + LABOR) <
13 ODORATE (DOAT in OE) about R
16 UP TO U + P + homophone (2)
17 DOH Two definitions; reference Homer Simpson
18 GOLF (LOFT – T) * after (GREEN – REEN) & lit
19 OSSA Hidden
20 AMPLE SAMPLE – S
21 HOBDAYING HOPING, OP replaced by (OB + DAY)
23 SYNAPSE SYE about NAPS
24 MONETARY UNITS SAUNTER INTO MY *
27 EGRET EG + RE + T (160); see “aigrette” and 33’s answer
31 TIAR (Llanell)I in TAR (sailor)
33 TUFT FT after TU; a “somebody” is an importanrt person
35 WEB B(lubber) after WE
36 MART MARK, K to (spendthrif)T & lit
38 CARIBOU (A + RIB) in CO(g) + U(ndies); rein = reindeer
39 REDCAP (READ – A) + CAP (Balmoral) & lit
41 SPOOKERY (E + PORK + SOY) *
42 SENVY N(ippy) + V(egetable) in SEY & lit
DOWN
1 PILOW I in PLOW (US version of “plough”)
2 ICE (IE + C) * & lit
3 SHERPA HE in (ex)P(lo)R(er)S < + A(nnapurna) & lit
4 ENSATE ENS + ATE; twist = eat
5 SCOTOMIA (O(ld) + M(alt)) in SCOTIA (thematic reference)
6 UROPODS Composite anagram: U + JU(neberries) + answer → SOUP DU JOUR
7 LORCHA R in LOCH (Tay) + A
8 CAMEO CAME + O
9 TORTFEASOR ROOFER THAT’S * – H
10 RIDE SHOTGUN TO HIRE GUNS * & lit
11 REEDY REMEDY – M
14 GIGMAN NAM(e) < after GIG
15 SALLET ALLE(y) in ST
19 OHMMETERS (SOME + M(easure) + E(lectrical) + R + TH(ese)) * & lit
22 DELETE D + E + T in LEE
25 YEOMANLY YE + OMAN + L + Y
26 KNEIPE Composite anagram: answer + NERD – D → INNKEEPER & lit
28 TWEAK (sa)W in TEAK
29 ABCEE m(A)y(B)e C(r)E(w)E & lit
30 SARGOS Alternate letters
31 TRIPLE TR + I’ + PL + E(uro); reference bell-ringing
32 ADORN PROMENADE * – (E + MEP) *
34 FIDO F + “I DO”
37 PUDSY PU + DAY, S for A
40 EAN Hidden
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