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Puzzle #86 July 2008  "Sphairistike"

Instructions: Guess the words defined by the cryptic clues (answers vary in length from four to eleven letters, and six are capitalized) then enter them in the grid one after another in the same order as their clues, starting in the upper left corner. Across words that don't end at the right continue on the next row, and down words that don't end at the bottom continue in the next column. Eleven across words and ten down words won't fit in the grid unless one of their letters is omitted. Those twenty-one letters, taken in order as they occur in across and down words, spell a seven-word message related to the mystery entry. Thanks to Kevin Wald for test-solving and editing this puzzle. (If you are having trouble printing these puzzles, you can download an Adobe Acrobat version of the puzzle and grid). [Want to see some hints?]

Across

  1. Company list and a whorl of petals
  2. Talk and wine lead to understanding
  3. Prepare report of theft
  4. One in screen mix-up is disingenuous
  5. Mildewed kernel put in granary for one who cultivates
  6. Agent he negotiated with at that time
  7. Gather in celebration after 1st of April
  8. Wicked nun has pull
  9. No tripe in a stew; meat, maybe
  10. Mystery entry
  11. Note the Italian number for a town in Lombardia
  12. Gathers about a hundred summaries
  13. Angry after initially provoking robber
  14. Little boy in front advances
  15. Strike, giving up pawn for rook in play session
  16. Sound out number and letter
  17. Never moving without starting to change direction
  18. No sire in ancestry is respectable
  19. Concerning strategy to initially reattach by surgery
  20. Rolling chant about frayed rug
  21. All astronauts about to go on

Down

  1. I cannot wantonly embrace
  2. Column is inside wall, in effect
  3. Light touch when making up stories, essentially
  4. Turf division occurs after start of season
  5. Abrupt split around road
  6. Note metal top of android's eye membrane
  7. Writer got up as a mathematical physicist
  8. Verne mot about captain of Nautilus
  9. Start living in color for a thrill
  10. Actress taking off ring and clothes
  11. Triple running energy for tortoise, perhaps
  12. Petition's opening paragraph is originally misworded to a great extent
  13. Ten real changes that last forever
  14. Finally hear a note that's uncommon
  15. Cuevas rudely abandons us in grotto
  16. Long Ridge's reference framework
  17. Echoing "adios" when one goes for a drink
  18. And peel off to exit aircraft
  19. Finish covering of old platform
  20. Fall back . . . run . . . pass
  21. Oldster exchanges one for small hearing device, maybe
  22. Endlessly hopeful for medication
  23. Brazen and unwise to eliminate Republican