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Times 27325 - Settlements Abounding

A rare excursion under 20 minutes for me, so easy, but perhaps not as easy as I made it, since it had very little sciency stuff. No, looking at it again, I'd say this was pretty darned easy. Apologies to anyone who was done by ACRE or PRENUPS or whatever, and no aspersions aimed towards the setter, as this was a very enjoyable run-out and hopefully a graduation opportunity for fledgling solvers seeking to give their wings a good flap and take to the sometimes rarefied air of the main cryptic.


1 Finger problem exhibited by party pooper (4)
TYPO - hidden in[par]TY PO[OPER]
3 Fail to criticise a suggestion about power (10)
DISAPPOINT - P (power) in DIS (variant of diss) A POINT
9 Completed a couple of lines on average (7)
11 Confident when taken to court about source of revenue (7)
ASSURED - R[evenue] in AS (when) SUED
12 Living area accommodating French art gallery (7,6)
HOUSING ESTATE - HOUSING (accommodating) ES (French for '[you (s)] are' - as in 'Tu EStrès méchant') TATE
14 Emperor backs a follower of another one (5)
RASTA - reversal of A TSAR; besides carrying a ghetto blaster a RASTA traditionally reveres Haile Selassie, erstwhile Emperor of Ethopia
15 A nice long novel can be relaxing (9)
17 Stimulate boxer to eat large starter (5,4)
19 Reserves place for supplier of ham that's appetising (5)
TASTY - TA (Territorial Army, renamed Army Reserve in 2014 after Gareth Keenan had done irreparable harm to the body's reputation STY
21 Real sociable type's a help for builder (8,5)
CONCRETE MIXER - CONCRETE (real) MIXER (sociable type); not the sort of clue they'd give you if you were an aspirant to Bletchley Park duties
24 Fortress initially constructed with ornate detail (7)
CITADEL - C[onstructed] DETAIL*
25 Running races after rocket: that’s guts! (7)
VISCERA - VI (a rocket developed by the Nazis) RACES*
26 Take weight off Green politician in bandage (10)
27 Turning, smack annoying flier (4)
GNAT - TANG reversed; 'tang' as in 'You've given quite a smack to your spaghetti alla puttanesca'


1 Also spotted singer keeping book cleaner (10)
TOOTHBRUSH - TOO (also) B (book) in THRUSH (spotted singer)
2 Union rules schools introducing new uniform (7)
PRENUPS - N U in PREPS; prenups should be banned and couples forced to have joint bank accounts instead
4 Having no base in Paris he meets soldier in pub (9)
ILLOGICAL - IL (in Paris 'he') GI in LOCAL
5 Stockpile a lot of documents head of army sent in (5)
AMASS - A (a) A (head of 'arm') in MSS (manuscripts/documents)
6 Frank often replaces these collector's items (7,6)
POSTAGE STAMPS - a cryptic definition (CD); franking is a means of replacing the good old stamp, which can be valuable enough to collect
7 Someone in acre with capital? (7)
ISRAELI - another CD; ACRE is in northern Israel
8 Flap over Dorothy lifted (2-2)
TO-DO - reversal of O (over) DOT (abbreviation of Dorothy)
10 A milkman doing trips for beasts in general (6,7)
13 Miss school drama article placed for son in trust (4,6)
PLAY TRUANT - PLAY (drama) AN instead of S in TRU[s]T
16 Original shots, say, drunk by locals (9)
18 Frugal, like soccer team having had to spend pounds (7)
ASCETIC - AS (like) [Glasgow] CE[l]TIC sans the L
20 Observed transporting nine tons in square (7)
SIXTEEN - IX T in SEEN for the number that is 4x4
22 One who regrets imprisoning Liberal head of state? (5)
RULER - L in RUER; an escapee from the Quickie
23 Dispatched two varieties of diamonds (4)
ICED - ICE D; 22's accomplice...


( 46 comments — Leave a comment )
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Apr. 15th, 2019 12:00 am (UTC)
A Monday puzzle if ever there was one, but pleasant. I liked ISRAELI and PRENUPS; but I wouldn't mind if there was a moratorium on French art (especially in the same puzzle as 'in Paris he'). It's Haile, U.
Apr. 15th, 2019 01:25 am (UTC)
Re: 14:55
I thoroughly agree - I dislike the 'French art' chestnut, and have done so ever since it bewildered me on first encountering it (decades ago), despite my degree being in French and Latin. 'French art gallery' is of course a gimme for ESTATE, but let's have something more imaginative and accurate.
RE: 14:55 - ulaca - Apr. 15th, 2019 06:23 am (UTC) - Expand
Apr. 15th, 2019 01:12 am (UTC)
I did not find this that easy....
....and struggled for a long time with the 'toothbrush'/housing estate'/'spark plug'. This was largely because I didn't see the enumeration for 'housing estate', and thought it was a 13-letter answer. It was much easier with the break in the middle, and 'toothbrush' followed instantly.

'Israeli', however, was my LOI, as I finally put it in as the only word that would fit, and then saw how it works.

I do agree that the rest of the puzzle was easy.
Apr. 15th, 2019 05:43 am (UTC)
I failed at the last hurdle, Israeli, thought it was a currency, what does the with capital mean?

Otherwise very enjoyable.
Apr. 15th, 2019 05:54 am (UTC)
Acre with a capital A is the city in Israel.
(no subject) - flashman - Apr. 15th, 2019 06:00 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - gothick_matt - Apr. 15th, 2019 07:00 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - Mike Cowking - Apr. 15th, 2019 10:22 am (UTC) - Expand
Apr. 15th, 2019 05:54 am (UTC)
14:33 … and just about the right amount of thought required for a Monday on my part.

I had no sweet clue how ISRAELI worked at the time and was even starting to type the question “What’s 'with capital' got to do with it?'“ when it finally occurred to me that the city of Acre has a capital letter. Curse these setters and their cunning ways.

Good fun. Thanks setter and u
Apr. 15th, 2019 06:03 am (UTC)
26 minutes wih ISRAELI as my LOI and gets a rare COD award from me because of its devious bending of the rule that states that words that require capital letters in the cryptic reading must have them; I don't recall seeing that trick before. Other than that, this was all fairly straightforward.

Not questioning the validity, but isn't SPARK PLUG a more recent addition to the language than the 'sparking plug'?
Apr. 15th, 2019 07:55 am (UTC)
I'm going to guess yes, on the basis that I have never heard it referred to as a 'sparking plug'.
(no subject) - vinyl1 - Apr. 15th, 2019 12:50 pm (UTC) - Expand
Apr. 15th, 2019 06:41 am (UTC)
Nice and straightforward this morning finishing with a biffed ISRAELI. I hesitated over this one wondering why acre wasn’t capitalised and thinking I’m sure it’s not the capital of Israel. It was only when I checked here I put two and two together (or had them put together for me)!
Apr. 15th, 2019 07:04 am (UTC)
28 minutes, and add me to the "biffed ISRAELI with a shrug at the end" crew. Doesn't help that I'd never heard of Acre...
Apr. 15th, 2019 07:07 am (UTC)
9:36. It must be Monday. I didn't know Acre was a city in Israel, but the checkers made it clear that it was. Nice clue. Thanks for the video link U.
Apr. 15th, 2019 07:29 am (UTC)
Missed opportunity
What a jape it would have been had TYPO turned up in pink on submission! Ah well.
I'm happy enough with 14.45, with most answers going in promptly. DISAPPOINT took longer than most, and CONGENIAL resisted while I tried to make it end in -ING.
I could be ultra picky and aver that no Israeli lives in Acre: to them it's Akko (I transliterate and reverse for those of you not familiar with Hebrew), but I liked the clue well enough to make it my COD for originality.
The TO-DO clue fell into place without much reference to the wordplay, rather because that's what, throughout the film, that's what Dorothy calls her dog
Apr. 15th, 2019 07:57 am (UTC)
Re: Missed opportunity
By that principle no Germans live in Munich, no Russians live in Moscow... I could go on!
Re: Missed opportunity - jerrywh - Apr. 15th, 2019 08:20 am (UTC) - Expand
Re: Missed opportunity - z8b8d8k - Apr. 15th, 2019 11:27 am (UTC) - Expand
Apr. 15th, 2019 07:29 am (UTC)
What could circle the globe and is stuck in one corner?
25 mins with yoghurt, granola, banana, etc.
DNK Acre so bemused by Israeli. But hat off to the setter for cluing it without the usual reference to Disraeli or Lear.
I thought the pug/boxer had to be a dog breed thing that I didn't know, but it looks like it is a boxer/pugilist slang thing that I didn't know.
Mostly I liked: Citadel with the ornate detail.
Thanks setter and U.

PS. I wonder if the boxer pug is pronounced 'pyooj'. I'll ask a couple.

Edited at 2019-04-15 07:38 am (UTC)
Apr. 15th, 2019 07:50 am (UTC)
Re: What could circle the globe and is stuck in one corner?
Apparently it isn't 'pyooj'
Mike Harper
Apr. 15th, 2019 07:38 am (UTC)
...on train. ISRAELI last in - my knowledge of Acre only coming from a very old Dr Who story (Hartnell - The Crusaders). Otherwise all very straightforward.
Apr. 15th, 2019 07:55 am (UTC)
Existential decisions
22 minutes with LOI and COD PRENUPS. Is a boxer a pug? They have similarities, but I had them as different breeds. Or are all dogs pugs at a general level? Also, is there a distinction between midges, gnats and mosquitos? Or should I spell them as mosquitoes? Too many decisions for a Monday morning. I didn't twig why Acre was a capital until coming here either. A decent start to the week, nevertheless. Thank you U and setter.
Apr. 15th, 2019 08:21 am (UTC)
Re: Existential decisions
Pug = pugilist, slang term for
RE: Re: Existential decisions - boltonwanderer - Apr. 15th, 2019 09:18 am (UTC) - Expand
Apr. 15th, 2019 08:04 am (UTC)
10:02. Nice and straightforward. I too liked the cunning device for getting round the capital letter rule in 7dn.
Apr. 15th, 2019 08:18 am (UTC)
Monday puzzle, but a nice one of the genre. Concluded, as is apparently obligatory today, with the intitially mysterious ISRAELI.
Apr. 15th, 2019 08:20 am (UTC)
Good fun, 20 minutes, liked ISRAELI and had heard of Acre, liked PRENUP my LOI.
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( 46 comments — Leave a comment )

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