The Floo Network
Cryptic Clues Crypt
"Puzzles to ponder by Mike Weinstein"

Each of the following ten clues refers to a person, place, or thing in the Harry Potter universe. The clues are the type that you would find in a British crossword puzzle (also known as a cryptic crossword in the U.S.).

A cryptic clue has two distinct parts, each of which refers to the answer. Usually, one part is a definition or description of the answer, while the other forms the word using wordplay. The two parts will not overlap, either may come first, and the punctuation in the clue is not always helpful for finding the dividing point.

For instance, the answer to Greek infuriates dentists (8) would be GRANGERS. "Dentists" describes the Grangers, while their name is formed by combining GR (an abbreviation for "Greek") with the word ANGERS ("infuriates"). The numeral in parentheses at the end of the clue tells you the number of letters in the answer.

Here are some more examples. Messenger found within paper rolls (5) is a clue referring to ERROL, the Weasleys’ "messenger." The letters of his name are "found within" the phrase "papER ROLls." A dog in metal container is a knight in armor (7) is cluing CADOGAN, who is "a knight in armor," and whose name is formed by placing the letters of A DOG within the word CAN ("metal container"): C(ADOG)AN. And You know who loved Mort in a crazy way? (9) signifies VOLDEMORT, a.k.a. "you know who," which is obtained by moving the letters of "loved Mort" around "in a crazy way" (an anagram). Other common wordplay techniques include deleting letters in one word to make another, writing words backwards, homophones, and puns.

Occasionally, both parts of the clue will be definitions of the answer. For instance, Spell "grace" (5) would refer to CHARM (a type of "spell," but also a synonym for "grace"), while Rips up a phoenix’s salve (5) is TEARS (pronounced two different ways).

So… sharpen your pencils, sharpen your wits, and see if you can decipher these cryptic clues!

ANSWERS KEY:
| = dividing point between two parts of clue
anag. = anagram
cont. = contains
double def. = double definition
homoph. = homophone
rev. = reverse


November 2006

CLUES:
1.  Nick, a staff member. (5)
2.  Paris's small mix-up became larger source of leaks. (9)
3.  Turn over what's inside body of lamb, bad guy! (6)
4.  James, for example, is right between Mum and gold; the German brings up the rear. (8)
5.  Brown is kind of purple. (8)
6.  Flame consumes crazy Zen teacher. (7)
7.  School band's instrument is unusual, almost strange. (10)
8.  Conceals knowledge of Spanish inside charming professor. (8)
9.  Dancing bear reportedly fourth in order, originally. (9)
10.  The Weasley twins used to make omelets. (7)


ANSWERS: November 2006

1. Nick, | a staff member. (5) FILCH {double def.}
2. Paris's small mix-up became larger | source of leaks. (9) PETTIGREW {anag.(petit) + grew}
3. Turn over what's inside body of lamb, | bad guy! (6) MALFOY {rev.(bodY OF LAMb)}
4. James, for example, i|s right between Mum and gold; the German brings up the rear. (8) MARAUDER {Ma + r. + Au + der}
5. Brown i|s kind of purple. (8) LAVENDER {double def.}
6. Flame consumes crazy Zen | teacher. (7) FIRENZE {fire cont. anag.(Zen)}
7. School | band's instrument is unusual, almost strange. (10) DURMSTRANG {anag.(drum) + strange – e}
8. Conceals knowledge | of Spanish inside charming professor. (8) FIDELIUS {Filius cont. de}
9. Dancing bear reportedly fourth | in order, originally. (9) ABERFORTH {anag.(bear) + homoph.(fourth)}
10. The Weasley twins | used to make omelets. (7) BEATERS {double def.}

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October 2006

CLUES:
1. Girl born in August with bit of Nebraskan gold. (7)
2. Fly, oh Dragon, terrible friend of thieves and plunderers! (4,2,5)
3. Revise X-Files fic: “Eli and the Formula for Success.” (5,7)
4. The final word is found in his cards. (4)
5. Slytherin wimp. (5)
6. Choo-choo carries a flier. (5)
7. I got expelled from her biology class. (9)
8. Len: evil, confused, forgetful. (7)
9. Herb's small centaur is after Remus's adoptive mother. (9)
10. Mutes arrive in disarray – drunk, to tell the truth. (11)

ANSWERS: October 2006

1. Girl born in August with bit of Nebraskan | gold. (7) GALLEON {gal + Leo + N}
2. Fly, oh Dragon, terrible | friend of thieves and plunderers! (4,2,5) HAND OF GLORY {anag.(fly oh dragon)}
3. Revise X-Files fic: “Eli a|nd the Formula for Success.” (5,7) FELIX FELICIS {anag.(X-Files fic Eli)}
4. The final word | is found in his cards. (4) SCAR {hiS CARds}
5. Slytherin | wimp. (5) PANSY {double def.}
6. Choo-choo carries | a flier. (5) HOOCH {cHOO-CHoo}
7. I got expelled from her biology | class. (9) HERBOLOGY {her + biology – I}
8. Len: evil, confused, | forgetful. (7) NEVILLE {anag.(Len evil)}
9. Herb|'s small centaur is after Remus's adoptive mother. (9) WOLFSBANE {wolf + S. + Bane}
10. Mutes arrive in disarray –| drunk, to tell the truth. (11) VERITASERUM {anag.(mutes arrive)}

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September 2006

Clues:
1. A witch's vinegar mixture. (7)
2. Evil Evans's symbol. (4, 4)
3. Sticks with the odds of – what? Nudes? (5)
4. The decapitated astral horse? (8)
5. Lacking energy, American scrambled the head chopper.
6. Black woman scans air dubiously. (8)
7. Former agent is crazy, I said. (3-3)
8. Grab a standard portion for a dark wizard. (8)
9. Death Eater's chime at Spinner's End, number nine. (9)
10. Bud, a teacher. (6)

ANSWERS: September 2006

1. A witch|'s vinegar mixture. (7) GINEVRA {anag.(vinegar)}
2. Evil Evans|'s symbol. (4, 4) DARK MARK {double def.}
3. Sticks wi|th the odds of – what?  Nudes? (5) WANDS {WhAt NuDeS}
4. The decapitated astral | horse? (8) THESTRAL {the + astral – a}
5. Lacking energy, American scrambled | the head chopper. (7) MACNAIR {anag.(American – E)}
6. Black woman | scans air dubiously. (8) NARCISSA {anag.(scans air)}
7. Former agent i|s crazy, I said. (3-3) MAD-EYE {mad + homoph.(I)}
8. Grab a standard portion f|or a dark wizard. (8) RABASTAN {gRAB A STANdard}
9. Death Eater|'s chime at Spinner's End, number nine. (9) BELLATRIX {bell + at + r + IX}
10. Bud, | a teacher. (6) SPROUT {double def.}

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August 2006
Clues:

1. Instructor: "Two minus one, plus ‘y,’ plus ‘x.’" (8)
2. Poe's cipher, broken, is found in a hall. (10)
3. Tree surrounds field and Spanish professor. (9)
4. "My turtle's missing two heads!" she cries. (6)
5. Servant sounds like an animal. (8)
6. Student in the Middle East. (6)
7. Flies quickly let go of nut's companion. (8)
8. Men erupt terribly, like a rhino. (8)
9. Homer opera features a downtrodden woman. (6)
10. Following Di and unending French wine, country looks to the future. (10)

Answers: August 2006

1. Instructor:| "Two minus one, plus ‘y,’ plus ‘x.’" (8) TWYCROSS {two – o + y + cross}
2. Poe's cipher, broken, i|s found in a hall. (10) PROPHECIES {anag.(Poe's cipher)}
3. Tree surrounds field and Spanish | professor. (9) TRELAWNEY {(tree cont. lawn) + y}
4. "My turtle's missing two heads!" | she cries. (6) MYRTLE {my + turtle – tu}
5. Servant | sounds like an animal. (8) KREACHER {homoph.(creature)}
6. Student | in the Middle East. (6) JORDAN {double def.}
7. Flies quickly | let go of nut's companion. (8) FIREBOLT {fire + bolt}
8. Men erupt terribly, | like a rhino. (8) ERUMPENT {anag.(men erupt)}
9. Homer opera features | a downtrodden woman. (6) MEROPE {hoMER OPEra}
10. Following Di and unending French wine, country | looks to the future. (10) DIVINATION {Di + vin – n + nation}

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July 2006
Clues:
1. The servant's cry of despair consumes poor Mort. (8)
2. Look in well-made, antique drawer. (4)
3. Head of house, or central argument for life insurance. (7)
4. Army with incomplete ideas about cinema. (5,6)
5. "E tu, Sir Cramp?" Crazy laughter ensues from this. (11)
6. Like Sirius, Gus is after creature with a part missing. (8)
7. Weasley was victorious – twice! (3-3)
8. "Love, endless love with sheep," reflected an old pureblood. (7)
9. Shipmates see nothing, heard a hurtful word. (6)
10. Wizard obsession: pound trench. (9)

Answers:
1. The servant|'s cry of despair consumes poor Mort. (8) WORMTAIL {wail cont. anag.(Mort)}
2. Look in well-made, antique | drawer. (4) DEAN {well-maDE ANtique}
3. Head of house, or central argument f|or life insurance. (7) HORCRUX {h + or + crux}
4. Army wi|th incomplete ideas about cinema. (5,6) DEATH EATERS {(ideas – i) cont. theater}
5. "E tu, Sir Cramp?" Crazy | laughter ensues from this. (11) RICTUSEMPRA {anag.(e tu sir cramp)}
6. Like Sirius, | Gus is after creature with a part missing. (8) ANIMAGUS {animal – l + Gus}
7. Weasley | was victorious – twice! (3-3) WON-WON {double def.}
8. "Love, endless love with sheep," reflected | an old pureblood. (7) MARVOLO {rev.(0 + love – e + ram)}
9. Shipmates see nothing, heard | a hurtful word. (6) CRUCIO {homoph.(crew + see + 0)}
10. Wizard obsession: | pound trench. (9) QUIDDITCH {quid + ditch}

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June 2006
Clues:
1. Soldier ants pound Army One underwater? (5,5)
2. Mixed up a bank after first and last lockup. (7)
3. Great man hides in unusual bush. (5)
4. Game the Potions Master left unfinished. (4)
5. Peeves, in confusion, thought "Basin!" (8)
6. Small seat in church organization. (4)
7. Customer, America will protect you. (8)
8. Student put us to shame, we hear. (6)
9. A stone grizzly captures – and turns over – the great and powerful wizard. (6)
10. Character found in Japan. (5)

Answers:
1. Soldier ants pound | Army One underwater? (5,5) GIANT SQUID {G.I. + ants + quid}
2. Mixed up a bank after first and last | lockup. (7) AZKABAN {A + Z + anag.(a bank)}
3. Great man | hides in unusual bush. (5) ALBUS {unusuAL BUSh}
4. Game | the Potions Master left unfinished. (4) SNAP {Snape – e}
5. Peeves, in confusion,| thought "Basin!" (8) PENSIEVE {anag.(Peeves in)}
6. Small seat in church | organization. (4) S.P.E.W. {S. + pew}
7. Customer, America | will protect you. (8) PATRONUS {patron + U.S.}
8. Student | put us to shame, we hear. (6) SEAMUS {homoph.(shame us)}
9. A stone | grizzly captures – and turns over – the great and powerful wizard. (6) BEZOAR {bear cont. rev.(Oz)}
10. Character | found in Japan. (5) KAPPA {double def.}

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May 2006
Clues:
1. Incomplete Inferi scrambled right, like a wolf. (6)
2. Writer is found in tranquil libraries. (5)
3. Familiar actor Tom is after criminals. (11)
4. Wizard is silent first, then endlessly led two notes. (10)
5. I solve a strange fragment in an elevator. (7)
6. Slytherin oaf lives in state of denuded sheep. (8)
7. Thin man in the woods. (5)
8. Heartless son with headless hag is sought. (6)
9. Change stunk badly. (5)
10. Pest from a city in Alaska, I hear. (5)

Answers:
1. Incomplete Inferi scrambled right,| like a wolf. (6) FENRIR {anag.(Inferi – i) + r.}
2. Writer | is found in tranquil libraries. (5) QUILL {tranQUIL Libraries}
3. Familiar | actor Tom is after criminals. (11) CROOKSHANKS {crooks + Hanks}
4. Wizard i|s silent first, then endlessly led two notes. (10) DUMBLEDORE {dumb + led – d + do + re}
5. I solve a strange | fragment in an elevator. (7) LEVIOSA {anag.(I solve a)}
6. Slytherin | oaf lives in state of denuded sheep. (8) SLUGHORN {shorn cont. lug}
7. Thin | man in the woods. (5) GAUNT {double def.}
8. Heartless son with headless hag | is sought. (6) SNITCH {son – o + witch – w}
9. Change | stunk badly. (5) KNUTS {rev.(stunk)}
10. Pest fr|om a city in Alaska, I hear. (5) GNOME {homoph.(Nome)}

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April 2006
Clues:
1. Drive half-Prince with old warrior. (6)
2. In wigwam or tent, I attain an elixir. (10)
3. Kisser of French teacher. (8)
4. Washington's capital in Kentucky? Help! (5)
5. Arboreal creature put vehicle in crazy kind of room? (10)
6. Ghost moving from here to there. (10)
7. Psychopath changin' form for an audience. (6)
8. He cleans before beginning of year – do bees? (5)
9. First three to access Jupiter's moon will bring me something. (5)
10. Gryffindor sinned the wrong way. (6)

Answers:
1. Drive | half-Prince with old warrior. (6) PRIVET {Pri + vet}
2. In wigwam or tent, I attain | an elixir. (10) AMORTENTIA {wigwAM OR TENT I Attain}
3. Kisser | of French teacher. (8) DEMENTOR {de + mentor}
4. Washington's capital in Kentucky? | Help! (5) WINKY {W + in + KY}
5. Arboreal creature | put vehicle in crazy kind of room? (10) BOWTRUCKLE {anag.(elbow) cont. truck}
6. Ghost | moving from here to there. (10) APPARITION {double def.}
7. Psychopath | changin' form for an audience. (6) MORFIN {homoph.(morphin')}
8. He cleans | before beginning of year – do bees? (5) DOBBY {do + bb + y}
9. First three to access Jupiter's moon | will bring me something. (5) ACCIO {acc + Io}
10. Gryffindor | sinned the wrong way. (6) DENNIS {rev.(sinned)}

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March 2006
Clues:
1. Hedwig inside her volatile envelope. (6)
2. Teacher’s sin is bad art. (8)
3. Drink the "French Chaser" after this thing. (7)
4. Within Florida resides stupid old wizard. (6)
5. "Bodies in motion," conclude I. (6)
6. Drunken erotic man-creature. (9)
7. Oinkers replace me with Weasley, who has horns. (6)
8. We invert flower, get a howler. (8)
9. Penny Gold, head of Research, lives in the forest. (7)
10. "A champion," said Rick to the audience. (6)

Answers:
1. Hedwig inside her | volatile envelope. (6) HOWLER {her cont. owl}
2. Teacher|’s sin is bad art. (8) SINISTRA {sin + is + rev.(art)}
3. Drink the "French | Chaser" after this thing. (7) QUAFFLE {quaff + le}
4. Within Florida resides stupid | old wizard. (6) FLAMEL {FL cont. lame}
5. "Bodies in motion," | conclude I. (6) INFERI {infer + I}
6. Drunken erotic man-|creature. (9) MANTICORE {anag.(erotic man)}
7. Oinkers replace me with Weasley, | who has horns. (6) PRONGS {pigs, replace I with Ron}
8. We invert flower, g|et a howler. (8) WEREWOLF {we + rev.(flower)}
9. Penny Gold, head of Research, | lives in the forest. (7) CENTAUR {cent + Au + R}
10. "A champion," | said Rick to the audience. (6) CEDRIC {homoph.(said Rick)}

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February 2006
Clues:
1. Girl's third note, a smart one. (8)
2. Middle Eastern jazz singer is a squib. (8)
3. Toad hides inside museum bridgework. (8)
4. No card turned over by prefect. (5)
5. Siblings store time in buckets. (6)
6. Silver farmer's tool. (6)
7. Witty people crave lawns, strangely. (10)
8. Headless person with cold seeks gold. (7)
9. Muggle is un-clever, non? (5,6)
10. Athlete sounds like a morsel! (4)

Answers:
1. Girl's third note, a | smart one. (8) HERMIONE {her + mi + one}
2. Middle Eastern jazz singer | is a squib. (8) ARABELLA {Arab + Ella [Fitzgerald]}
3. Toad | hides inside museum bridgework. (8) UMBRIDGE {museUM BRIDGEwork}
4. No card turned over b|y prefect. (5) DRACO {rev.(0 + card)}
5. Siblings | store time in buckets. (6) PATILS {pails cont. t}
6. Silver | farmer's tool. (6) SICKLE {double def.}
7. Witty people | crave lawns, strangely. (10) RAVENCLAWS {anag.(crave lawns)}
8. Headless person with cold | seeks gold. (7) NIFFLER {sniffler – s}
9. Muggle i|s un-clever, non? (5,6) UNCLE VERNON {unclever + non}
10. Athlete | sounds like a morsel! (4) KRUM {homoph.(crumb)}

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