The M&G's cryptic crossword

Welcome to the Mail & Guardian’s new cryptic crossword. Compiled by Professor George Euvrard of Rhodes University, it has been piloted in Grocotts Mail for the past 18 months as the first South Africanised cryptic crossword. The perspective is proudly South African, decolonised, and full of local references and words.

Although it’s still in the classic English cryptic crossword tradition, forget “artist” being “RA” (Royal Academy) or a “river” being “Exe”. Here you will need to delve into your Dictionary of South African English (free online at dsae.co.za) to confirm bhuti and windgat, and to take out your South African atlas to check the spelling of Nossob!

The solutions will appear in the next M&G, but in the meantime you can also come here to see explanations of each solution (at the right time), as well as engage with other solvers and the compiler on particular clues, solutions and related crossword matters.

JDE 137

Across

1. SUDOKU: With regular luck, you and me are brought back to hold party game (6)

(LUCK YOU + US) backwards, and round DO

4. FOCACCIA: Recall of spies hiding account for Italian fare (8)

OF backwards + C (ACC) IA

9. YEARNS: Longs for unknown makes (6)

Y + EARNS

10. HUMOURED: Indulged in wit with journalist (8)

HUMOUR + ED

12. EGRESSES: Goes backwards, topless, and exits (8)

REGRESSES

13. STRAIN: Start to sing school tune (6)

S + TRAIN

15. ABBREVIATION: Vote AirBnB ‘A1’ in circulation digest (12)

vote airbnb ai anag

18. CHIMNEY SWEEP: Vents on cry for outdated job (12)

CHIMNEYS + WEEP

21. COUPLE: Join the French Revolution initially (6)

LE after COUP

22. PLANKTON: Whale - food for one hundred on board (8)

TON after PLANK

24. NEONATAL: Maimane on a talk-show describes baby (8)

maimaNE ON A TALkcontainment

25. CANNOT: Am unable to get woman into bed (6)

C (ANN) OT

26. SPACE BAR: Press here to break out-of-this-world pub (5,3)

SPACE + BAR

27. ASTERN: A tough behind (6)

A + STERN

Down

1. STYWE PAP: Braai food for launch of S.A. Pew (Pty) (5,3)

sa pew pty anag

2. DIATRIBE: Tirade that spews forth about one book? (8)

tirade anag, about 1B

3. KINGSLEY HOLGATE: Explorer transforms into eggshell yak (8,7)

eggshell yak anag

5. ONUS: Responsibility rests upon our shoulders (4)

ON US

6. A MONTH OF SUNDAYS: May connect to river for a long time (1,5,2,7)

A MONTH + OF + SUNDAYS

7. CEREAL: Sustenance realist include Rice Krispies, for example (6)

sustenanCE REAListcontainment

8. ARDENT: Dedicated study into craftsmanship (6)

AR (DEN) T

11. MEDIUMS: Die tragically, caught up by Mother’s spiritualists (7)

M (die anag) UMS

14. OTHELLO: Play outrageously at first with the lines on love (7)

O + THE + LL + O

16. SENTENCE: Dramatic Scene 10: Judgement! (8)

scene ten anag

17. UPINGTON: Place for toning up work-out (8)

toning up anag

19. SCENTS: Small change in ship smells (6)

S (CENT) S

20. AURORA: A sunroom regularly roasts top of a night light (6)

A + SUNROOM + R + A

23. VALA: Virginia extremists bring Left to a close (4)

VA + L + A

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