Times Jumbo Cryptic Crossword 1427


Links: Just For Fun. Some book reviews. Story.


Across clues

1. Defenceless but not hurt when horse flees (7)

Answer: UNARMED (i.e. “defenceless”). Solution is UNHARMED (i.e. “not hurt”) once the H has been removed (indicated by “when horse flees” – H being a recognised abbreviation of “horse”).

5. Romp curtailed by French girlfriend in city (7)

Answer: LARAMIE (i.e. a “city” in Wyoming, USA. A city with a population of barely 30,000 people according to the last census.) Solution is LARK (i.e. “romp”) with the last letter removed (indicated by “curtailed”) and followed by AMIE (i.e. “French girlfriend”, i.e. the French for “girlfriend”), like so: LAR-AMIE. A sign of the rubbish to come.

9. Friend across pond welcomes celebrated flyer (7)

Answer: BUSTARD (i.e. “flyer”). Solution is BUD (i.e. “friend across pond”, referring to how Americans stereotypically call their friends buds or buddies) wrapped around or “welcoming” STAR (i.e. “celebrated”), like so: BU(STAR)D.

13. Maiden is deity accepting writer not well directed (11)

Answer: MISGOVERNED (i.e. “not well directed”). Solution is M (a recognised abbreviation of “maiden” used in cricket) followed by IS, then GOD (i.e. “deity”) once it has been wrapped around or “accepting” Jules VERNE (i.e. “writer”), like so: M-IS-GO(VERNE)D.

14. Back in first of several additional residences (6,5)

Answer: SECOND HOMES (i.e. “additional residences”). Solution is SECOND (i.e. to “back”) followed by HOME (i.e. “in”, i.e. “at home”) and S (i.e. “first of several”, i.e. the first letter of “several”).

15. Rocket incorporating new submarine detection system (5)

Answer: SONAR (i.e. “submarine detection system”). Solution is SOAR (i.e. “rocket”) wrapped around or “incorporating” N (a recognised abbreviation of “new”), like so: SO(N)AR.

16. Composer admits small offence to French king (7)

Answer: Gioachino ROSSINI (i.e. “composer”). Solution is ROI (i.e. “French king”, i.e. the French for “king”) wrapped around or “admitting” S (a recognised abbreviation of “small”) and SIN (i.e. “offence”), like so: RO(S-SIN)I.

17. Russian empress one departing Mediterranean port (9)

Answer: ALEXANDRA Feodorovna (i.e. “Russian empress”). Solution is ALEXANDRIA (i.e. “Mediterranean port”) with the I removed (indicated by “[Roman numeral] one departing…”).

18. Anxious to enjoy a drama by Williams (4,1,3,2,1,3,3,4)

Answer: LIKE A CAT ON A HOT TIN ROOF. Solution satisfies “anxious” and “enjoy a drama by [Tennessee] Williams”.

23. Evil claims a cleaner in church property (8)

Answer: VICARAGE (i.e. “church property”). Solution is VICE (i.e. “evil”) wrapped around or “claiming” A and RAG (i.e. “cleaner”), like so: VIC(A-RAG)E.

25. Boy and girl love workroom (6)

Answer: STUDIO (i.e. “workroom”). Solution is STU and DI (i.e. “boy and girl”, respective shortened forms of Stuart and Diana) followed by O (i.e. “love”, i.e. a zero score in tennis).

27. Fuel can very hot inside (7)

Answer: GASOHOL (i.e. “fuel”). Solution is GAOL (i.e. “can”) with SO (i.e. “very”) and H (a recognised abbreviation of “hot”) placed “inside”, like so: GA(SO-H)OL.

30. One wearing black recalled proud mother (5)

Answer: NIOBE. One solely for the classicists, it seems. In Greek mythology Niobe was a mother whose overbearing pride in her children saw them murdered. Then, in her grief, Niobe was turned to stone. Those Greeks, eh? Fun. Chalk one to my Bradfords here, which listed Niobe as a “mourner”. “One wearing black” is tenuous if you ask me. If I’m missing something in Homer’s Iliad that qualifies this then blame my decidedly non-classical education.
[EDIT: Thanks to Andrew in the comments for clarifying this one. “One wearing black recalled” is the Roman numeral I (i.e. “one”) placed in or “wearing” EBON (i.e.”black”) and the whole reversed (indicated by “recalled”), like so: N(I)OBE. Cheers, Andrew! – LP]

32. Knitted footwear allowing stars to conserve energy (7)

Answer: BOOTEES (i.e. “knitted footwear”). Solution is BOOTES (a constellation, i.e. “stars”) wrapped around or “conserving” E (a recognised abbreviation of “energy”), like so: BOOT(E)ES.

33. One to examine tickets for theatrical caller? (9)

Answer: INSPECTOR. Solution satisfies “one to examine tickets” and “theatrical caller”, referring to the stage play An Inspector Calls by J.B. Priestley.

35. Divert sports team approaching course (9)

Answer: SIDETRACK (i.e. “divert”). Solution is SIDE (i.e. “sports team”) followed by TRACK (i.e. “course”).

36. Openings in colonnade showing dull interior (7)

Answer: STOMATA (i.e. “openings”). Solution is STOA (i.e. “colonnade”) wrapped around MAT (i.e. “dull” – can be spelled “matte”, “matt” or “mat”), like so: STO(MAT)A.

37. Woman, fantastic, needing time to appear earlier (5)

Answer: GRETA (i.e. “woman”). Solution is GREAT (i.e. “fantastic”) with the T (a recognised abbreviation of “time”) moved back a notch (indicated by “…to appear earlier”).

38. Train ferries coin between terminals in Stoke and Carlisle (7)

Answer: EDUCATE (i.e. “train”). Solution is DUCAT (i.e. “coin”) placed “between” E and E (i.e. “terminals in Stoke and Carlisle”, i.e. the last letters of “Stoke” and “Carlisle”), like so: E-(DUCAT)-E.

40. Over there participating in activity on Derwent (6)

Answer: YONDER (i.e. “over there”). “Participating in” indicates the solution is hidden in the clue, like so: ACTIVIT(Y ON DER)WENT.

41. Dump Beethoven’s Fifth amid unknown music (8)

Answer: ANTIPHON (i.e. “music”). Solution is TIP (i.e. “dump”) and H (i.e. “Beethoven’s fifth”, i.e. the fifth letter of “Beethoven”, ignoring the misleading capitalisation) placed “amid” ANON (i.e. “unknown”, i.e. an abbreviated form of “anonymous”), like so: AN(TIP-H)ON. This has appeared a few times now, making this one an easier get than it ought to have been.

44. Tackle problem resolutely – emulate matador’s hands-on approach? (4,3,4,2,3,5)

Answer: TAKE THE BULL BY THE HORNS. Solution satisfies “tackle problem resolutely” and “emulate matador’s hands-on approach”.

48. Citadel with excellent fencing or one with stronger premises (1,8)

Answer: A FORTIORI (Latin for “with stronger premises”). Solution is FORT (i.e. “citadel”) placed in or being “fenced” by AI (i.e. “excellent”, i.e. A1 with the 1 replaced by the Roman numeral I) and then followed by OR and I (i.e. another Roman numeral “one”), like so: A(FORT)I-OR-I. More for the classicists, there.

50. Piece in good works about divine persons (7)

Answer: ODDMENT (i.e. “piece”). Solution is OT (i.e. “good works”, specifically the Old Testament of The Bible) wrapped “about” DD (i.e. “divine”, i.e. a recognised abbreviation of “Divinitatus Doctor” I’ve seen used in a few puzzles recently) and MEN (i.e. “persons”), like so: O(DD-MEN)T.

53. Far side of the lake is spooky (5)

Answer: EERIE (i.e. “spooky”). Solution is E (i.e. “far side of the”, i.e. the last letter of “the”) followed by the Great “Lake” ERIE. Horror writer Steve Rasnic Tem would be proud.

54. Nausea presumably coming in waves (11)

Answer: SEASICKNESS. Clue riffs on how “waves” can also mean the waves of the sea. You get the idea.

55. Legendary abductor greeting solitary king and churchgoer (11)

Answer: PARISHIONER (i.e. “churchgoer”). Solution is PARIS (i.e. “legendary abductor” of Helen of Troy in Greek mythology – yet more for the classicists) followed by HI (i.e. “greeting”) then ONE (i.e. “solitary”) and R (i.e. “king”, specifically a recognised abbreviation of “Rex”).

56. Most neat, one passes on dry clothes (7)

Answer: TIDIEST (i.e. “most neat”). Solution is I (i.e. “[Roman numeral] one”) and DIES (i.e. “passes on”) placed in or being “clothed” by TT (i.e. “dry”, i.e. a recognised abbreviation of “tee-total”), like so: T(I-DIES)T.

57. Secret repositioning with parking reserved for staff (7)

Answer: SCEPTRE (i.e. “staff”). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “repositioning”) of SECRET wrapped around or “reserving” P (a recognised abbreviation of “parking” used in signage), like so: SCE(P)TRE.

58. Sound advice to boating companion, graceful creature (3,4)

Answer: ROE DEER (i.e. “graceful creature”). “Sound” indicates homophone. Solution is a homophone of ROW DEAR (i.e. “advice to boating companion”).

Down clues

1. Bare man thrown in Welsh river (6)

Answer: UNMASK (i.e. “[to] bare”). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “thrown”) of MAN placed “in” USK (i.e. “Welsh river”), like so: U(NMA)SK.

2. Club in weapons collection (7)

Answer: ARSENAL. Solution satisfies “[football] club” and “weapons collection”.

3. Sail low – new angle right (9)

Answer: MOONRAKER (i.e. “sail”). Solution is MOO (i.e. to “low” – setters love referring to cows as “lowers” in their clues) followed by N (a recognised abbreviation of “new”), then RAKE (i.e. “angle” – one of several of rake’s definitions) and R (a recognised abbreviation of “right”).

4. Gloomy doctor given attention (5)

Answer: DREAR (i.e. “gloomy”). Solution is DR (a recognised abbreviation of “doctor”) followed by EAR (i.e. “attention”).

5. Official verses and unfinished scores (8)

Answer: LINESMAN (i.e. “official” of some sports games). Solution is LINES (i.e. “verses”) followed by MANY (i.e. “scores”) once its last letter has been removed (indicated by “unfinished”), like so: LINES-MAN.

6. Almost set one, maybe two bones? (5)

Answer: RADII (i.e. “maybe two bones”, referring to the plural form of a “radius” bone). Solution is RADIO (i.e. device or “set”) with the final letter removed (indicated by “almost”) and followed by I (i.e. “[Roman numeral] one”), like so: RADI-I.

7. Shambles in area in Sicilian city (7)

Answer: MESSINA (i.e. “Sicilian city”). Solution is MESS (i.e. “shambles”) followed by IN and A (a recognised abbreviation of “area”).

8. Demented alcoholic stage concerned with final events (14)

Answer: ESCHATOLOGICAL (i.e. “concerned with final events” in theology). “Demented” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of ALCOHOLIC STAGE.

9. Sweet roll with chopped dates good for diet (9)

Answer: BUNDESTAG (i.e. “diet” – a diet can mean parliament, in this case the one in Germany). Solution is BUN (i.e. “sweet roll”) followed by an anagram (indicated by “chopped”) of DATES, then G (a recognised abbreviation of “good”), like so: BUN-DESTA-G.

10. Unstressed syllable in school was cut (5)

Answer: SCHWA (i.e. “unstressed syllable”). Solution is SCH (a recognised abbreviation of “school”) followed by WAS once the last letter has been removed (indicated by “cut”), like so: SCH-WA. Made-to-fit rubbish to help the setter out of a tight spot, but thankfully the wordplay was pretty obvious.

11. Prepared for war theatre, MOD ordered choppers (5,2,3,5)

Answer: ARMED TO THE TEETH (i.e. “prepared for war”). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “ordered”) of THEATRE MOD followed by TEETH (i.e. “choppers”), like so: ARMEDTOTHE-TEETH.

12. Female following obese man sent north (7)

Answer: DISTAFF (i.e. “female” side of a family, it says here. The male side, in case you were wondering, is the spear side). Solution is F (a recognised abbreviation of “female” – a bit of recursion there) followed by FAT SID (i.e. “obese man”). The whole is then reversed (indicated by “sent north” – this being a down clue), like so: DIS-TAF-F.

19. Subject of ace supporter nursing broken leg (7)

Solution: ALGEBRA (i.e. “subject”). Solution is A (a recognised abbreviation of “ace” used on playing cards) and BRA (i.e. “supporter”) wrapped around or “nursing” an anagram (indicated by “broken”) of LEG, like so: A-(LGE)-BRA.

20. Some elite academic betrayal, maybe, better for logic? (9)

Answer: OUTREASON (i.e. “[to] better [someone] for logic”). The solution, as far as I can make out, when read as OU TREASON, kind-of-perhaps-maybe-ish satisfies “some elite academic betrayal, maybe” – OU being the Open University. Not 100% sure, if I’m honest, given that the three dictionaries I have (Chambers, Oxford and an old Collins Concise) do not accept outreason as a word. Nor does Microsoft Word by the looks of it. If this turns out to be the solution, then, frankly, what a crock of shit.
[EDIT: Thanks to Mick and Sue in the comments for highlighting that OU is more likely to be Oxford University given the mention of “elite”. That’s not to belittle anyone bettering themselves through the Open University, mind. It’s just the prejudice of this particular setter. – LP]

21. Obtains inside information given rise in savings (4,3)

Answer: NEST EGG (i.e. “savings”). Solution is GETS (i.e. “obtains”) placed “inside” of GEN (i.e. “information”) and the whole then reversed (indicated by “given rise” – this being a down clue), like so: NE(STEG)G. A rare clue in this puzzle that scans really well.

22. Welshman, embracing English church, to disappear slowly (8)

Answer: EVANESCE (i.e. “to disappear slowly”). I’m not 100% sure but my solution is EVAN (i.e. “Welshman”) followed by a possessive E’S (i.e. “embracing English”), then CE (i.e. “church”, specifically the Church of England). I sincerely hope a better solution comes to light because, as it stands, this is another clue to file under “crock of shit”.
[EDIT: Thanks to Steve in the comments for nailing this one. Welshman is EVANS, not EVAN. When wrapped around E for “English”, and followed by CE as described, you get EVAN(E)S-CE. Cheers, Steve! – LP]

24. Mad about noisy estate outside fantasy realm (5-6-4)

Answer: CLOUD-CUCKOO-LAND (i.e. “fantasy realm”). Solution is C (a recognised abbreviation of circa, i.e. “about”), LOUD (i.e. “noisy”) and LAND (i.e. “estate”) all placed “outside” of CUCKOO (i.e. “mad”), like so: C-LOUD-(CUCKOO)-LAND.

26. Find nightclub dead (9)

Answer: DISCOVERY (i.e. “find”). Solution is DISCO (i.e. “nightclub”) followed by VERY (i.e. “dead” as in being dead tired of this setter already).

28. Whence one cross, in traditional tales, drops from sky (8)

Answer: LORRAINE, referring to a two-barred “cross” used in heraldry. LORRAINE is also a region of France from “whence” it came. Solution is RAIN (i.e. “drops from sky”) placed “in” LORE (i.e. “traditional tales”), like so: LOR(RAIN)E.

29. Company after £500 in shady deal (6,8)

Answer: MONKEY BUSINESS (i.e. “shady deal”). Solution is BUSINESS (i.e. “company”) placed “after” MONKEY (i.e. “£500” in Cockneyland).

31. Perhaps wide court passage (7)

Answer: EXTRACT (i.e. “passage”). Solution is EXTRA (i.e. “perhaps wide”, referring to an extra run given in cricket for wide deliveries, among other things) followed by CT (a recognised abbreviation of “court”).

34. Plug firm (7)

Answer: STAUNCH. Solution satisfies “plug” as in to staunch bleeding and “firm” as in a staunch believer of something.

39. Energy indeed has missile right out in orbit (3,6)

Answer: EYE SOCKET (i.e. “orbit”). Solution is E (a recognised abbreviation of “energy”) followed by YES (i.e. “indeed”) and ROCKET (i.e. “missile”) once the R has been removed (indicated by “right out”, R being a recognised abbreviation of “right”), like so: E-YES-OCKET.

42. Hebrew king brought up in island location (9)

Answer: ISRAELITE (i.e. “Hebrew”). Solution is LEAR (i.e. “king”, i.e. Shakespeare’s King Lear) which is reversed (indicated by “brought up” – this being a down clue) and placed “in” I (a recognised abbreviation of “island”) and SITE (i.e. “location”), like so: I-S(RAEL)ITE.

43. Sandalwood used for this stretcher? (8)

Answer: SHOETREE, a support placed in shoes to help keep their shape, i.e. “stretcher”. Clue riddles on how “sandals” are a kind of SHOE and “wood” comes from a TREE. You get the idea.

44. Bird coming round managed second journey (7)

Answer: TRANSIT (i.e. “journey”). Solution is TIT (i.e. “bird”) wrapped or “coming round” RAN (i.e. “managed”) and S (a recognised abbreviation of “second”), like so: T(RAN-S)IT.

45. Gander appears with eagle’s wings (4-3)

Answer: LOOK-SEE (i.e. “gander”). Solution is LOOKS (i.e. “appears”) followed by E and E (i.e. “eagle’s wings”, i.e. the first and last letters of “eagle”).

46. One in medical administration’s year with cartel in south east (7)

Answer: SYRINGE (i.e. “one [used] in medical administration” of, say, a vaccine). Solution is Y (a recognised abbreviation of “year”) and RING (i.e. “cartel”) both placed “in” SE (a recognised abbreviation of “south east”), like so: S(Y-RING)E.

47. Monkey’s mistake, sheltering under tree top (6)

Answer: TERROR (i.e. “monkey”, as in a scamp or rascal). Solution is ERROR (i.e. “mistake”) “sheltering under” T (i.e. “tree top”, i.e. the first letter of “tree”), like so: T-ERROR.

49. Material either of two writers sent up (5)

Answer: TOILE (i.e. “material”). Solution is ELIOT (i.e. “either of two writers”, being George and T.S.) reversed (indicated by “sent up” – this being a down clue).

51. Tyrant dropping sulphur in warehouse (5)

Answer: DEPOT (i.e. “warehouse”). Solution is DESPOT (i.e. “tyrant”) with the S removed (indicated by “dropping sulphur” – S being the chemical symbol of “sulphur”).

52. Stunner posed again looking northward (5)

Answer: TASER (i.e. “stunner”). Solution is RESAT (i.e. “posed again”) reversed (indicated by “looking northward” – this being a down clue).

11 thoughts on “Times Jumbo Cryptic Crossword 1427

  1. 22d I think you are being a bit harsh to the setter, The Welshman is “Evans” rather than Evan I think? So Evan(E)sCE…?

    1. …my comma above should have been a full stop – and anyway, congratulations on finishing the puzzle so quickly, LP. It often takes me nearly all week 🙂

      1. Thanks, Steve. Apologies for the salty tone. I’d come to the puzzle in a grump and had lost all patience for this setter’s schtick by the end of it: the people and places (including a city that I doubt would threaten the top 1000 US cities by population), the classics, the made-to-fit words, the made-up word, the repeated solutions… ugh! It’s not the worst puzzle I’ve completed since doing these posts, just one that really, really rubbed me up the wrong way. Thanks for EVANESCE. I’ll update the post to update the solution. Have a good ‘un! – LP

  2. Well, it took me ages to get SCHWA, GASOHOL and ANTIPHON but the rest of it was fairly bland. My English Dictionary app has outreason so can’t really complain about that one. I took OU to mean Oxford, which gives sense to elite academic, but a crap clue all the same.

    1. Thanks, Mick. I’ve updated the post re: Oxford. As I’ve mentioned in my comment to Sue, you could add “out-” to pretty much any action to produce a word that is technically valid. In the near-infinite space of the internet that means a site or app can afford to cover every prefix and verb combination and give a meaning. A printed dictionary, however, forces lexicographers to select only the words people are likely to use. I’ll admit I’m a stick-in-the-mud purist, but I want the words and phrases I’m solving in a crossword to be recognised in a printed dictionary somewhere, not just something that is semantically possible. – LP

  3. Hi Lucian. I agree with your opinion of 20d. I couldn’t solve it either, and had to resort to an online forum to get the answer. I’d never come across OUTREASON as a word. The parsing is correct, but I think in this case OU refers to Oxford University, which is considerably more “elite” that the Open University!

    1. Thanks, Sue. I’ve updated the post. The setter could argue that “out-” can be prefixed to pretty much any verb to produce a valid word, like saying whoever coined “antidisestablishmentarianism” was rather proud of outprefixing and outsuffixing their peers. The words are nonsense, but they get the meaning across. To me, though, “outreason” is the kind of word one resorts to when the correct word or phrase doesn’t come to mind, the kind of logic a four-year-old would employ when constructing a sentence. Nobody would say “Ha! I have outreasoned you. Take that, Plato!” They would say they’d won the argument. That said, Chambers recognises rubbish words like “garagist” that nobody ever uses so there might be a dictionary somewhere that bails the setter out. – LP

  4. I think Niobe is ok. Black is EBON wearing one (I) so EBO(I) N returned N(I)OBE is a proud mother (also a lovely coloured Clematis)

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