brnchn (brnchn) wrote in times_xwd_times,
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Times Cryptic No 27966 - Saturday, 1 May 2021. Done by dinner.

Last Saturday was busy for me, and I did this in snatches. So it was an extended solve, but I don’t think it was harder than usual.

My ignorance of 1ac is all encompassing, so I was surprised to discover what the definition referred to!

Thanks to the setter for a very enjoyable puzzle. How did you all get on?

[Read more …]

Notes for newcomers: The Times offers prizes for Saturday Cryptic Crosswords. This blog is posted a week later, after the competition closes. So, please don’t comment here on the current Saturday Cryptic.

Clues are blue, with definitions underlined. Deletions are struck through.

Across
1 Portrays tourist as caustic, perhaps (5,8)
PAINT STRIPPER – PAINTS, TRIPPER.
8 Fatality in plant — bug not involved (4)
LOSS – I’d never heard of a BUGLOSS, but you can see what to do with it!
9 A tap losing pressure — reach with difficulty (2,1,7)
AT A STRETCH – A, TAP without its P, STRETCH = reach.
10 First-class score against spinner (3-5)
TOP-NOTCH – TOP=spinner, NOTCH=score.
11 Two ducks crossing harbour in European city (6)
OPORTO – O’s or ducks, surrounding PORT.
13 Tree died following onset of blizzard — tree in which you'll find rot (10)
BALDERDASH – B from Blizzard, ALDER is a tree, D for died, ASH is another tree.
16 Nobleman ahead of schedule? Not quite (4)
EARL – EARLy. A chestnut.
17 Victor getting in by way of examination (4)
VIVA – V for Victor, in VIA.
18 Initiation of a hand during social event (10)
ADMITTANCE – MITT in A DANCE.
20 Learn about vicious dog in stable (6)
SECURE – CUR in SEE.
22 Did turn briefly in subtle comedy (8)
DROLLERY – ROLLEd, in DRY.
24 Relax wearing mate's fur (10)
CHINCHILLA – CHILL wearing CHINA.
26 Most of group returned in carriage (4)
TRAP – PART of a group, backwards/returned. It’s a bit of a stretch to get from “most” to “part”, but it will do. Edit: I like Kevin's suggestion better. The group is a PARTy. Shorten, and reverse.
27 Actors in rep he reviewed like dancing (13)
TERPSICHOREAN – anagram (reviewed) of ACTORS IN REP HE. Terpsichore was the Greek muse of the dance.

Down
1 In favour of case that's challenging (11)
PROVOCATIVE – PRO, VOCATIVE. I knew Latin had a vocative case. How many other languages do, I wonder?
2 Children's author briefly raised dramatist (5)
IBSEN – NESBIt is the children’s author.
3 Schooled trio at art courses offered here (9)
TRATTORIA – anagram (schooled) of TRIO AT ART. The ART is nicely juxtaposed to the COURSES.
4 Pain in most of mouth and windpipe (7)
TRACHEA – put ACHE in TRAp.
5 Keen on grabbing right start (5)
INTRO – put R in INTO.
6 Amazing things — height seen during revolutionary flower power (9)
PHENOMENA – revolve ANEMONE+P by 180o, and insert H.
7 Fabulous bird to rise quickly? Not half (3)
ROC – ROCket.
12 Actor, in turn, reviewed spy thriller (4,7)
TORN CURTAIN – anagram (reviewed) of ACTOR IN TURN. A Hitchcock film, of course. I wouldn’t have guessed the lead actors.
14 Surprisingly order a nun to leave without paying (2,1,6)
DO A RUNNER – anagram (surprisingly) of ORDER A NUN.
15 Stew at last in bistro? A controversial matter (3,6)
HOT POTATO – HOT POT=stew, AT is itself, O from bistrO.
19 Lincoln has one, note (6,1)
MIDDLE C – ho ho!
21 Distinctive character in quiet hostelry (5)
ETHOS – hidden.
23 Coffee with dish, unlimited (5)
LATTE – drop the outside letters from PLATTER.
25 Buffet voucher doesn't include starter (3)
HIT – drop the C from CHIT.
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  • 26 comments

  • Times Quick Cryptic 1987 by Joker

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