rolytoly (rolytoly) wrote in times_xwd_times,
rolytoly
rolytoly
times_xwd_times

Times Quick Cryptic No 1438 by Orpheus

I was creeping close to my target, so didn't hang around to think more about 1d and 18d, and was marginally surprised not to see the unlucky sign for a change. 1d is news to me, but I don't have the same excuse with the fibre at 18d: it's appeared a number of times, as recently as 28th July in the ST crossword. Nice range of clues today, and I (re)learnt a couple of things along the way, so all good - many thanks to Orpheus!


Across
1 Give birth with assistance (5)
WHELP - W(ith) HELP (assistance). The verb derives from the noun, an old word for cub.
4 One abstaining from food more quickly (6)
FASTER - double definition
9 Gorge, and reach too high a temperature in Bow? (7)
OVEREAT - Cockney pronunciation ("in Bow") of OVERHEAT (reach too high a temperature)
10 Decomposing matter emits awful smell around university (5)
HUMUS - HUMS (emits awful smell) around U(niversity). As a potential nickname, Humus is an incentive for all the Hughs out there to maintain good personal hygiene.
11 What those in authority may have, for example (3)
SAY - Nice double definition: if you've got say you've got sway.
12 Cheeky response from rear about headgear (8)
BACKCHAT - BACK (rear) C (circa = about) HAT (headgear)
15 Trick woman into cooking for stars (13)
CONSTELLATION - CON (trick) STELLA (random woman) and an anagram (cooking) of INTO
17 Firm securing gold suitable for stashing away (8)
STORABLE - STABLE (firm) securing OR (gold)
18 Blade cutting off pig’s head (3)
OARcut the head/first letter off BOAR (pig)
20 Broadcast about poet’s work (5)
RELAY - RE (about) LAY (poet's work)
22 Report of central European going to city for medical examination (5-2)
CHECK-UP - sounds like (report of) CZECH (central European) UP (going to city)
23 Person consulting doctor is disheartened — that’s plain (6)
PATENT - PATIENT (person consulting doctor) dis-heartened = remove the central letter
24 Vagrant originally moving around in biblical land (5)
NOMAD - M A ("originally" Moving Around) goes in NOD (biblical land). Cain was exiled to the Land of Nod, where according to Josephus he continued his wickedness by establishing weights and measures and property rights, and by building a fortified city. Nomad means from a wandering tribe in Greek, and is unrelated to the Hebrew for wander which is nod.

Down
1 Court left wine in Lord Chancellor’s place (8)
WOOLSACK - WOO (court) L(eft) SACK (wine - from French "sec"). A seat in the House of Lords made from a bag of wool for the Lord Chancellor (and more recently the Lord Speaker). Dates back to the 14th century to symbolise the central importance of the wool trade to the English economy. A major scandal came to light in 1938 when it was discovered that the sack of wool was in fact... a sack of horsehair.
2 Adversary’s force finally upset Yankee soldiers (5)
ENEMY - is E (forcE, "finally") and then upset/overturn Y(ankee) MEN (soldiers
3 Best prayer oddly abandoned by a church elder (9)
PRESBYTER - anagram (oddly) of BEST PRaYER, with the A removed/abandoned
5 A quiet wood (3)
ASH - A and SH (quiet)
6 Drums a fellow viewed with endless fright (7)
TIMPANI - a TIM (fellow) seen with PANIc ("endless" fright)
7 Reportedly regrets trick (4)
RUSE - sounds like (reportedly) RUES (regrets)
8 Goals ultimately amuse defensive player? Something fishy here (11)
STICKLEBACK - S (goalS, "ultimately") TICKLE (amuse) BACK (defensive player) reveals a fish-like answer.
13 Lizard given tea and fruit outside rear of café (9)
CHAMELEON - CHA (tea) and MELON (fruit) going outside E ("rear" of cafE)
14 Bold print I’d employ initially somehow (8)
INTREPID - anagram (somehow) of PRINT ID E (Employ "initially")
16 Like available digs inspiring lessee’s last letter? (7)
NOTELET - NOT LET = available digs, inspiring/taking in E (lesseE's "last")
18 Fibre produced by Rutland town, so it’s said (5)
OAKUM - made by the sound of OAKHAM (Rutland town). Loosely twisted fibre made by untwisting and picking old rope. If that sounds like a fun job, then all you had to do was become a convict or join a workhouse and it was yours. Oakum was then shoved into the seams of (wooden) ships and leaky pipes (and occasionally wounds) with resin or pitch then poured over. The phrase "money for old rope" is not related.
19 Yield readily at first, arrested by police officer (4)
CROP - R (Readily "at first" arrested by COP (police officer)
21 Foreign money one of Napoleon’s marshals raised (3)
YEN - NEY (one of Napoleon’s marshals) raised. He does 19-down up occasionally - worth remembering.
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