jackkt (jackkt) wrote in times_xwd_times,
jackkt
jackkt
times_xwd_times

Times Cryptic 26636

I completed this in 33 minutes so it would rank among the easier puzzles of recent days but for the fact that I had one careless error. There are a couple of words or meanings bordering on the obscure but the wordplay was generally helpful.

As usual definitions are underlined in bold italics, {deletions are in curly brackets} and [anagrinds, containment, reversal and other indicators in square ones]


Across
1 Old space station approaching a celestial object (4)
MIRA - MIR (old space station), A. It's a giant red star, apparently.
4 Everyone going by taxi unhappy about foreign gentlemen (10)
CABALLEROS - CAB (taxi), ALL (everyone), then SORE (unhappy) reversed [about]. A Spanish word for "knight" or "gentleman". The Gershwins wrote of "The Land of the Gay Caballeros" in their 1930 musical "Girl Crazy" revived as a film in 1943 starring Judy Garland and Mickey Rooney.
9 Parts of the world where some might understand self-restraint? (10)
CONTINENTS - Sounds like [some might understand] "continence" (self-restraint)
10 Rough stuff from invader (4)
JUTE - Two meanings. A coarse cloth and a Germanic invader.
11 Old coin, restricted, being brought back (6)
DENIER - REINED (restricted) reversed [being brought back]. I knew this as a measure (especially re thickness of nylons) but not as an old coin.
12 Being most sullen, fades away in debate (8)
MOODIEST - DIES (fades away) in MOOT (debate). Better known perhaps as an adjective (as in "a moot point") moot also exists as a noun meaning a debate or argument. Some communities e.g. Aldeburgh in Suffolk, have or had a Moot Hall as a council chamber.
14 Soft bundle one used for drying channel (4)
WADI - WAD (soft bundle), I (one). My LOI and one error as I plumped for PADI. I did know the word however, so no excuses.
15 Estate scheme put in place first off (10)
PLANTATION - PLAN (scheme), {s}TATION (put in place) [first off]
17 St Paul's fellow possibly troubling me, 'non-saint' (10)
MINNESOTAN - Anagram [troubling] of ME NON SAINT. Names of inhabitants of American states almost always give me trouble. I'm not sure how Times crossword conventions stand on this, but the city is called "Saint Paul" so I wonder if it is legitimate to refer to it in the straight definition at "St Paul". On edit: It now appears that the sources I checked when blogging were exceptions and the most usual nomenclature is St Paul.
20 Face falling off glass instrument (4)
LUTE -  {f}LUTE (glass) [face falling off]
21 Characters getting on in South Africa protected by foreign father (8)
PERSONAE - ON in SA (South Africa) in [protected by] PÈRE (foreign father)
23 Disagreement about your being up to the job? (6)
WORTHY - ROW (disagreement) reversed [about], THY (your)
24 Money Irishman once used for a flutter? (4)
PUNT - Two meanings, the second referencing two slang terms for a wager
25 Oily substance from strange tree put in end of garden (10)
TURPENTINE - Anagram [strange] of TREE PUT IN {garde}N [end]
26 Criticise books this writer's penned — they are laughable affairs! (10)
PANTOMIMES - PAN (criticise), then I'M (this writer's) contained [penned] by TOMES (books)
27 Judge wants old-fashioned award returned (4)
DEEM - MEED (old-fashioned award) reversed [returned]. I've never heard of the award.
Down
2 Sending up musical traveller on island is out of order (11)
INOPERATIVE - Reversal [sending up] of EVITA (musical) + REP (traveller) + ON + I (island)
3 I train tot badly — it’s wearing (9)
ATTRITION - Anagram [badly] of I TRAIN TOT
4 Mischievous act, offering sanctimonious words with wish for peace (7)
CANTRIP - CANT (sanctimonious words), R.I.P. (wish for peace- Rest In Peace). It's a witch's spell or a playful trick.
5 Art in mobile home represented a piece of mathematics (8,7)
BINOMIAL THEOREM - Anagram (re-presented) of ART IN A MOBILE HOME. I spotted THEOREM early on and worked out the most likely first word from the remaining anagrist and checkers.
6 The French, showing courage and determination, survive (4,3)
LAST OUT - LA (the  - French), STOUT (showing courage and determination)
7 Exam subject covering published course (5)
ROUTE - RE (exam subject) containing  [covering] OUT (published). I never sat an RE exam in my life or knew anyone who did so at school, but I suppose it may count as an exam subject.
8 Ambassador seen in group in paper (5)
SHEET - HE (ambassador - His/Her Excellency) in SET (group)
13 NHS to charge possibly and cheat? (5-6)
SHORT-CHANGE - Anagram [possibly] of NHS TO CHARGE
16 Are gang turning up with yesteryear's rebel to be countenanced? (9)
TOLERATED  - ARE + LOT (gang) reversed [turning up], TED (yesteryear's rebel). I think the clueing of TED is fair enough here and certainly better than "hooligan"  as so often in the past but I await Jim's verdict with interest.
18 Short puzzle engaging African party in quiet room? (7)
SANCTUM - STUM{p} (puzzle) [short] containing [engaging] ANC (African party - African National Congress)
19 Quality of the present head, keeping personal (7)
NOWNESS - NESS (head - headland) containing [keeping] OWN (personal). It sounds like a modern word to me but it dates back to the 19th century with this meaning.
21 Work chewed by dog? Such may be children's book (3-2)
POP-UP - OP (work) contained [chewed] by PUP (dog)
22 Game with nobody short of energy to go into extra time? (3,2)
RUN ON - RU (game), NON{e} nobody [short of energy]
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