February 3rd, 2020

  • jackkt

Times Quick Cryptic 1540 by Izetti

I just noticed I blogged only one Izetti puzzle in the whole of 2019 but this is my second consecutive in 2020 and it's only 3rd February! Also he has set 143 QCs  of which I have blogged 14, so 10% of his QC output has been on my watch. At only 7 minutes I found this at the easier end of the Izetti range. I have achieved this 9 times out of  the 143 but only bettered it once, finishing in 6 minutes on that occasion.

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Ulaca de Milo
  • ulaca

Times 27577 - Harmony and Prosperity?

Despite a smattering of tricky vocab, the congruous nature of the literals made this a pretty straightforward Monday offering. Special thanks to the setter on two counts: evoking images of horryd at 1d and referencing a much misunderstood and maligned species at 17a.

20 minutes.


1 Russian conspirator’s crimes involved with debt (10)
6 Peacekeepers infiltrating old army? Something fishy here (4)
TUNA - UN in TA (the late, lamented Territorial Army, immortalised by Gareth in The Office)
9 Nothing from speaker left tucking into two molluscs (7)
NAUTILI - NAUT (sounds like nought) L in II
10 Suspicion of fluid ejected by octopuses and marine fish? (7)
12 Prelude of note in Italian romantic opera, originally (5)
INTRO - N in IT R[omantic] O[pera]
13 Dish encountered in hospital department, on Sundays principally (9)
ENTREMETS - MET (encountered) in ENT RE (about) S[undays]; a fancy word for something between courses
14 Popular fellow playing on lute, say, right away (15)
17 Raced after lookalike, such as Fink-Nottle for example (6-9)
DOUBLE-BARRELLED - DOUBLE (lookalike) BARRELLED ('raced', as in 'She fair barrelled down the slope'); Gussie Fink-Nottle is a Wodehousean chinless wonder. Granted, quite a large subset...
20 Male, one Conservative on radio introducing a Liberal leader (9)
EDITORIAL - ED I TORI (sounds like Tory) A L
21 Meat Muslims consume, primarily available in communal dining area (5)
HALAL - A[vailable] in HALL
23 Joint gamble involving danger (7)
24 Wave initially to Sophie, a friend in Paris (7)
TSUNAMI - T[o] S[ophie] UN AMI; bien entendu
25 Leguminous plant, one originally unknown in South Africa (4)
SOYA - O[ne] Y (sciency unknown) in SA
26 Noted creation for sending off new issue? (6,4)
CRADLE SONG - a fancy expression for a lullaby


1 Foppish fellow openly resisted when speaking (9)
DANDIFIED - DAN 'defied'
2 What solicitors do in place of trials? (5)
COURT - double definition
3 Girl Friday reportedly composed old opus about autumn (4,2,3,4)
MAID OF ALL WORK -sounds like 'made' then FALL in O WORK; just doesn't have the ring of 'Jack of all trades', I'm afraid
4 First-class workers in extremely robust clothing (7)
RAIMENT - AI MEN in R[obus]T
5 Dairy product in list carried by close relative (7)
7 Worldwide student poetry almost entirely unfinished (9)
UNIVERSAL - UNI (student) VERS (poetry almost) AL (entirely unfinished)
8 Protection say accepted by road workers ultimately (5)
AEGIS - EG in AI (Great North Road) [worker]S
11 Be generally hospitable, eager to welcome religious leader home (4,4,5)
KEEP OPEN HOUSE - POPE in KEEN HOUSE; 'Open House' is beloved by Dr Mahatir Mohamad, who I once unwittingly referred to as 'Madasahatir'. I avoided jail time.
15 Absurdity of way Charlie gets thrown by greed (9)
16 Unexpectedly godly line in vocalisation? (9)
18 Footsore person of second celebrity group? (7)
BLISTER - B LISTER; FOOTSORE is only an adjective in Collins and Lexico (Oxford in old money)
19 Joker finally in euphoric state, as the Marx Brothers were (7)
20 English doctor on American board (5)
EMBUS - E MB US; 'board' as in get on a bus
22 Some fill a novel — that’s plain (5)
LLANO - hidden in words 2-4