jackkt (jackkt) wrote in times_xwd_times,

Times Cryptic 26828

I needed 43 minutes for this. There was quite a lot of biffing going on and in addition I bunged in a few words that fitted, hoping for the best and leaving the explanations for later. There's still at least one clue that I may not fully have understood.

As Vinyl1 mentioned yesterday it would be good if we could raise the level of interest in Jumbo Cryptics around here, especially now that we have some new bloggers in that department. He suggested having a go at 1282 because it is exceptionally challenging, but for those who find Jumbos a bit too much of a challenge I would recommend having a go at the latest, 1284, as it's really quite easy.

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

1 Vessel, first with guards caught in historic offence (10)
WITCHCRAFT - WITH contains [guards] C (caught), CRAFT (vessel)
6 Try to win, following call from boxer, perhaps (4)
WOOF - WOO (try to win), F (following). Boxer makes a change from setter!
10 Type of government editor gets wild about (7)
FEDERAL - ED (editor) is contained by [gets ... FERAL (wild) ...about]
11 Far-flown messenger stopping to cross (7)
TANGELO - ANGEL (far-flown messenger) is contained by [stopping] TO. A cross between a tangerine and a grapefruit or pomelo.
12 Toiletry’s improved quality (4,5)
ROSE WATER - ROSE (improved), WATER (quality).  'Of the first water'  =  'of the highest quality'.
13 Area close to bungalow remains flooded (5)
AWASH - A (area), [close to] {bungalo}W, ASH (remains)
14 Explorer coming back on holiday (5)
CAVER - RE (on) + VAC (holiday) reversed [coming back]
15 Witness putting King Edward on spot before audience? (9)
SPECTATOR - Sounds like (before audience) "speck" (spot) "tater" (King Edward - a popular variety of potato)
17 Fen worker claiming pound to add to spoils (9)
MARSHLAND - MARS (spoils), HAND (worker) containing [claiming] L (pound)
20 Smelling off, even after sex change (female preferred) (5)
FUSTY - Both 'fusty' and 'musty' mean 'smelling stale' or 'off'. 'Female preferred' tells us we need the word starting with F here.
21 Raised standard cut by a French revolutionary (3,2)
RAN UP - PAR (standard) containing [cut  by] UN (a, French) reversed [revolutionary]
23 Stripper shows stubborn look going back inside (9)
DEFOLIANT - DEFIANT (stubborn) contains LO (look) reversed [going back inside]
25 Discipline / citizen (7)
SUBJECT - Two meanings
26 Scientist requiring energy for time shift (7)
CHEMISE - CHEMIS{t} (scientist) swaps T (time) for E (energy)
27 Uni running team, heading off to the west (4)
YALE - {r}ELAY (running team) [heading off] reversed [to the west]. I'm assuming 'relay' can be used for 'running team' as defined here although I haven't been able to find an exact match in any of the usual sources. On sporting matters I don't feel the need to explore every last nuance of meaning because everybody knows more about  the subject than I do. I noticed YALE was absent from the list of top 10 universities in the world as published last week.
28 Cleaner 1 across? (10)
BROOMSTICK - A straight definition and a cryptic hint by way of reference to 1ac, a BROOMSTICK being traditionally a witch's preferred mode of transport or craft.
1 Host's foe disembowelled in combat (5)
WAFER - F{o}E [disembowelled] in WAR (combat). 'Host' is the consecrated bread used in a Holy Communion service, usually  represented by a wafer. On a more mundane level, I'm afraid I never hear the word 'wafer' with thinking of the 'waffer theen meent' fed to Mr Creosote in the film 'The Meaning of Life', and the revolting consequences.
2 Sees through unexpected stoppage on the coast (5,4)
TIDES OVER - One might have a loan to tide one over during lean times. I don't know for sure what's going on in the second part of this clue although I suppose if the tides were 'over', meaning they stopped running for any length of time it would be unexpected. I may be missing something here.
3 Exalted lady love taken aboard after fuss kicked up (4-10)
HERO-WORSHIPPED - HER (lady), 0 (love), ROW (fuss) reversed [kicked up], SHIPPED (taken aboard)
4 Republican bucks up, recounts resulting (7)
RELATES - R (Republican), ELATES (bucks up)
5 Healthy, perhaps, if ref involved in final result (3-4)
FAT-FREE - Anagram [involved] of REF in FATE (final result)
7 Plato's last order, taking up time (5)
OMEGA - OM (order), AGE (time) reversed [taking up]. Last letter of the Greek alphabet.
8 Reckless kid able to get through the winter (9)
FOOLHARDY - FOOL (kid), HARDY (able to get through the winter - of plants)
9 Shifty aunt shuffles in, not staying with uncle? (14)
14 Appeared impulsively out of line, keeping out of the picture? (6-3)
CAMERA-SHY - CAME (appeared), RASH{l}Y (impulsively) [out of line - L]
16 Musician in action's extraordinary (9)
TOSCANINI - Anagram [extraordinary] of IN ACTION'S. The Italian conductor who died aged 90 in 1957 may not be known to many these days but he was very famous in his day, worked for much of his career in the USA and made loads of recordings which are still of historical interest. Not having thought of him for years, his name cropped elsewhere within the past few days.
18 He hears Arab right-winger putting off extremists (7)
AUDITOR - {s)AUDI (Arab) + TOR{y} (right-winger) [putting off extremists]
19 Statute penned by old novelist limited in effect (2,5)
DE FACTO - ACT (statute) contained [penned] by DEFO{e} (old novelist) [limited]
22 Liberal let down by august benefactor (5)
NOBEL - NOBLE (august) with L (Liberal) moved / let down
24 Adjust wide timber frames (5)
TWEAK - TEAK (timber) encloses [frames] W (wide)
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