rolytoly (rolytoly) wrote in times_xwd_times,

Times Quick Cryptic No 1338 by Mara

I found this on the trickier side of things, being pushed over the 15 minute mark thanks to some faffing about in the NE. I mis-parsed 7d, and spent some time trying to square the answer with only half the definition. I also came a cropper at 9ac having entered a plausible enough alternative answer (well, plausible except for that pesky little detail about it having to intersect with other clues). Further time was spent at 10ac trying to remember that word for "delicate" that was on the tip of my tongue ("diaphanous" - right length, as it happens). I don't think I was particularly quick round the rest of it either , but there were some nice clues - I remember particularly liking 4ac,16d and the two double definitions at 8ac and 24ac. Very good puzzle - many thanks to Mara!

1 Some discontent on gallant island nation (5)
TONGA - Hidden in "some" of the letters of discontenT ON GAllant
4 Surrender vilified after retreat (7)
DELIVER -  REVILED = vilified, reversed = after retreat. Surrender/deliver/hand over/etc.
8 Heavy trampolinist? (7)
BOUNCER - double definition, a heavy = a guard, etc. Nice!
9 Average is capital! (5)
PARIS - PAR (average) IS. I had MEANS (mean's = average's) entered, and forgot on returning to the NE that I wasn't quite 100% happy with it.
10 Expensive clasps are, almost entirely, delicate (10)
PRECARIOUS - PRECIOUS (expensive) clasps/holds AR ("ARe" almost entirely)
14 An American girl far from home? (6)
ABROAD - A broad = an American girl
15 Nebuchadnezzar, for example, daring (6)
BOTTLE - double definition. I thought a Nebuchadnezzar was the largest bottle size, coming in at 20 normal bottles of champagne/claret, but I see the largest is 40 bottles and called either Melchizedek or Midas. Good luck giving that thing a shake. Normally a stupid custom, but I'd have it as the opening round of a decadent strong man competition: a minute to shake it, points for highest fountain, and whatever's left in the bottle must be consumed before continuing.
17 US president plying heroes with wine (10)
EISENHOWER - anagram (plying) of HEROES with WINE
20 Artist mid-morning, maybe, returning (5)
MANET - TEN AM is plausibly mid-morning, reverse/return
22 Hearing of our nation, this English composer (7)
BRITTEN - is heard the same as BRITAIN (our nation)
23 Give account of art near complex (7)
NARRATE - anagram (complex) of ART NEAR
24 Arctic fleet (5)
NIPPY - double definition. Fleet/quick/nippy. In my book, the lovely surface more than makes up for any temperature differential there might be between "arctic" and "nippy".
1 Instrument neighbour put up (4)
TUBA - to ABUT = to neighbour, put up/reversed
2 Absence of American intelligence (4)
NOUS - NO (absence of) US (American)
3 Discover fluff in car seat (9)
ASCERTAIN - anagram (fluff) of IN CAR SEAT
4 Frank having credit renewed (6)
DIRECT - anagram (renewed) of CREDIT
5 Drink: a complete round (3)
LAP - double definition
6 So bottomless, opening for drink (8)
VERMOUTH - VERY = So, bottomless = remove the bottom letter ; MOUTH (opening)
7 Incredible dessert I held back (8)
RESISTED - anagram (incredible) of DESSERT I. I was just blindly convinced that the parsing was an anagram of "dessert" within which the "I" was held, giving "back" for "resisted". I know, doesn't make any sense.
11 Old African horse and I, struggling (9)
RHODESIAN - anagram (struggling) of HORSE AND I
12 Out of order, nameless traders (8)
SALESMEN - anagram (out of order) of NAMELESS
13 Voting system about right, is one captive? (8)
PRISONER - PR (Proportional Representation = voting system) going about/around R(ight) IS ONE.
16 Fix strange blue drink (6)
DOUBLE - DO (fix) ; anagram (strange) of BLUE. Do = fix as in "the person came to do the boiler. Also works as a noun: in a do / a fix / a tight spot.
18 Cease work below street (4)
STOP - OP (work) below ST(reet)
19 Sole aplenty, reel in two, all tails up (4)
ONLY -  all tails up = all last letters, reversed of aplentY, reeL iN twO
21 Food and drink (3)
TEA - double definition.

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