Listener Crossword 4037: Solution Notes

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S by Hedge-sparrow

Puzzle explanation

The puzzle commemorated the 200th anniversary year of the birth of Charles Darwin in 1809, containing a number of references to Darwin’s scientific voyages and his writings on evolution. Unclued entries were: evolution, Galapagos and Darwin. Four Down entries, sapota, bottle, gammon, attend, were “evolved” (jumbled) prior to entry. Extra letters from Across clues spelt “Survival of the Fittest”, suggesting that the ten letters of “the fittest” survived rather than the other letters which clashed with them. Extra letters in all but the last six Down clues spelt “The Voyage of the”, completed by “Beagle”, to be highlighted in the grid. Replacement of DARWIN by PPPAAA (the last six additional letters) gives a central block to be highlighted, portraying a step-by-step “evolution” from APE to MAN. The title referred to the key part of the title of Darwin’s seminal work: “Origin of Species”.

Clue explanations

Conventions: * = anagram, < = reversal

No Extra
Letter
Answer Explanation
ACROSS
1   EVOLUTION Unclued
11 S ONST SON + ST
13 U EAGLE LEAGUE *
14 R LEI BUTLER – BUT + I’
15 V PLAINER LAV in PINE + R
17 I COMMA COMI(c) + M(utter) + A
18 V DESTINE D + VEST + IN + E
19 A RANI RAN + IA
20 L BAATHISTS (THEISTS – (cr)E(ed)) after BAAL
21 O DAMN Two definitions (DAMON)
24 F AORTIC A + FORTNIGHT – NIGHT + IC
27 T GROWTH ROWTH after GT
30 H ADDS A + DD + HS
32 E IRONSMITH (SMITE + H) after IRON
35 F SPAN (P + A + N) after SF
37 I CONDEMN DI in CONMEN *
39 T NACRE NET about (C + R(are))
40 T ENSIGNS NESTING * + S
41 E OAR ORE about (underse)A
43 S TEETH T(ories) in SHEET <
44 T ADAR DART after A
45   GALAPAGOS Unclued
DOWN
1 T ENLARD TEN + L(eave) + A(s) + R(aunchy) + D(rama)
2 H VIA (A + HIV) <
3 E ONION ONE + ICON – C(horister)
4 V LOOMING (O + L) < + MOVING, M one place lower
5   SAPOTA SAP + O’ + TA(p)
6   BOTTLE TT in BOLE
7 O GALL GOAL + L
8 Y AGNISED DESTINY < – T under AG
9 A GLENTED TEAD under (GEN about L)
10 G HERESY GHEBRE – B + S(ill)Y
12 E NUMB (E) NUMBE(r)
16 O ARK OAR + K
18   DARWIN Unclued
22 F APRONED FA + PRONE + D
23 T MOONSET MOT + ONSET
25 H CASCARA CASA about CHAR
26 E NICELY NICE + ELY
28   GAMMON G + AMMON
29   ATTEND AT + T’ + END
31 P STAFFS STAFF + PS
33 P SAG GASP <
34 P HA-HA PAH after (matc)H + A
36 A PRONG PRO + NAG
38 A DIVE DIVA + E
42 A ADO Alternate letters, reversed
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