Times Jumbo Cryptic Crossword 1428

If last week’s puzzle had a people and places mini-theme going on, this week’s seems to be flora and fauna. Well, fruits and birds. And colours. Anyway, an easier time of it was had, which made for a decidedly less grumpy alter-ego.

You can find my completed grid below along with explanations of my solutions where I have them. If you’ve got previous Jumbos that have given you grief, then my Just For Fun page might help you. I’ve got some other odds and ends knocking around, so it’s not all crosswords, crosswords, crosswords. If book reviews are your thing, then I’ve got a few over thisaway. If you’d like a story of mine to get you through a spare half hour, then head over thataway.

In the meantime, we’ll head to the answers. TTFN.


Across clues

1. Singer, one acknowledging applause before time? (9)

Answer: BOWERBIRD (i.e. “singer”. It’s a bird, but I can’t see much to qualify it as a songbird.) Solution is BOWER (i.e. “one acknowledging applause”) followed by BIRD (i.e. “time [spent in prison]”).

6. Soft cheese a woman takes in bed (7)

Answer: RICOTTA (i.e. “soft cheese”). Solution is RITA (i.e. “woman”) wrapped around or “taking in” COT (i.e. “bed”), like so: RI(COT)TA.

10. Ways a girl possibly sought at first to capture hearts (5)

Answer: PATHS (i.e. “ways”). Solution is PAT (i.e. “a girl possibly”, specifically a shortened form of Patricia. The “possibly” bit indicates that Pat can also be short for Patrick, a boy’s name) and S (i.e. “sought at first”, i.e. the first letter of  “sought”) wrapped around or “capturing” H (a recognised abbreviation of “hearts” used in some card games), like so: PAT-(H)-S.

13. Vehicle I’d used to carry books? It carries blood! (7)

Answer: CAROTID (i.e. “it carries blood”). Solution is CAR (i.e. “vehicle”) and I’D wrapped around or “carrying” OT (i.e. “books”, specifically the Old Testament of The Bible), like so: CAR-(OT)-I’D.

14. Shade encountered in Milanese piazzas (5)

Answer: SEPIA (i.e. “shade”). “In” indicates the solution is hidden in the clue, like so: MILANE(SE PIA)ZZAS.

15. Old boxer given permit that’s legally transferrable (9)

Answer: ALIENABLE (i.e. “that’s legally transferrable”). Solution is Muhammad ALI (i.e. “old boxer”) followed by ENABLE (i.e. “permit”).

16. It’s unremarkable, but prep school pupils feared having it? (7,2,5,4,5)

Answer: NOTHING TO WRITE HOME ABOUT. Solution satisfies “unremarkable” and “prep school pupils feared having it”.

17. Run into pole – fast! (6)

Answer: STARVE (i.e. “fast”). Solution is R (a recognised abbreviation of “run” used in a number of ball games) placed “into” STAVE (i.e. “pole”), like so: STA(R)VE.

18. Projecting column I coated in stucco (8)

Answer: PILASTER (i.e. “projecting column”). Solution is I placed or “coated in” PLASTER (i.e. “stucco”), like so: P(I)LASTER.

19. No one’s pad in Albert Square is so disgusting (7)

Answer: NOISOME (i.e. “disgusting”). Solution is NO followed by I’S (i.e “[Roman numeral] one” made possessive) and ‘OME (i.e. “pad in Albert Square”, i.e. the word HOME with the aitch dropped like what them cock-er-neys on EastEnders do, innit?).

22. Money suitable for securing game and starchy food (10)

Answer: BREADFRUIT (i.e. “starchy food”). Solution is BREAD (i.e. “money”) followed by FIT (i.e. “suitable”) once it has been wrapped around or “securing” RU (i.e. “game”, specifically Rugby Union), like so: BREAD-F(RU)IT.

23. European woman, one coming ashore with bag (12)

Answer: NETHERLANDER (i.e. “European”). Solution is HER (i.e. “woman”) and LANDER (i.e. “one coming ashore”) placed after NET (i.e. “bag”, both words for obtaining stuff), like so: NET-HER-LANDER.

27. Place where a stripper briefly appears? (5)

Answer: LOCUS (i.e. “place”). Solution is LOCUST (i.e. “stripper”) with the last letter trimmed (indicated by “briefly appears”).

29. Caustic wordplay by man of breeding (7)

Answer: PUNGENT (i.e. “caustic”). Solution is PUN (i.e. “wordplay”) followed by GENT (i.e. “man of breeding”).

30. Prevent retiring daughter concealing her archaeological find (8)

Answer: POTSHERD, which are shards of old pottery (i.e. “archaeological find”). Solution is STOP (i.e. “prevent”) reversed (indicated by “retiring”) and D (a recognised abbreviation of “daughter”) wrapped around or “concealing” HER, like so: POTS-(HER)-D. One I remembered from a previous puzzle, making this an easier get.

32. A French lad ringing about a lack of logical thinking (8)

Answer: UNREASON (i.e. “lack of logical thinking”). Solution is UN (i.e. “A French”, i.e. the masculine form of “a” in French) and SON (i.e. “lad”) wrapped around or “ringing” RE (i.e. “about” – think email replies) and A, like so: UN-(RE-A)-SON.

34. Cooked most tropical fruit (7)

Answer: APRICOT (i.e. “fruit”). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “cooked”) of TROPICAL once the last letter has been removed (indicated by “most”).

36. Strip firearm (5)

Answer: RIFLE. Solution satisfies “[to] strip” and “firearm”.

39. Vehicle thief collects favourite political candidate from afar? (12)

Answer: CARPETBAGGER (i.e. “political candidate from afar” – Donald Trump would be a good example of one, given he isn’t really seen as a Republican). Solution is CAR (i.e. “vehicle”) and BAGGER (i.e. “thief”) wrapped around or “collecting” PET (i.e. “favourite”), like so: CAR-(PET)-BAGGER.

41. Belittled and frustrated, the writer’s at home in this (10)

Answer: DIMINISHED (i.e. “belittled”). Solution is DISHED (i.e. “frustrated”, as in having outwitted or defeated an opponent) wrapped around (indicated by “…in this”) I’M IN (i.e. “the writer’s at home”, taken from the point of view of the setter), like so: D(I’M-IN)ISHED.

44. Liberal academic given employment (7)

Answer: PROFUSE (i.e. “liberal”). Solution is PROF (i.e. “academic”, specifically a shorted form of “professor”) followed by USE (i.e. “employment”).

46. The domain one abandoned sadly for Macbeth’s Cawdor? (8)

Answer: THANEDOM (i.e. “the domain… [of] …Macbeth’s Cawdor). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “sadly”) of THE DOMAIN once the I has been removed (indicated by “[Roman numeral] one abandoned”). Nicely worked.

48. Present old footballer with ring in retirement (6)

Answer: BESTOW (i.e. “present”). Solution is George BEST (i.e. “old footballer”) followed by W (a recognised abbreviation of “with”) and O (i.e. “ring”) once these latter two have been reversed (indicated by “in retirement”), like so: BEST-O-W.

50. Become agitated carelessly removing one’s clothing from washing machine? (3,4,8,2,1,5)

Answer: GET ONES KNICKERS IN A TWIST. Solution satisfies “become agitated” and “carelessly removing one’s clothing from washing machine”. Also descriptive of me most weekends when I’m putting these posts together.

53. Surprisingly happy with old car and rejected books (9)

Answer: APOCRYPHA (i.e. “rejected books”). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “surprisingly”) of HAPPY, O (a recognised abbreviation of “old”) and CAR.

54. Hang about in south east resort before run (5)

Answer: HOVER (i.e. “hang about”). Solution is HOVE (i.e. “south east resort”) followed by R (a recognised abbreviation of “run” used in a number of ball games).

55. Popular view voiced by Republican, a provoker of action (7)

Answer: INCITER (i.e. “provoker of action”). Solution is IN (i.e. “popular”) followed by CITE (i.e. “view voiced”, i.e. a homophone of SIGHT) and R (a recognised abbreviation of “Republican”).

56. High-flyer changes sides – what a bore (5)

Answer: EAGRE (i.e. a “bore” or sudden rise of the tide in a river). Solution is EAGLE (i.e. “high-flyer”) with the L replaced with R (indicated by “changes sides”, L and R being recognised abbreviations of “left” and “right” respectively).

57. For a seamstress they’re not entirely unnecessary (7)

Answer: NEEDLES. Solution is NEEDLESS (i.e. “unnecessary”) with the last letter removed (indicated by “not entirely”).

58. Assuasive English gang girl that is not without heart (9)

Answer: EMOLLIENT (i.e. “assuasive”). Solution is E (a recognised abbreviation of “English”) followed by MOLL (i.e. “gang girl”) then IE (i.e. “that is”, i.e. …um… “i.e.”) and NT (i.e. “not without heart”, i.e. the word NOT with the middle letter removed).

Down clues

1. Meaty product of Berkshire philosopher? (5)

Answer: BACON. Solution satisfies “meaty product” and “Berkshire philosopher”, namely Francis BACON.

2. Best to reconnoitre plot? Nothing could be more awful (5-4,8)

Answer: WORST-CASE SCENARIO (i.e. “nothing could be more awful”). Clue plays on how “reconnoitring” something is to CASE it, and how a “plot” can be a SCENARIO. Within the context of the clue, if “nothing could be more awful” when reconnoitring a plot, it could be described as a WORST-CASE SCENARIO. Clunky, but you get the idea. Ish.

3. Recovered stored information? It’s what the Lab did? (9)

Answer: RETRIEVED. Solution satisfies “recovered stored information” and “what the Lab did”. A bit sneaky from the setter here. “Lab” is a recognised abbreviation of the Canadian region of Labrador. You also get Labrador retrievers. Join the dots.

4. Once disgraceful gibe delivered in pub (6)

Answer: INDIGN (i.e. a poetic or archaic word (indicated by “once”) for “disgraceful”). Solution is DIG (i.e. “gibe”) placed or “delivered” in INN, like so: IN(DIG)N.

5. Girl’s status and character (11)

Answer: DISPOSITION (i.e. “character”). When written as DI’S POSITION, the solution also satisfies “girl’s status”.

6. Final send-off for heretic connected with bank (8)

Answer: RIPARIAN (i.e. “connected with [river] bank”). Solution is RIP (i.e. “final send-off”, specifically a recognised abbreviation of Rest In Peace) followed by ARIAN (i.e. “heretic”). Not a word that leapt out at me. A brute force of my Chambers was needed once I’d gotten all the intersecting letters.

7. Bird identified by lieutenant, one wearing outdoor garment (4,3)

Answer: COAL TIT (i.e. “bird”). Solution is LT (a recognised abbreviation of “lieutenant”) and I (i.e. “[Roman numeral] one”) placed in or “wearing” COAT (i.e. “outdoor garment”), like so: COA(LT-I)T.

8. Her chap set out to secure current post at school (11)

Answer: TEACHERSHIP (i.e. “post at school”). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “out”) of HER CHAP SET wrapped around or “securing” I (a recognised abbreviation of “[electrical] current”), like so: TEACHERSH(I)P.

9. A former country with popular old king? It’s what Anatolia was (4,5)

Answer: ASIA MINOR (i.e. “it’s what Anatolia was”). Solution is A followed by SIAM (i.e. “former country”), then IN (i.e. “popular”), then O (a recognised abbreviation of “old”) and R (ditto Rex, i.e. “king”).

10. Judge given notes in largely Carthaginian language (7)

Answer: PUNJABI (i.e. “language”). Solution is J (a recognised abbreviation of “judge”) and A and B (i.e. both musical “notes”) placed “in” PUNIC (i.e. “Carthaginian”) once the last letter has been removed (indicated by “largely”), like so: PUN(J-A-B)I.

11. Forbidden book, not acceptable in Chinese philosophy (5)

Answer: TABOO (i.e. “forbidden”). Solution is BOOK with the OK removed (indicated by “not acceptable”) and the remainder placed “in” TAO (i.e. “Chinese philosophy”), like so: TA(BO)O.

12. Lover demanding attention in parts of the West (10)

Answer: SWEETHEART (i.e. “lover”). Solution is EAR (i.e. “attention”) placed “in” an anagram (indicated by “parts of”) of THE WEST, like so: SWEETH(EAR)T.

17. Prophetess lives over by the lake (5)

Answer: SIBYL (i.e. “prophetess”). Solution is IS (i.e. “lives”) reversed (indicated by “over”) and followed by BY, then L (a recognised abbreviation of “lake”), like so: SI-BY-L.

20. A Scottish honour, tho Forester held it, unexpectedly (5,2,3,7)

Answer: ORDER OF THE THISTLE (i.e. “a Scottish honour”). “Unexpectedly” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of THO FORESTER HELD IT.

21. Loses footing absorbing last of info for Cambridge exam (6)

Answer: TRIPOS (i.e. “Cambridge exam”). Solution is TRIPS (i.e. “loses footing”) wrapped around or “absorbing” O (i.e. “last of info”, i.e. the last letter of “info”), like so: TRIP(O)S.

24. Secure by intimidation in text or tweet (6)

Answer: EXTORT (i.e. “secure by intimidation”). “In” indicates the solution is hidden in the clue, like so: T(EXT OR T)WEET.

25. Hate airline coming over house by river (5)

Answer: ABHOR (i.e. “hate”). Solution is BA (i.e. “airline”, specifically British Airways) reversed (indicated by “coming over”) and followed by HO (a recognised abbreviation of “house”) and R (ditto “river”), like so: AB-HO-R.

26. Lavishly supply short man with alcoholic drink (6)

Answer: REGALE (i.e. “lavishly supply”). Solution is REG (i.e. “short man”, specifically a shortened form of Reginald) followed by ALE (i.e. “alcoholic drink”).

28. Kid influenced by power or moral force, we hear (5)

Answer: SUEDE (i.e. “kid [leather]”). “We hear” indicates homophone. Solution is a homophone of SWAYED (i.e. “influenced by power or moral force”).

31. Shabby-sounding provider of starch in Scotland (6)

Answer: TATTIE (i.e. “provider of starch in Scotland”, namely a Scots word for potato). “Sounding” indicates homophone. Solution is a homophone of TATTY (i.e. “shabby”).

33. Singer’s dark period buffeted by wind (11)

Answer: NIGHTINGALE (i.e. “singer” – birds again, but at least this one is known for its song). Solution is NIGHT (i.e. “dark period”) followed by IN GALE (i.e. “buffeted by wind”).

35. Decorative work of one in hard-wearing trousers on lake (11)

Answer: CHINOISERIE (i.e. “decorative work”). Solution is I (i.e. “[Roman numeral] one”) placed “in” CHINOS (i.e. “hard-wearing trousers”) and followed by ERIE (one of the Great “Lakes”), like so: CHINO(I)S-ERIE. Another I remembered from a previous puzzle, if I’m honest, making this an easier get than it ought to have been.

37. Finance demise that hurt (5)

Answer: ENDOW (i.e. “finance”). Solution is END (i.e. “demise”) followed by OW! (i.e. “that hurt”).

38. Rascal initially scaring head girl? (10)

Answer: SCAPEGRACE (i.e. “rascal”). Solution is S (i.e. “initially scaring”, i.e. the first letter of “scaring”) followed by CAPE (i.e. “head”, as in the geographical feature) and GRACE (i.e. “girl”). Can’t say I’ve seen this word out in the wild. I like it!

40. British painter’s fancy brooch (9)

Answer: BREASTPIN (i.e. “brooch”). Solution is BR (a recognised abbreviation of “British”) followed by an anagram (indicated by “fancy”) of PAINTER’S, like so: BR-EASTPIN.

42. The writer would clean it out just the same (9)

Answer: IDENTICAL (i.e. “just the same”). Solution is I’D (i.e. “the writer would”, taken from the point of view of the setter) followed by an anagram (indicated by “out”) of CLEAN IT, like so: I’D-ENTICAL.

43. Books about court actions? (8)

Answer: RESERVES (i.e. “books” a table in a restaurant, for example). Solution is RE (i.e. “about” – again, think email replies) followed by SERVES (i.e. “[tennis] court actions”).

45. Disconcert peacekeepers, at no time raising resistance (7)

Answer: UNNERVE (i.e. “disconcert”). Solution is UN (i.e. “peacekeepers”, specifically the United Nations) followed by NEVER (i.e. “at no time”) once the R (a recognised abbreviation of electrical “resistance”) has been “raised” a couple of notches, this being a down clue, like so: UN-NERVE.

47. Everyone taking in salmon and strong drink (7)

Answer: ALCOHOL (i.e. “strong drink”). Solution is ALL (i.e. “everyone”) wrapped around or “taking in” COHO (i.e. a Pacific “salmon”), like so: AL(COHO)L.

49. A shade 4, changing second name to Oscar (6)

Answer: INDIGO (i.e. “a shade”). The solution to 4d is INDIGN. Solution is 4d with the “second” N (a recognised abbreviation of “name”) changed to O (“Oscar” in the phonetic alphabet), like so: INDIG(N) => INDIG(O).

51. Heavyweight key locking up husband’s skimpy beachwear (5)

Answer: THONG (i.e. “skimpy beachwear”). Solution is TON (i.e. “heavyweight”) and G (a musical “key”) wrapped around or “locking up” H (a recognised abbreviation of “husband”), like so: T(H)ON-G. I’m more of a mankini fella myself, being a little self-conscious.

52. Card call-girl carries round (5)

Answer: TAROT (i.e. “card”). Solution is TART (i.e. “call-girl”) wrapped around or “carrying” O (i.e. “round”), like so: TAR(O)T.

11 thoughts on “Times Jumbo Cryptic Crossword 1428

  1. Relatively easy this week. At least we had UNREASON rather than outreason! I would have had it finished mid-afternoon but got stumped on 27a LOCUS and 28d SUEDE for quite a time. Couldn’t get past 27a being LOCAL, which I just knew was wrong. ☹️ Took a concerted effort at bedtime to send me off to sleep happy 😁

    1. I must admit a smile broke out when I saw UNREASON in the same region as GET ONES KNICKERS IN A TWIST, what with my grump last week. If I see PIPE DOWN and POLL on the same row next week, I’ll start getting paranoid. – LP

    1. Agreed 2d wasn’t a classic. I read the clue along the lines of “Best at doing x? Goodness, no! Nobody could have been worse”. Doesn’t necessarily lead to the worst-case scenario if everyone was equally awful, but that’s me splitting hairs. I think the setter was having a hard time working “worst” into the clue without having to use the word “worst”. – LP

  2. Apologies if this is a duplication, but regarding the 17a clue in crossword number 1426, I emailed the crossword editor and he admitted that the clue was wrong:

    Dear sir,

     Thank you for your query about this.

    The clue should have read

    17        Small-scale rebellion, deposing leading pair (4)

    I have no idea how the published clue slipped through!

    Many apologies

    Richard Rogan

    Crossword editor

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