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May 4th, 2019

1376 was the Saturday puzzle from that glorious Easter weekend.  Thankfully it was very much on the gentler side so we were all able to knock it off pretty quickly and get back into the garden, weren't we? (may not apply to overseas solvers).

I was all done and dusted in about 30 minutes, starting with MOB-HANDED and forgetting to note what my LOI was.  Duh.

Clues are in blue with the definition undelined.  Anagram indicators are in bold italics.

Notation:

DD: Double definition
CD: Cryptic definition
DDCDH: DD/CD hybrid where a straight definition is combined with a cryptic hint.

&Lit:  "all in one" where the entire clue is both definition and wordplay.

(fodder)* denotes an anagram of the letters in the brackets.

Rounded brackets are also used to add further clarity

Squiggly brackets {} indicate parts of a word not used

Deletions are struck out

Square brackets [ ] expand an abbreviation or shortening like N[orth]


Across

1

Doctor put into a group round hospital with many others (3-6)

MOB-HANDED - M[edical] O[fficer] BANDED around H[ospital]

6

One who’s not genuine scarecrow (3,2,5)

MAN OF STRAW - DD

12

Runner arrives in haste at start of relay (7)

HARRIER - ARR[ives] in HIE then R{elay}

13

Meeting of alumni? There’s a thing (9)

OBSESSION - O[ld] B[oy] SESSION

14

One page coming out of directory (5)

RECTO - hidden

16

A quiet period assembling for a fast start (3,9)

ASH WEDNESDAY - A, SH, WEDNESDAY. Period for Wednesday struck me as a bit odd.

17

Receive two presents but not make further advance (3,7)

GET NOWHERE - GET, NOW, HERE.  Neat.

19

Old police supervisors choosing what to close round wrists? (5,9)

WATCH COMMITTEE - DDCDH. In England and Wales, watch committees were the local government bodies which oversaw policing from 1835 until, in some areas, 1968.

22

Fair experience very popular with creep (3,5)

BIG WHEEL - BIG, W[ith] HEEL

24

Defector from Scottish party returning her dress? (6)

TARTAN - NAT[ionalist] RAT reversed

25

Politician tending to arouse lecherous thoughts, by agreement (10)

CONSENSUAL - CON[servative] SENSUAL

26

Violinist, say, during and at the end of recital? (5)

BOWER - CD playing on two different senses (and pronunciations) of BOW

29

Go over and over something on the drums (4)

ROLL - DD

30

Heavily defeat male, since all but untouchable (8)

MASSACRE - M[ale], AS, SACRE{d}

32

Even biography is an art form (5,4)

STILL LIFE - STILL, LIFE

34

This term oddly tires me out (9)

TRIMESTER - T{e}R{m} (tiresme)*

35

Inopportune fret by half back (8)

MISTIMED - MIST (as in sea fret, say) + DEMI reversed

36

Manages to drop daughter in marshland (4)

FENS - FENdS

39

Get cracking, say, to open container (5)

BEGIN - E.G. in BIN

40

Plant second holy book (good!) in church (4,6)

MOCK ORANGE - MO, then KORAN G[ood] in C[hurch of] E[ngland]

42

Presumably happy about one omitted from speech (6)

UNSAID - "UNSAD" around I

44

Searching for this, Marcel fell behind (4,4)

LOST TIME - DDCDH with the cryptic bit based around Marcel Proust's À la recherche du temps perdu

46

Illnesses later devastated island group (6,8)

LESSER ANTILLES - (illnesses later)*

48

Summarily dismissed in speech all the time (10)

THROUGHOUT - sounds like THREW OUT. Any dissenters?

49

Current situation of the national myth? (3,2,3,4)

LIE OF THE LAND - DDCDH

53

Meaning to float along (5)

DRIFT - DD (get my drift?)

54

Principally relied on such a drive in a British vehicle (5-4)

RIGHT-HAND - DD

55

One may be boring these days, joining in rough fight (7)

BRADAWL - A[nno] D[omini] in BRAWL

56

Where is the college porter?” barmaid said (4,6)

BEER CELLAR - Sounds like BEER SELLER.  Any dissenters?  "College" just seems to have been added to aid the story in the surface reading.

57

Setter chosen — assess regularly for brevity (9)

TERSENESS - {set}TER {cho}SEN {ass}ESS.  Unusual but perfectly OK.  "Regularly" doesn't always have to mean alternate letters.

Down

1

Slowly transform school party going over hotel (5)

MORPH - PROM reversed, H[otel]

2

Literary castle often veiled (10)

BRIDESHEAD - DDCDH.  I can't help thinking there's a "that's" or similar missing.

3

A monarch abandoning modern art, rejected as without purpose (2,6)

AT RANDOM - A, (modernart)* without the E[lizabeth] R[egina].  "Rejected" strikes me as a slighly flaky anagrind.

4

Refuse Duke Lawrence (5)

DROSS - D[uke] Ross.  Apparently T.E. Lawrence was also known as John Hume Ross. *shrugs*

5

Philosopher taking sort of lead, with children round about (9)

DESCARTES - Back on familiar territory with one of the philosophers from the Monty Python song.  Constructed by putting SCART (one of those video leads with the funny-shaped ends) into SEED reversed.

6

Paste is inserted by doctor (4)

MISO - IS in our doctor from 1 across.

7

Properly fixed, having got worse after November (6)

NAILED - AILED after N[ovember]

8

Paper money minister initially covered in restrictions (9,5)

FINANCIAL TIMES - FINANCIAL, M{inister} in TIES

9

Delivered curve ball, perhaps, got very upset (5,1,6)

THREW A WOBBLY - DDCDH

10

In a Med island clubs grow together (7)

ACCRETE - C[lubs] in A CRETE

11

Wheatear chewed and eaten by senior bird (10)

SHEARWATER - (wheatear)* in S[enio]R

15

Excessive lavender and rosemary at first in round border (9)

OVERLARGE -L{avender} A{nd} R{osemary} in O VERGE

18

Not so much needed to cover girl, being thin (8)

LEANNESS - LESS around ANNE

20

Sensational preoccupation about running water (9)

THRILLING - THING around RILL

21

Crazed drummer’s means of transport (10)

MOONSTRUCK - (Keith) MOON's TRUCK

23

Nursing leg, shot — by him? (10)

GUNSLINGER - (nursing leg)*

27

What everyone supports the tiniest bit: government (9)

WHITEHALL -EH, ALL under (supporting) WHIT

28

No atmosphere? I’m having to change double act (9,5)

PANTOMIME HORSE - (no atmosphere I'm)*

31

Made manure as temperature dropped in calm (8)

COMPOSED - COMPOSTED with T[emperature] kicked out

33

Paste up a brunette, top of torso retouched (6,6)

PEANUT BUTTER - (up a brunette T{orso})*

34

Not to be touched on behind, daughter ordered (9)

TABULATED - TABU, LATE, D[aughter]

37

Inch round close to the blue delta, not across the bay? (4-6)

SIDE-SADDLE - SIDLE around {th}E SAD D{elta}.  Great definition.

38

At home, box inlaid with pine missing its top — turn to ash (10)

INCINERATE - IN CRATE around pINE

41

Stalin as a vicious aggressor (9)

ASSAILANT - (stalin as a)*

43

Not mentally sound, take horse out? (8)

UNSTABLE - DDCDH

45

Set of dishes for ceremony (7)

SERVICE - DD

47

Good-time girl’s sort of infection (6)

FUNGAL - FUN GAL

50

Stranger backing Communist Party (5)

ODDER - RED DO reversed

51

President commonly received a text (5)

ADAMS - 'AD A MS (manuscript)

52

Hollywood figure perhaps, half naked (4)

STAR - STAR{kers}

Times Cryptic Jumbo No 1377 - 22nd April

I was wondering if we might get a more testing puzzle for the Bank Holiday, but no. This was rather a middle-of-the-road Jumbo and I completed it in about 45 minutes. I don't think there were any unknowns for me, and a lot of the clues wouldn't be out of place in the Quick Crossword. But there are quite a few gems in the wordplay. I liked 25a, 28a, 52a, 7d and 8d, but my COD goes to the poor english-as-a-second-language student friend at 50d. Thanks setter for the entertainment. How did you all like it?
Read all about it...Collapse )
This was medium difficulty, I thought. Once more I did it during odd moments and don’t have a time, but at least I did finish. My progress was basically clockwise: NW, NE, SE and SW. My LOI was 22dn, but largely because I’d mistyped one of the crossing answers, so had a wrong helper! Next to last was 17dn, which was genuinely harder.

My clue of the day was 18ac, with its delightfully disguised definition. 24dn was also something special. Thanks to the setter for a very enjoyable puzzle.

Clues are in blue, with definitions and hidden answers underlined. Answers are in BOLD CAPS, then wordplay. (ABC*) means 'anagram of ABC'. Deletions are in [square brackets].

Across
1 Capture attention of doctor, accepting I have temperature (6)
DIVERT: DR “accepting” I’VE, then T.

4 Mushroom’s round truncated cap in range of colours (8)
SPECTRUM: SPEC is PECS backwards (“round”), then TRUM[p] is to cap, truncated.

10 Spell against an ogre, but not one dragon (9)
TERMAGANT: TERM, A, G[i]ANT.

11 Animal turned peripatetic to some extent (5)
TAPIR: reverse (“turned”) hidden answer (“to some extent”).

12 Listened to more ambitious rock (7)
BOULDER: sounds like (“listened to”) BOLDER.

13 Software to facilitate calm (7)
APPEASE: APP (software), EASE (facilitate).

14 Ointment Victor found in discount promotion (5)
SALVE: V “found in” SALE.

15 In which one may see salsa or tango with a lilt playing outside (8)
TORTILLA: OR T (tango, in the phonetic alphabet) with an anagram (“playing”) of (A LILT*) outside.

18 Curious elk is in front of Huckleberry Finn’s home, perhaps (8)
HELSINKI: anagram (“curious”) of (ELK IS IN H*). The H is the “front” of Huckleberry. Clever clue: the juxtaposition of Huckleberry & Finn is a delight.

20 Be in state of shock about parking and drive off (5)
REPEL: REEL (be in state of shock) “about” P (parking).

23 Man responsible for scale of damage to sluices (7)
CELSIUS: anagram (“damage”) of (SLUICES*).

25 Writer appearing when Grace gets bowled out (7)
LESSING: [b]LESSING, with B (bowled) “out”.

26 Amusing free gift from The Sun (5)
LIGHT: double definition.

27 Trendy new bath filling before getting inflatable ring (5,4)
INNER TUBE: IN (trendy), N (new), TUB (bath) “filling” ERE (before).

28 Comprehensive treatment for plant? (3,5)
THE WORKS: another double definition.

29 Article probes religious group, crossing line (6)
SECANT: AN (article) “probes” SECT.

Down
1 Lead for device at humble computer store (8)
DATABASE: D[evice], AT, ABASE (humble).

2 Like wildfire swallowing Utah up, to all intents and purposes (7)
VIRTUAL: VIRAL (like wildfire), “swallowing” TU (Utah, “up”). Not sure “viral” and “like wildfire” are exact substitutes, but the concept is “spread like wildfire/went viral on social media”, for example.

3 Think again about Miss Scarlett’s clothing possibly concealing answer (9)
READDRESS: RED (Miss Scarlet), DRESS (clothing, perhaps) “concealing” A (answer).

5 Terrier is chasing mine to secure territory (8,6)
PITCAIRN ISLAND: PIT (mine), CAIRN (Scottish terrier; something I didn’t know), IS, LAND (secure).

6 Clue to many unions being affected by separation (3,2)
CUT UP: a backwards clue, in the sense that the answer could be a clue for something in the actual clue. So, CUT “UP” could be a clue for TUC (Trades Union Council) – which obviously covers many unions. On edit: Jerry says it’s a Congress, not a Council. Sorry.

7 Archangel manipulated a harp with panache, sending out a note (7)
RAPHAEL: anagram (“manipulated”) of (A HARP*), then EL[an], missing A N[ote].

8 Poet, with just one line, eliciting wonder (6)
MARVEL: MARVEL[l] was the poet.

9 Goal and penalty for Spurs (6,3,5)
CARROT AND STICK: a bit loose perhaps, but a CARROT is a reward for the metaphorical donkey, and the STICK is a penalty. Can anyone see more to this?

16 Body of persevering rebels available if needed (2,7)
IN RESERVE: anagram (“rebels”) of (-ERSEVERIN-*), i.e the “body” of [p]ERSEVERIN[g].

17 Occasion for many buffets — and one such for hedgehogs? (8)
SLUGFEST: a whimsical definition, and then an even more whimsical one, referring to two different meanings of “buffet”. I don’t know what hedgehogs eat, but I doubt slugs are a main feature!

19 Obstacle dividing EU and English in country-specific text (7)
ECLOGUE: CLOG “dividing” EU, then E for English. One of those words I know only from these crosswords, and then only vaguely.

21 Back I run into a swelling flower (7)
PRIMULA: I R (run) “into” A LUMP, all “back”.

22 Model racing boat docked point (6)
SCULPT: SCUL[l] (racing boat, docked), PT (point).

24 Where to see one of trio delivering portion of song (5)
INTRO: you look at TRIO and, if you’re a cryptic crossworder, you might see I (one) “IN” TRO. We’re a weird mob!