June 19th, 2019

Times Quick Cryptic 1377 by Oink

All the vocabulary known to me today, and the clues were easy enough to unpick, which led to a pretty quick time. I had to return to the two longish anagrams at the top and left of the grid. I think the latter because the letters to jumble were split up, and the former because I had always thought the phrase was spelled with a 'gh', but it's narrow rather than neat. One to add to the list that already includes 'shoo-in' (not 'shoe-in') and 'whet' (not wet) the appetite.

Anyway, definitions are underlined.

1 Prudish doctor startled CIA (6-5)
STRAIT-LACED - anagram of (doctor) STARTLED CIA.
9 Half of church service makes you heave (5)
CHURN - half of the letters of CHUrch, then RN (Royal Navy, service).
10 Pretend Rilke’s got this curly hair? (7)
TENDRIL - hidden in (...'s got this) preTEND RILke.
11 Peacekeepers felt in perfect condition (9)
UNTOUCHED - UN (United Nations, peacekeepers), then TOUCHED (felt).
13 Drug put in army’s drink (3)
TEA - E (Ecstasy, drug) inside (put in) TA (Territorial Army, army). Hopefully you were all paying attention to Vinyl's comments this week!
14 Crowded, as lunch may be? (6)
PACKED - cryptic second definition.
16 Summary that’s almost exact (6)
PRECIS - all but the last letter of (almost) PRECISe (exact).
17 Diaries occasionally displaying anger (3)
IRE - every other letter from (occasionally) dIaRiEs.
18 Histrionics alarmed Mo terribly (9)
MELODRAMA - anagram of (terribly) ALARMED MO.
21 Outfit for the tango follower? (7)
UNIFORM - the letter after T (tango), in the phonetic alphabet.
23 Vicar taken aback by extremely strange poem (5)
VERSE - REV (reverend, vicar) reversed (taken back), next to the outermost letters of (extremely) StrangE.
24 Second right-wing bank clerk is a liar (11)
STORYTELLER - S (second), TORY (right-wing), anf TELLER (bank clerk).

2 In which money may be kept tied up, you say? (5)
TRUST - sounds like (you say?) "trussed" (tied up).
3 Made sauna boiling time after time (2,7)
AD NAUSEAM - anagram of (boiling) MADE SAUNA.
4 Songbird perching on top of church, a little one (5)
TITCH - TIT (songbird) above (perching on top of) CH (church).
5 Article about northern woman (3)
ANN - AN (article, as in the part of speech) surrounding (about) N (northern).
6 Unpredictable boy catching rodent (7)
ERRATIC - ERIC (boy) surrounding (catching) RAT (rodent).
7 Scout cooking with Primus? Yummy! (11)
SCRUMPTIOUS - anagram of (cooking) SCOUT with PRIMUS.
8 Beardless son in spotless shelter (5-6)
CLEAN-SHAVEN - S (son) inside CLEAN (spotless) and HAVEN (shelter).
12 Stupidly derailed Victor, a reckless type (9)
DAREDEVIL - anagram of (stupidly) DERAILED and V (victor, phonetic alphabet again).
15 Scientific man Nietzsche mistrusted to an extent (7)
CHEMIST - hidden in (to an extent) nietzsCHE MISTrusted.
19 Yours truly’s following lake north of Italian border (5)
LIMIT - I'M (yours truly is) after (following) L (lake), all above (north of) IT (italian).
20 Concede Her Majesty must retire in time (5)
AGREE - ER (Her Majesty) reversed (must retire), inside AGE (time).
22 Row after pig has head chopped off (3)
OAR - bOAR (pig) without its first letter (has head chopped off).

Times 27381 - footwear fine, trousers needed redressing.

Another fine crossword of medium difficulty, with a couple of somewhat obscure answers at 7d and 3d which were gettable from wordplay if you weren't a topologist or a bullfight enthusiast. The rest was good fun and fair; I'm not quite convinced 17d works and I liked 11a for its 'element of Labour' idea. About 25 minutes all told, delayed for a while by my initial perfect but wrong answer at 27a q.v. below.

1 Seaman entering boozer to see what's afoot? (5)
SABOT - AB = seaman, inside SOT = boozer.
4 Craftsman penning unlimited poems in rocker (9)
SHOEMAKER - SHAKER = rocker, has (P) OEM (S) inserted.
9 Small case for diamonds? (5,4)
MINOR SUIT - Small = MINOR, case = SUIT as in lawsuit. Diamonds and clubs are the minor suits in Bridge, as opposed to spades and hearts being the majors, ranking and scoring more highly.
10 Lustre perceived when heroin's injected (5)
SHEEN - SEEN has H inserted.
11 Police officer probing one element of Labour opposition (13)
CONTRADICTION - DI the Detective Inspector is inserted into CONTRACTION, "one element of labour".
14 Party threatening to ditch leader (4)
RAVE - GRAVE loses its G.
15 Natural fibre, too much found in racket left on court (6,4)
COTTON WOOL - OTT = too much, goes inside CON = racket, then WOO = court, L for left.
18 Visual aids having setter long for correction? (10)
LORGNETTES - (SETTER LONG)*. Kind of specs with a handle instead of side pieces; derived from the French word lorgner which means to look sideways or squint at.
19 Pack animals to watch bears (4)
STOW - Hidden word in ANIMAL(S TO W)ATCH.
21 Dad recalled agent introducing one couple, fifty or so (13)
APPROXIMATELY - PA = Dad, recalled = AP: PROXY = agent; insert I (one), MATE (couple), L (fifty).
24 Senior retired Liberal in fashion again (5)
OLDER - Reverse REDO with L inserted.
25 Almost complete backing for exhibit in church showing conversions? (9)
CHANGEFUL - FUL(L) goes on the end of C (HANG) E where CE = church and HANG = exhibit.
27 During many deliveries, Dr West stripped off outer garb (9)
OVERDRESS - I went wrong here and it took me a while to correct when I saw 17d didn't end in T: I had OVERTREWS being (WEST)* 'doctored' inside OVERS. Perfectly parsed. But then I corrected myself after 17d fell in, as it's DR and (W) ES (T) inside OVERS; WEST is stripped of its outside letters.
28 Limit old women's fund (5)
ENDOW - END = limit, O(ld), W(omen).

1 House group D? (10)
SEMICIRCLE - house = SEMI, CIRCLE = group.
2 Exile's collar turned up (3)
BAN - collar = NAB, reverse it.
3 Spanish fighter quickly ran mounted troops (6)
TORERO - TORE = quickly ran, OR reversed.
4 Canvasses on display, reputable Society taking the lead (6,3)
SOUNDS OUT - SOUND = reputable, S(ociety), OUT = on display.
5 Matter bringing down temperature of the eye (5)
OPTIC - TOPIC (matter) has its T dropped down.
6 Campaigns fail, stopped by endless din from below (8)
MISSIONS - MISS = fail, has NOIS(E) reversed inserted.
7 Unorthodox vessel's link to betel nuts (5,6)
KLEIN BOTTLE - (LINK TO BETEL)*. I did remember this thing from maths days although I couldn't have defined it exactly; https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Klein_bottle will explain it. Once you sort out BOTTLE from the anagrist you can probably guess the KLEIN from the remaining letters.
8 Regular payment slashed (4)
RENT -Double definition.
12 Don't stop English composer hiding for instance in Tyneside (5,3,3)
NEVER SAY DIE - SAY (for instance) inside E, VER DI inside N E = Tyneside.
13 Comprehensive strike has support of illegitimate offspring (4-2-4)
BLOW-BY-BLOW - strike is the first BLOW and a BY-BLOW is an old term for a bastard.
16 Her vital statistics initially disrupted play (3,6)
THE RIVALS - (HER VITAL S)*, S from statistics; play by Sheridan.
17 Dazzling feature of church in India (8)
INSPIRED - Well, a church can be SPIRED and IN can mean India but for me that's not leading exactly to IN SPIRED, but either the clue doesn't quite work or I'm missing something (as usual).
20 Departs, with inclination to wave (6)
DANGLE - D(eparts), ANGLE = inclination.
22 Auditor's dealing with file at the appropriate time (2,3)
ON CUE - ON CUE sounds like ON QUEUE i.e. dealing with file.
23 Island shot guards Down Under (4)
GOZO - GO = shot, has OZ inserted. A neat little clue IMO.
26 Rage following promotion (3)
FAD - F = following, AD = promotion. RAGE = FAD as in 'all the RAGE'.