Clued In (Blogs)

Clued In #227 | With keenness, make short work of this cryptic clue

Mihir Balantrapu  |  21 January 2021

Hey there, and welcome back to Clued In!

For as long as human beings exist in a society, there will be economics. Which makes it so important that we understand how it works. In the long run as well as the short.


The Hindu Cryptic #13150 | Gridman | 10 Across

CLUE:  Economist endlessly goes over old time that is critical (7)

Clue types: General knowledge, deletion, containment, abbreviation

Definition: critical


Clue explained:

Here, we need a 7-letter word meaning ‘critical’.

How do we know that ‘critical’ is the definition? Well, initially, we wouldn’t know for sure. But since we know that the definition is to be found at either end of the clue, we can assume to begin with, before we go on to build our certainty by checking out the rest of the clue for likely wordplay elements that fit. Sort of like if you were to pick a suspect from a police line-up and then throw allegations at them to see what sticks.

An abbreviation for ‘old’ is O.

An abbreviation for ‘time’ is T.

‘Goes over’ is a containment indicator that suggests that O and T are to be enveloped by something or someone...

A little bit of general knowledge here comes to our help. If you have heard of the great English ‘economist’ John Maynard KEYNES, who devised macroeconomic principles that governments still use in their policymaking to this day. Of course, Gridman says ‘economist endlessly’, which means he wants us to remove the last letter of KEYNES and be left with KEYNE.

Now, if we let KEYNE go ‘over’ or envelop O and T, we could possibly spell out KEYNOTE, which means “important” and is a very likely 7-letter synonym for ‘critical’!


Was the above clue fun to solve? Did you get a kick out of understanding how to work out the answer to a cryptic crossword clue? Did you enjoy being given a random sentence that ultimately leads to a completely unexpected but totally decipherable answer? Do you feel like you could use some help to guide you towards the answer for each of the 20-30 clues that usually bamboozle you in each puzzle? Well, look no further!

Ok, look just a little further. Because, every Sunday, The Hindu Crossword Plus will be posting a new The Hindu Cryptic puzzle with annotations for each clue! Go ahead and bookmark that link and play the latest puzzle.

Each annotation will give you helping hints and hold your hand as we work out the answer together. If you liked the long-winded explanation to the above clue, then you will surely enjoy the crisper versions we give you in The Hindu Cryptic on Sunday puzzles, when you click the button ‘Reveal’ and then ‘Show a hint’.

And guess what, The Hindu Cryptic on Sunday is absolutely free! All you have to do is sign up to play.

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