Times Jumbo Cryptic Crossword 1609

A toughie this week, but one that was pleasant enough to chip away at during the day.

You can find my completed grid below along with explanations of my solutions where I have them. I hope you find them helpful. If a recent Jumbo has given you the horrors then you might find my Just For Fun page of use, where you’ll find links to solutions to hundreds of the things.

Thanks again for the kind words and input. It’s always interesting to hear the thoughts of other solvers once the dust has settled. Till next time, stay safe out there kids.


Across clues

  1. Bad feeling, locked in taxi in high temperature (5,5)

Answer: CABIN FEVER (i.e. “bad feeling, locked in”). Solution is CAB (i.e. “taxi”) followed by IN, then FEVER (i.e. “high temperature”).

  1. Junior officer hit worker, perhaps a civilian (12)

Answer: NON-COMBATANT (i.e. “a civilian” during wartime). Solution is NON-COM (i.e. “junior officer”, short for a non-commissioned officer) followed by BAT (i.e. “hit”) and ANT (i.e. “worker, perhaps” – other flavours of ant are available).

  1. Hair that is short and curly (7)

Answer: PIGTAIL. Solution satisfies “hair” and “that is short and curly”, referring to the tail of a pig.

  1. Loudly disapprove of unproductive sort of logic (7)

Answer: BOOLEAN (i.e. “sort of logic”, and the basis of pretty much every programming language going). Solution is BOO (i.e. “loudly disapprove”) followed by LEAN (i.e. “unproductive”).

  1. Subtle Greek character skipped away from head (7)

Answer: NUANCED (i.e. “subtle”). Solution is NU (i.e. “Greek character”, specifically the thirteenth letter of the Greek alphabet) followed by DANCED (i.e. “skipped”) once the first letter has been removed (indicated by “away from head”), like so: NU-ANCED.

  1. Drop flier back (4)

Answer: DRIB (i.e. a “drop” or trickle). Solution is BIRD (i.e. “flier”) reversed (indicated by “back”).

  1. Bog’s depths initially repel (6)

Answer: OFFEND (i.e. “repel”). Solution is OF FEN (i.e. “bog’s”, read as “of a bog”) followed by D (i.e. “depths initially”, i.e. the first letter of “depths”).

  1. Briefly left top of hill for cooked breakfast (8)

Answer: PORRIDGE (i.e. “cooked breakfast”). Solution is PORT (i.e. “left” in shipspeak) with the last letter removed (indicated by “briefly”) and the remainder followed by RIDGE (i.e. “top of hill”), like so: POR-RIDGE.

  1. Novel warning widely posted by one relatively interfering (3,7,2,8,3)

Answer: BIG BROTHER IS WATCHING YOU (i.e. “novel warning widely posted”, referring to the notices plastered everywhere in George Orwell’s novel 1984). Clue plays on BROTHER being a “relative”. You get the idea.

  1. Go back into part of prison perhaps visibly upset (7)

Answer: WEEPING (i.e. “visibly upset”). Solution is PEE (i.e. “go” or take a leak) reversed (indicated by “back”) and placed “into” WING (i.e. “part of prison perhaps” – other buildings have wings), like so: W(EEP)ING.

  1. Daughter arrived after the start in her finery (6,2)

Answer: DOLLED UP (i.e. “in her finery”). Solution is D (a recognised abbreviation of “daughter”) followed by ROLLED UP (i.e. “arrived”) once the first letter has been removed (indicated by “after the start”), like so: D-(OLLED-UP).

  1. Heard nothing new? Shame (2,4)

Answer: OH DEAR (i.e. “shame”). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “new”) of HEARD and O (i.e. “nothing”).

  1. Pounded, flee across with or without changing course (2,3,4,5)

Answer: AS THE CROW FLIES (i.e. “without changing course”). “Pounded” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of FLEE ACROSS WITH.

  1. Breaks down domain name and puts up online (8)

Answer: COMPOSTS (i.e. “breaks down”). Solution is COM (i.e. top-level “domain name”) followed by POSTS (i.e. “puts up online”).

  1. One writing around book length in illegible hand (8)

Answer: SCRIBBLE (i.e. “in illegible hand”). Solution is SCRIBE (i.e. “one writing”) wrapped “around” B (a recognised abbreviation of “book”) and L (ditto “length”), like so: SCRIB(B-L)E.

  1. Lacking energy hears public transport’s convenient for work (8,6)

Answer: TRISTRAM SHANDY (i.e. a “work” by Laurence Sterne; full title: The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman). Solution is TRIES (i.e. “hears” in court) with the E removed (indicated by “lacking energy” – E being a recognised abbreviation of energy) and the remainder followed by TRAM’S (i.e. “public transport’s”) and HANDY (i.e. “convenient”), like so: TRIS-TRAM’S-HANDY.

  1. Be little affected by one’s having broken sleep (6)

Answer: RESIST (i.e. “be little affected by”). Solution is I’S (i.e. “[Roman numeral] one’s”) placed in or “breaking” REST (i.e. “sleep”), like so: RES(I’S)T.

  1. Publicises journey and its starting point? (8)

Answer: AIRSTRIP (i.e. “[journey’s] starting point”). Solution is AIRS (i.e. “publicises”) followed by TRIP (i.e. “journey”).

  1. Running around indoors, mute (7)

Answer: SORDINO (i.e. a “mute” or “damper to soften or deaden the sound of an instrument” (Chambers)). “Running around” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of INDOORS.

  1. Short notice badly deceives, if mistranslated (10,13)

Answer: CLASSIFIED ADVERTISEMENT (i.e. a “short notice”). “Badly” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of DECEIVES IF MISTRANSLATED.

  1. Finally putting a drink before tortoise (8)

Answer: GALAPAGO (i.e. “tortoise”). Solution is G (i.e. “finally putting”, i.e. the last letter of “putting”) followed by A, then LAP (i.e. “drink”) and AGO (i.e. “before”).

  1. Stay with sober group around November in the country (6)

Answer: GUYANA (i.e. “country”). Solution is GUY (i.e. “stay” or rope) followed by AA (i.e. “sober group”, specifically Alcoholics Anonymous) once wrapped “around” N (i.e. “November” in the phonetic alphabet), like so: GUY-A(N)A.

  1. With others behind, returning (2,2)

Answer: ET AL (i.e. “with others”). Solution is LATE (i.e. “behind”) reversed (indicated by “returning”).

  1. Impressive genes, not extremely common to both sexes (7)

Answer: EPICENE (i.e. “common to both sexes”). Solution is EPIC (i.e. “impressive”) followed by ENE (i.e. “genes, not extremely”, i.e. the word “genes” with its first and last letters removed).

  1. Finds at home, and allows to escape (7)

Answer: INVENTS (i.e. “finds”). Solution is IN (i.e. “at home”) followed by VENTS (i.e. “allows to escape”).

  1. I waste time inhaling drug, for preference (7)

Answer: IDEALLY (i.e. “preference”). Solution is I and DALLY (i.e. “waste time”) wrapped around or “inhaling” E (slang for the “drug” ecstasy), like so: I-D(E)ALLY.

  1. With caginess, Gill breaking barrier to progress (5,7)

Answer: GLASS CEILING (i.e. “barrier to progress”). “Breaking” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of CAGINESS GILL.

  1. Revolutionary used to take month out, given another job (10)

Answer: REDEPLOYED (i.e. “given another job”). Solution is RED (i.e. “revolutionary”) followed by EMPLOYED (i.e. “used”) once the M has been removed (indicated by “to take month out” – M being a recognised abbreviation of “month”), like so: RED-EPLOYED.

Down clues

  1. Raised bids to fiddle inside female’s lovely mouth? (6,3)

Answer: CUPID’S BOW (i.e. “lovely mouth” – over to Chambers: “the human lips shaped (either naturally or by lipstick) like [an archery bow in the shape of a double-curve]”). Solution is UP (i.e. “raised”) and an anagram (indicated by “to fiddle”) of BIDS both placed “inside” COW (i.e. “female”), like so: C(UP-IDSB)OW.

  1. Appeal from gambler including encouraging line (7,6)

Answer: BEGGING LETTER (i.e. “appeal”). Solution is BETTER (i.e. “gambler”) wrapped around or “including” EGGING (i.e. “encouraging”) and L (a recognised abbreviation of “line”), like so: B(EGGING-L)ETTER.

  1. Bread not available? Some is short (4)

Answer: NAAN (i.e. “bread”). Solution is N/A (i.e. “not available”) followed by ANY (i.e. “some”) once its last letter has been removed (indicated by “is short”), like so: N/A-AN.

  1. Singer is suitable to hear, girl and boy admit (4,10)

Answer: ELLA FITZGERALD (i.e. “singer”). Solution is a homophone (indicated by “to hear”) of FITS (i.e. “is suitable”) placed between or “admitted” by ELLA and GERALD (i.e. names of a “girl and boy”), like so: ELLA-(FITZ)-GERALD.

  1. Decline to start eating big breakfast (3)

Answer: EBB (i.e. “decline”). “To start” indicates the solution is derived from the initial letters of Eating Big Breakfast.

  1. Visiting Australia, you call to attract attention (4)

Answer: OYEZ (i.e. “call to attract attention” from, say, a town crier). Solution is YE (i.e. ye olde “you”) “visiting” or placed in OZ (i.e. “Australia”), like so: O(YE)Z.

  1. Association opposed to tourism in resort (10)

Answer: CONSORTIUM (i.e. “association”). Solution is CON (i.e. “opposed to”) followed by an anagram (indicated by “in resort”) of TOURISM, like so: CON-SORTIUM.

  1. Working through month with pay at the end, as a rule (8)

Answer: MONARCHY (i.e. a form of “rule”). Solution is ON (i.e. “working”) placed in or “through” MARCH (i.e. “month”) and followed by Y (i.e. “pay at the end”, i.e. the last letter of “pay”), like so: M(ON)ARCH-Y.

  1. A teacher’s maintaining veto on knowing the latest emergency order (7,4)

Answer: ABANDON SHIP (i.e. “emergency order”). Solution is A and DON’S (i.e. “teacher’s”) wrapped around or “maintaining” BAN (i.e. “veto”). This is all then followed by HIP (i.e. “knowing the latest”), like so: (A-(BAN)-DON’S)-HIP.

  1. Perfect model car – vault over it (9)

Answer: ARCHETYPE (i.e. “perfect model”). Solution is E TYPE (i.e. make of “car”, a Jaguar – interesting after DAIMLER last week. Are Times setters angling for new cars now? Ker-ching!) placed after or having “over it” – this being a down clue – ARCH (i.e. “vault” – I disagree. Vaults can be formed of arched ceilings, but I don’t think that’s sufficient to make a direct leap from “vault” to ARCH), like so: ARCH-(E-TYPE).

  1. Wonder about leaving tideway in an orderly state (4)

Answer: TIDY (i.e. “in an orderly state”). Solution is TIDEWAY with the EWA removed (indicated by “wonder about leaving” – AWE being “wonder” and “about” being a reversal indicator).

  1. Valid legal document is a business asset (8)

Answer: GOODWILL (i.e. “a business asset”, though perhaps not one you’re going to see on a balance sheet). Solution is GOOD (i.e. “valid”) followed by WILL (i.e. “legal document”).

  1. Scans the hill, so calling to start game (4,4)

Answer: EYES DOWN (i.e. a “calling to start game” of bingo). Solution is EYES (i.e. “scans”) followed by DOWN (i.e. “hill” – Chambers offers “a treeless upland” to support this, but not much else. My Bradford’s likes it, though).

  1. Punch may have this effect – reportedly makes tea (6)

Answer: BRUISE (i.e. “punch may have this effect”). “Reportedly” indicates homophone. Solution is a homophone of BREWS (i.e. “makes tea”).

  1. Small widows’ veils ending up at the cleaners (8)

Answer: SWEEPERS (i.e. “cleaners”). Solution is S (a recognised abbreviation of “small”) followed by WEEPERS (i.e. “widows’ veils”). “Ending up” in a down clue can be a cryptic indicator of a final letter moving place, but I think on this occasion it is merely to be read as “resulting in”. Meanwhile, it’s odd to have WEEPERS and WEEPING in the same grid. Suggests there may have been some algorithmic assistance to this week’s puzzle.

  1. Supply US with energy for island (8)

Answer: GUERNSEY (i.e. “island”). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “supply”, as in being supple) of US and ENERGY.

  1. Uniformed man’s authority over fine corps (14)

Answer: COMMISSIONAIRE (i.e. “uniformed man”). Solution is COMMISSION (i.e. “authority”) followed by AI (i.e. “fine”, i.e. “A1” with the 1 replaced by its Roman numeral equivalent) and RE (i.e. “corps”, specifically the Royal Engineers of the British Army).

  1. Painting a leaf wrapping stone (8)

Answer: ABSTRACT (i.e. “painting”). Solution is A and BRACT (i.e. “leaf” – over to Chambers again: “a leaf (often modified) that bears a flower in its axil”) “wrapped” around ST (a recognised abbreviation of “stone”), like so: AB(ST)RACT.

  1. Rest period, at the test match? (5,3)

Answer: LORD’S DAY (i.e. “rest period”, Sunday). Clue plays on LORDS being a “test match” ground.

  1. Given an errand, one people credit with tender emotion (13)

Answer: SENTIMENTALLY (i.e. “with tender emotion”). Solution is SENT (i.e. “given an errand”) followed by I (i.e. “[Roman numeral] one”), then MEN (i.e. “people”) and TALLY (i.e. concur or “credit”).

  1. Permanent quality something brought on stage (8)

Answer: PROPERTY. Solution satisfies “permanent quality” and “something brought on stage”, often shortened to “prop”.

  1. Where to find the finest vintages, we hear – they fly off the shelves (4,7)

Answer: BEST SELLERS (i.e. “they fly off the shelves”). “We hear” indicates homophone, in this case of BEST CELLARS (i.e. “where to find the finest vintages”).

  1. Wounded horse with weapons (6)

Answer: HARMED (i.e. “wounded”). Solution is H (i.e. “horse”, both slang for heroin) followed by ARMED (i.e. “with weapons”).

  1. This could suggest girl left meat dish (5,5)

Answer: MIXED GRILL (i.e. “meat dish”). Solution is MIXED GRIL (i.e. “this could suggest girl”, i.e. how GRIL is an anagram (indicated by MIXED) of “girl”) followed by L (a recognised abbreviation of “left”).

  1. In paradise almost furiously anxious at first to uphold peace (7-2)

Answer: SHANGRI-LA (i.e. “paradise” of James Hilton’s novel Lost Horizon). Solution is ANGRILY (i.e. “furiously”) with its last letter removed (indicated by “almost”) and the remainder followed by A (i.e. “anxious at first”, i.e. the initial letter of “anxious”). This is all preceded by or “upholding” – this being a down clue – SH (i.e. “peace” – Chambers suggests this used to be directive to be silent), like so: SH-(ANGRIL-A). Another conspicuous repeat, appearing only a couple of months ago in grid 1600.

  1. Storming round Virginia wreaking destruction (8)

Answer: RAVAGING (i.e. “wreaking destruction”). Solution is RAGING (i.e. “storming”) wrapped “round” VA (US state abbreviation of “Virginia”), like so: RA(VA)GING.

  1. Defeated by a better dramatist? (9)

Answer: OUTPLAYED (i.e. “defeated”). Clue plays on “dramatists” wot write PLAYS. You get the idea.

  1. Perhaps bishop’s uniform (2,1,5)

Answer: OF A PIECE (i.e. homogenous or “uniform”). Clue also satisfies “perhaps bishop’s”, read possessively – a bishop being a chess PIECE.

  1. Composer committed to chamber group (4)

Answer: Alban BERG (i.e. “composer”). “Committed to” indicates the solution has been hidden in the clue, like so: CHAM(BER G)ROUP.

  1. River that is a feature of some German names (4)

Answer: AVON (i.e. “river”). Solution is A followed by VON (i.e. “feature of some German names”).

  1. Divorced from old wife, chap collapsed (4)

Answer: FELL (i.e. “collapsed”). Solution is FELLOW (i.e. “chap”) once removing or “divorcing” O (a recognised abbreviation of “old”) and W (ditto “wife”).

  1. Get to appear shortly (3)

Answer: SEE (i.e. understand or “see”). Solution is SEEM (i.e. “appear”) with the last letter removed (indicated by “shortly”).

7 thoughts on “Times Jumbo Cryptic Crossword 1609

  1. Thanks Lucian. Yes, a toughie, and with rather too many deletions for my liking. We finished it but without understanding all the parsings, so thanks, as always, for your invaluable explanations.

    I wonder if anyone else also fell foul of a sneaky piece of misdirection in 51d? We started out thinking the answer must be MANN, which is a river in Australia. The structure of the clue gave the impression that the answer was hidden in the wording: “… some GerMAN Names”. But of course, it completely messed up 54a.

    Take care, and stay safe. SB

  2. We rather liked it too. Satisfying to overcome some challenging clues. There were a couple of weak spots (like Naan) and we’d never heard of Weepers for widows’ veils (so thank you for explaining). But those were outweighed by some nice clues like Outplayed and Avon.

  3. Also enjoyed – every clue was fair. 18a: I couldn’t get ‘offen’ to connect with Bog’s, so thank you Lucian for that parsing. 11d archetype: arch is a good synonym for vault when both are treated as verbs – Chambers concurs; and I too was delighted to find E Type, the car I so lusted after throughout my youth. 19d: down derives from Anglo-Saxon dune and it does precisely mean hill, whether plural (the South Downs) or singular (Porton, Boscombe etc). I am always happy to have my vocab expanded eg epicene, sordino and Galapago without final s. And I like clever misdirects like short notice for classified advertisement. Avon was very nice, in fact congrats to the setter for all the short word clues: others sometimes take less trouble with these.

  4. Enjoyed this one, nicely challenging but really grumpy about 51d. Key rule re clues is there should only be one viable solution so think the editor slipped here (forgivably).

    Thanks as ever, Lucian. I find the jumbo enough of a drain on my time let alone having to explain, concisely and coherently to the world, how the answers are derived.

  5. Thanks, Lucian. Agreed a bit harder this week. I too had Mann for 51d for a while which delayed things somewhat. Re 13d I think you might see goodwill on the balance sheet sometimes where a business has been acquired by another. Any accountants out there who can corroborate this? Cheers

  6. This crossword was brought to you with grrr.
    A toughie but for me just too many overly ‘clever’ or obscure words – hard without being actually clever. Obscure/barely logical anagram indicators.

    GALAPAGO singular tortoise.
    It’s in the dictionary but that is overtly Spanish and reliant on first knowing – via islands or tortoises themselves – that Galápagos is Spanish for tortoises (plural) and then constructing a grammatically Spanish singular.

    AVON carelessly missing the valid Australian river MANN in …gerMAN Names… (caught out a few of us I see): and meant that INVENTS was the last thing I solved. And I think that was careless not clever 😉

    PS GOODWILL absolutely is accounted for and on the balance sheet:

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