"Alter, fraudulently that is, earlier 8th avenue article. Take a treat

at such time as lawyer is point-first - the rest is poultry.

Reader! Why, we hear accounts' core again lacks a profit!

Permutation, without morals first, hurts standing."


Hint 1:

It seems the first line is the weakest part of the puzzle, so I will offer a little extra direction. The whole first line is a single clue, (4,1,6). The definition is a little loose, and is better taken as a confirmation of the solution rather than an alternate route towards it. Do not pay too much attention to the punctuation. Just because the words "fraudulently that is" appear within the same subordinate clause as written in the clue, it does not mean that they fit together in the solution. In fact, "alter fraudulently" gives one part of the solution and "that is" gives another. Together they make a single word.

Hint 2:

"Alter fraudulently" isn't "doctor", but it is another profession.

  • $\begingroup$ Wow, this is all one cryptic clue? Hopefully there's a definition. $\endgroup$
    – Deusovi
    May 29 '16 at 18:43
  • $\begingroup$ @Deusovi there are several... i'll leave a hint breaking it up if no one gets it first $\endgroup$ May 29 '16 at 18:45
  • $\begingroup$ Don't make any hints just yet - give it some time. I'm typically pretty good at cryptics, so I'll try to get some of these. $\endgroup$
    – Deusovi
    May 29 '16 at 18:46
  • $\begingroup$ (By the way, welcome to Puzzling.SE, and great puzzle!) $\endgroup$
    – Deusovi
    May 29 '16 at 18:46
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @Deusovi - each component has a definition adjacent to it. The first may be a little loose by US standards, but only a little. $\endgroup$ May 29 '16 at 19:05

The full message is...



COOK + I.E., with H + AVE. + A placed earlier
[-la]W[-yer] + HEN
Y + [-acc]OU[-nts]

More detailed explanation:

"Alter, fraudulently that is, earlier 8th avenue article. Take a treat...

Alter fraudulently is COOK; "that is" is I.E., and then earlier we add the 8th letter (H) plus avenue (AVE) and an article (A) to get [H+AVE + A + COOK+IE]. The definition is "Take a treat".

...at such time as lawyer is point-first - the rest is poultry.

WHEN: The "point" of "lawyer" could be the WY in the middle, then "first" could tell us to take the first of the two. W + HEN (the rest is poultry), def "at such time as"? Not quite sure if I've interpreted it correctly though.

Reader! Why, we hear accounts' core...

YOU ( "Y", heard, plus accOUnts: def "reader")

...again lacks a profit!

GAIN (AGAIN, lacking A: def "profit")

Permutation, without morals first, hurts standing."

REPUTATION (anagram of PERmUTATION: def "standing")

  • $\begingroup$ "accounts' core" - right first time, "why, we hear" - right, "morals first" - right. Wrong on alter, fraudulently and permutation... nice start. $\endgroup$ May 29 '16 at 19:01
  • $\begingroup$ doing well so far... wrong with point. Hint: lawyer has two opposing points. $\endgroup$ May 29 '16 at 19:14
  • $\begingroup$ Words 1 and 3 are wrong. A little general knowledge is needed, but it's linguistic in nature, not geographical. $\endgroup$ May 29 '16 at 19:36
  • $\begingroup$ @DeveloperInDevelopment: HANDLE is wrong? Huh, I was fairly sure about that one. $\endgroup$
    – Deusovi
    May 29 '16 at 19:37
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @Deusovi It looks as if you pretty much have this. Maybe "take" is in the sense of being "on the take" leading to the word "payoff" or something like it. $\endgroup$ May 30 '16 at 9:37

See Desuovi's answer for the majority of the work. I'm concentrating on the first line only here.

From the hint...

"alter fraudulently" is a profession (not doctor), so how about cook?


"that is" is another way of putting the Latin abbreviation i.e.

so together we have...


So now take a treat, making (4,1,6)...




  • $\begingroup$ Correct! You mention Desuovi's work on the answer, so I will leave it to the two of you to decide which one wants the credit. I'll accept whichever answer is edited to contain the complete solution. Currently "8th avenue article" and the "lawyer" in line 2 are unexplained. $\endgroup$ May 31 '16 at 23:34
  • $\begingroup$ Ah, I thought COOK was right but I couldn't figure out how it would fit with the rest. $\endgroup$
    – Deusovi
    Jun 1 '16 at 0:08
  • $\begingroup$ (I've figured the rest out. I'll edit it in.) $\endgroup$
    – Deusovi
    Jun 1 '16 at 0:08

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