johninterred (johninterred) wrote in times_xwd_times,
johninterred
johninterred
times_xwd_times

Times Quick Cryptic No 1459 by Wurm

A good Friday workout from Wurm today, with plenty of cleverness and deception. I enjoyed this a lot, but I suspect some of our less experienced solvers (and maybe even some of our more experienced ones) will struggle to unravel some of the trickier clues . My favourites include 11A, my LOI, 5D and, my clue of the day, 2D. I finished in 5:44, but it felt harder than that. Thank you Wurm for the entertainment. How did everyone else get on?

Definitions underlined in bold italics, (Abc)* indicating anagram of Abc, deletions and [] other indicators.

Across
7 Initially awkward kid in relaxed position (2,4)
AT EASE - Awkward [initially] TEASE (kid).
8 Factory stocking English revolver? (6)
PLANET - PLANT (factory) outside [stocking] E (English). I hesitated a little over this definition. Nothing to do with a gun, of course. But does a planet revolve? Hmm. I suppose an orbiting planet is revolving around the sun. But it did prompt me to look up the formal definition of a planet. So now I know why Pluto isn't one any more.
9 Learner in badly managed Oxford college (8)
MAGDALEN - L (learner) in [badly] (managed)*. Of course [managed] is also sometimes an anagrind. Anyone try to make an anagram of  "L in badly"? As an alumnus and employee of the other place, I enjoyed the surface dig at the Dark blues.
10 Skin to keep dark (4)
HIDE - Double definition.
11 Dumb as leading character in Psycho? (6)
SILENT - My last one in. No you don't need to know the characters in the film. It's a cryptic definition... the leading character of the word, Psycho, is not pronounced. Lovely misleading surface.
13 Canine tooth one has right in middle (5)
CORGI - COG (tooth) I (one) with R (right) [in middle]. Another little trick. You need to separate the "canine" and "tooth".
14 Farm animal in new enclosure (3)
EWE - Hidden in nEW Enclosure.
15 Be likely to consume ultimate in hipster fashion (5)
TREND - TEND (be likely) ouside [to consume] last letter of [ultimately in] hipsteR.
17 Beer taken round a camp (6)
LAAGER - LAGER (beer) [taken round] A. An Africaans word, which may not be familiar to some, but I lived in South Africa for 4 years as a boy, which is how I know it.
19 Went down hill (4)
FELL - Double definition. Jack and Jill spring to mind. I've never understood why they would go up the hill to find water. Down the hill is surely more likely,
20 Blanket a requirement in bad weather? (8)
UMBRELLA - Another double definition, second mildly cryptic, hence the "?".
22 Fastener, one on tie (6)
PINION - PIN (fastener) I (one) ON. Another clue that can be read two ways. Did anyone else try to find a word for "fastener" at first like me?
23 Drunken treats for wine expert? (6)
TASTER - [Drunken] (treats)*.
Down
1 Walk under cover from Athens to Alexandria (4)
STOA - A second hidden word in AthenS TO Alexandria. Blimey. If you took the surface reading literally, it would be a pretty long one! An ancient greek architectural feature, hence the choice of cities. A word I think I learnt from crosswords, it seems to come up rather often.
2 Wicked thing in prison led astray (6)
CANDLE - Lovely clue with another deceptive definition, this one would not be out of place in the 15x15. CAN (prison) (led)* [astray]. My clue of the day. Wicked as in having a wick. Ho ho!
3 Reduced pressure having scrubbed round (8)
DEPLETED - P (pressure) having DELETED (scrubbed) [round]. [On edit: I see this caught lots of people out thinking the definition was "reduced pressure", leading to DEFLATED as the answer. A good learning point - if the wordplay doesn't make sense the your answer is wrong.]
4 Small vessel makes crossing (4)
SPAN - S (small) PAN (cooking vessel). MER (minor eyebrow raise) at this. A span normally refers to only part of a bridge, I think.
5 Hero losing round underneath Big Daddy (6)
FATHER - FAT (big) with HERo  without the o [losing round] [underneath]. Another great clue. Anyone else remember watching Big Daddy (real name Shirley Crabtree) with Giant Haystacks in the wrestling ring on TV?
6 Ideal end, somehow, to meet this? (8)
DEADLINE - (Ideal end)* [somehow] to give you something to meet. Like mine to get this blog done before too many people look for it.
12 One mistakenly printed in bold (8)
INTREPID - I and [mistakenly] (printed)*. Another lovely deceptive surface. The answer has nothing to do with fonts and typefaces.
13 Chaste priest on strike in church (8)
CELIBATE - ELI (crosswordland's favourite priest) [on] BAT (strike) [in] CE (Church of England).
16 Eastern girl said to be delicious thing (6)
ECLAIR - E (Eastern) CLAIR sounds like [said to be] CLAIRE (girl's name).
18 Resistant to some poetry? (6)
AVERSE - A VERSE (some poetry).
20 Careful, naturally, to bury this bone (4)
ULNA - A third hidden word! Hidden in [to bury] CarefUL NAturally.
21 Ship capsized becomes national symbol (4)
LEEK - KEEL (ship) upside down [capsized] becomes LEEK, national symbol of Wales.
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