Cryptic Puzzle

Death Be Not Proud

Death Be Not Proud

By Tom Toce

When I have fears that I may cease to be, I usually do a crossword or a cryptic puzzle, so that I can feel my final moments haven’t been entirely wasted. To give you all a similar lift, this month’s puzzle is another sonnet.

The subject is buried treasure. I started with valuables you might find in a pirate’s treasure chest, then I expanded the list to include other things commonly buried or found underground. This describes the process I followed in developing the anagrams; it does not have anything to do with the order in which they appear in the poem, which is random.

There is one anagram per line, scrambled in either one or two consecutive words. The rest of the words in the poem are meaningless. Twelve of the answers are single words, the other two are two-word phrases. One of the single words is usually preceded by “the” when used in this context. There is one proper noun.

Thanks to Eric Klis, Bob Fink, and Jerry Miccolis for test-solving and editorial suggestions.


Previous Issue’s Puzzle—Six Outstanding Anagrams


1 BETRAYS—BET (“Lay odds”) + RAYS (“scintillas”)

5 TEASERS—Anagram of “Tessera”

9 RAISE—Homophone of RAZE (“destroy”)

10 ELABORATE—BORA (“Adriatic wind”) carrying ELATE (“uplift”)

11 ANTIPODES—ANODES (“Some conductors”) gathering TIP (“confidential information”)

12 GROUP—GROWNUP (“adult”)—WN (first letters of “why nobody’s”)

13 DALLIED—DIED (“petered out”) around ALL (“everyone”)

16 EXTORTS—Pun on EX-TORTS (“one-L class no longer”, i.e. first year law school class)

17 COURSES—Anagram of “sources”

19 SCOLDED—SCALDED (“cauterized”) with O (“nothing”) substituted for A (“anesthesia at first”)

22 LYDIA—Anagram of “lady I,” with a nod to Groucho Marx (and the songwriters E. Y. Harburg and Harold Arlen)

23  AUCTIONED—Anagram of “education”

26 AIRPLANES—Anagram of “Lear’s pain”

27 RETIE—RET. (“as many generals die”) + I + E (“intestate, on both sides”)

28 ENDOWED—END (“”the bottom line”) + OWED (“Outstanding”)

29 SINUSES—SIN (“evil”) + USES (“habits”)


1 BARMAID—BRAD alternating letters with AMI (“his friend from Paris”)

2 TAINT—Double definition

3 ADELPHI—Inside PHILADELPHIA (“the City of Brotherly Love”)

4 STEAD—Anagram of “dates”

5 TRANSFERS—First letters of “turn red as Nancy staffs Friday evening’s regularly scheduled”

6 AMONGST—AM (“the morning”) + G (“Grand “) + ST (“Street”)

7 ENAMOURED—Anagram of “demeanour”

8 SHERPAS—Anagram of “Phrases”

14 LAUNDERED—Anagram of “underlead”

15 DISDAINED—DIS (“put down”) + homophone of DEIGNED (“Agreed”)

17 COLLAGE—COLL. AGE (“late ‘Teens”)

18 SWALLOW—Double definition

20 OMICRON—O + MICRON (“little Greek”) & literally

21 DODGERS—Double definition, with a nod to Jackie Robinson

24 CASES—Double definition

25 NOTES—Anagram of “Tones” & literally

Outstanding Anagrams

Sweetener = SUCROSE from COURSES and SOURCES

Beginning = ONSET from NOTES and TONES

Full = SATED from STEAD and DATES





I had to make a major philosophical decision this time, namely whether to punish anyone who didn’t get Adelphi, a Long Island university of 7,859 students, named a 2010 Best College in the Northeast by The Princeton Review and ranked #146 among national universities by U. S. News and World Report. Okay, it’s not as well known as Hogwarts, but it’s not an obscure school. The crossing letters gave you A _ E _ P _ I, and the wordplay was “in the City of Brotherly Love,” so I “punished” Deb Edwards by leaving her off this issue’s list. It’s a tight ship we run around here, Deb.

Jina and Michael Accardo, Steve Alpert, Anthony Amodeo, Dean Apps, Bob Campbell, Lois Cappellano, Laura Cremerius, Todd Dashoff, Mick Diede, Bob Fink, Mendy Friedman, Phil Gollance, Pete Hepokoski, Michael S. James, Eric Klis, Paul Kolell, Mike Kosciuk, Ken Kudrak, James R. Lamenzo, Ben Lynch, Dave McGarry, Jerry Miccolis, Jim Muza, David and Corinne Promislow, Susan Schaefer, Bill Scott, Doug Szper, Zig Swistunowicz, T.O.C.E. (Sean Donohoe and Josh DenHartog), Jon Turnes.

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