Times Jumbo Cryptic Crossword 1578

A relatively straightforward one this week. The setter seems to be one who goes the extra mile to slot long words into their grids ahead of phrases, which is all good to me.

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 slip then you might find my Just For Fun page of use, where you’ll find links to solutions for hundreds of the things.

Thanks again for the warm words and input. It’s always interesting to hear the opinions of other solvers once they’ve set down their pens. Till next time, stay safe out there kids.

LP

FBV (French-By-Volume): 1.6%

Across clues

  1. Maine resident perhaps has peace by river interrupted by seabird (9)

Answer: EASTERNER (i.e. “Maine resident perhaps”, Maine being situated on the east coast of the US). Solution is EASE (i.e. “peace”) and R (a recognised abbreviation of “river”) all wrapped around or “interrupted by” TERN (i.e. “seabird”), like so: EAS(TERN)E-R.

  1. One million soldiers chased by tailless sea monster (7)

Answer: IMMENSE (i.e. “monster”). Solution is I (i.e. “[Roman numeral] one”) followed by M (a recognised abbreviation of “million”), then MEN (i.e. “soldiers”) and SEA once its last letter has been removed (indicated by “tailless”), like so: I-M-MEN-SE.

  1. Bury playwright destroying first of plays (5)

Answer: INTER (i.e. “bury”). Solution is Harold PINTER (i.e. “playwright”) with the P removed (indicated by “destroying first [letter] of plays”).

  1. Key in again across air gap of widescreen terminals? (2-5)

Answer: RE-ENTER (i.e. “key in again”). “Across air gap of” indicates the solution has been hidden around the space found in WIDESC(REEN TER)MINALS.

  1. German prince who helps choose government? (7)

Answer: ELECTOR. Solution satisfies “German prince” – Chambers offers: “the title belonging to those princes and archbishops of the Holy Roman Empire who had the right to elect the Emperor”; Oxford meanwhile narrows it to “a German prince entitled to take part in the election of the Holy Roman Emperor” – and “who helps choose government”.

  1. Cut aluminium and separate (7)

Answer: SEVERAL (i.e. “separate”). Solution is SEVER (i.e. “cut”) followed by AL (chemical symbol of “aluminium”).

  1. Ran mediation online unusually involving several religious groups (19)

Answer: INTERDENOMINATIONAL (i.e. “involving several religious groups”). “Unusually” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of RAN MEDITATION ONLINE.

  1. We are giving out whiskey as before (3)

Answer: ERE (i.e. “before”, poetically). Solution is WE’RE (a contraction of “we are”) with the W removed (indicated by “giving out whiskey” – W being “whiskey” in the phonetic alphabet).

  1. Billy goat’s head tossed easily (6)

Answer: GLIBLY (i.e. “easily”). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “tossed”) of BILLY and G (“goat’s head”, i.e. the first letter of “goat”).

  1. Dose of cocaine finished band’s members (4-2)

Answer: LINE-UP (i.e. “band’s members”). Solution is LINE (i.e. “dose of cocaine”) followed by UP (i.e. “finished”).

  1. Ship worker backing weather checks (9)

Answer: STEVEDORE (i.e. “ship worker”, more specifically one employed at a dock to load and unload ships). Solution is ERODE (i.e. “weather”) and VETS (i.e. “checks”) all reversed (indicated by “backing”), like so: STEV-EDORE.

  1. One taking out patent, say, restarting with new design (10)

Answer: REGISTRANT (i.e. “one taking out patent, say”). “With new design” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of RESTARTING.

  1. House divided, leaderless, about possible Russian subjugation (11)

Answer: ENSLAVEMENT (i.e. “subjugation”). Solution is TENEMENT (i.e. “house divided”) with the first letter removed (indicated by “leaderless”) and the remainder wrapped “about” SLAV (i.e. “possible Russian”), like so: EN(SLAV)EMENT.

  1. Ring extended family before end of evening (5)

Answer: CLANG (i.e. “ring”). Solution is CLAN (i.e. “extended family”) followed by G (i.e. “end [letter] of evening”).

  1. Signal unlikely to be misunderstood (3,5)

Answer: ALL CLEAR. Solution satisfies “signal” and “unlikely to be misunderstood”.

  1. Way to finish off church from Rev Spooner, a bad-tempered type (8)

Answer: SPITFIRE (i.e. “a bad-tempered type”). Solution is a “Spoonerism” of FIT SPIRE (i.e. “way to finish off church”).

  1. Happening to get fish when the light is fading (8)

Answer: EVENTIDE (i.e. “when the light is fading”). Solution is EVENT (i.e. “happening”) followed by IDE (i.e. “fish”).

  1. Choose Scots island loch at one’s discretion (8)

Answer: OPTIONAL (i.e. “at one’s discretion”). Solution is OPT (i.e. “choose”) followed by IONA (i.e. “Scots island”) and L (a recognised abbreviation of “loch”).

  1. English and eleven French for the bar? (5)

Answer: EXILE (i.e. “bar”). Solution is E (a recognised abbreviation of “English”) followed by XI (i.e. “eleven” in Roman numerals) and LE (i.e. “French for ‘the'”, so you know what that means…)

  1. Knowing I backed wind power round islands (11)

Answer: ARCHIPELAGO (i.e. “islands”). Solution is ARCH (i.e. “knowing”, shrewd or cunning) and I followed by GALE (i.e. “wind”) and P (a recognised abbreviation of “power”) once these latter two have been reversed (indicated by “backed”). The whole is then followed by O (i.e. “round”) like so: (ARCH-I)-(P-ELAG)-O

  1. Concierge upset about tenant ultimately not thinking of others? (10)

Answer: EGOCENTRIC (i.e. “not thinking of others”). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “upset”) of CONCIERGE wrapped “about” T (i.e. “tenant ultimately”, i.e. the last letter of “tenant”), like so: EGOCEN(T)RIC.

  1. Tactless speaker’s vulgar opening (9)

Answer: LOUDMOUTH (i.e. “tactless speaker”). Solution is LOUD (i.e. “vulgar”) followed by MOUTH (i.e. “opening”).

  1. Full of fun, but no judge of eyes (6)

Answer: OCULAR (i.e. “of eyes”). Solution is JOCULAR (i.e. “full of fun”) with the J removed (indicated by “but no judge” – J being a recognised abbreviation of “judge”).

  1. Allowed to follow a Royal Marines band (6)

Answer: ARMLET (i.e. “band”). Solution is LET (i.e. “allowed”) placed after or “following” A and RM (a recognised abbreviation of “Royal Marines”), like so: (A-RM)-LET.

  1. Time after game to fight over females? (3)

Answer: RUT (i.e. “fight over females”). Solution is T (a recognised abbreviation of “time”) placed “after” RU (i.e. “game”, specifically Rugby Union), like so: RU-T.

  1. Not being got home, half have to leave school by about one with books (19)

Answer: INCOMPREHENSIBILITY (i.e. the sense of “not being got”). Solution is IN (i.e. “home”) followed by COMPREHENSIVE (i.e. “school”) with the VE removed (indicated by “half have to leave…”, i.e. specifically the last half of “have”), then BY once wrapped “about” I (i.e. “[Roman numeral] one”) and LIT (i.e. “books”, short for literature), like so: IN-COMPREHENSI-B(I-LIT)Y.

  1. Source of starch fool found in wine (7)

Answer: CASSAVA (i.e. “source of starch”). Solution is ASS (i.e. “fool”) placed “in” CAVA (i.e. “wine”), like so: C(ASS)AVA.

  1. British current design leading to European aircraft (7)

Answer: BIPLANE (i.e. “aircraft”). Solution is B (a recognised abbreviation of “British”) followed by I (a recognised abbreviation of an electric “current” used in physics), then PLAN (i.e. “design”) and E (a recognised abbreviation of “European”).

  1. Support bad English language with feeling? (7)

Answer: BRAILLE (i.e. “language with feeling”, a play on how braille characters are identified by touch). Solution is BRA (i.e. “support”) followed by ILL (i.e. “bad”) and E (a recognised abbreviation of “English”).

  1. Fencing move new in winter sport (5)

Answer: LUNGE (i.e. “fencing move”). Solution N (i.e. “new”) placed “in” LUGE (i.e. “winter sport”), like so: LU(N)GE.

  1. Drunken tart kept under observation (3-4)

Answer: PIE-EYED (i.e. “drunken”). Solution is PIE (i.e. “tart”) followed by EYED (i.e. “kept under observation”).

  1. So you dated, embracing a lot of fashion again (9)

Answer: THEREFORE (i.e. “so”). Solution is THEE (i.e. “you dated”, i.e. an archaic form of “you”) wrapped around or “embracing” REFORM (i.e. “fashion again”) once the last letter has been removed (indicated by “a lot of…”), like so: THE(REFOR)E.

Down clues

  1. Lacking pounds, picking up small income from work (8)

Answer: EARNINGS (i.e. “income from work”). Solution is LEARNING (i.e. “picking up”) with the L removed (indicated by “lacking pounds” – L being a recognised abbreviation of “pounds” weight, after the Latin libra) and the remainder followed by S (a recognised abbreviation of “small”), like so: EARNING-S.

  1. Upturned seats over time gathered dust (5)

Answer: SWEPT (i.e. “gathered dust”). Solution is PEWS (i.e. “seats”) reversed (indicated by “upturned” – this being a down clue) and followed by T (a recognised abbreviation of “time”), like so: SWEP-T.

  1. Fascinating all-nighter wound up around noon (11)

Answer: ENTHRALLING (i.e. “fascinating”). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “wound up”) of ALL-NIGHTER wrapped “around” N (a recognised abbreviation of “noon”), like so: E(N)THRALLING.

  1. Run in without clothes, bothered (6)

Answer: NARKED (i.e. “bothered”). Solution is R (a recognised abbreviation of “run” used in a number of ball games) placed “in” NAKED (i.e. “without clothes”), like so: NA(R)KED.

  1. I rally Hector, possibly with rousing speeches (12)

Answer: RHETORICALLY (i.e. “with rousing speeches”). “Possibly” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of I RALLY HECTOR.

  1. News report that is about second break down (7)

Answer: ITEMISE (i.e. “break down”). Solution is ITEM (i.e. “news report”) followed by IE (i.e. “that is”, i.e. “i.e.”) once wrapped “about” S (a recognised abbreviation of “second”), like so: ITEM-I(S)E.

  1. Encountered speed in tiniest amount in Fife with a good source for stimulant (15)

Answer: METHAMPHETAMINE (i.e. “stimulant”). Solution is MET (i.e. “encountered”) followed by MPH (i.e. “speed”, specifically Miles Per Hour) once placed “in” HAET (i.e. “tiniest amount in Fife”, referring to a Scots word meaning “a whit” (Chambers) – no, me neither), then A and MINE (i.e. “good source”), like so: MET-HA(MPH)ET-A-MINE.

  1. Vanity of drug agent having wife keeping head down? (10)

Answer: NARCISSISM (i.e. “vanity”). Solution is NARC (i.e. “drug agent”) followed by MISSIS (i.e. “wife”) once its last letter or “head” has been placed to the end or “down” – this being a down clue – like so: NARC-(M)ISSIS => NARC-ISSIS(M).

  1. The very heart of a German city church (7)

Answer: ESSENCE (i.e. “the very heart of” something). Solution is ESSEN (i.e. “German city”) followed by CE (i.e. “church”, specifically the Church of England).

  1. Concern in volume five to fix missing chapter (11)

Answer: INVOLVEMENT (i.e. “concern”). Solution is IN followed by VOL (short for “volume”), then V (i.e. “[Roman numeral] five”) and CEMENT (i.e. “to fix”) once the C has been removed (indicated by “missing chapter” – C being a recognised abbreviation of “chapter”), like so: IN-VOL-V-EMENT.

  1. Triplets? See mother struggling (9)

Answer: THREESOME (i.e. “triplets”). “Struggling” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of SEE MOTHER.

  1. Bring aid to fifty-one locked up by local magistrate (7)

Answer: RELIEVE (i.e. “bring aid to”). Solution is LI (i.e. “fifty-one” expressed in Roman numerals) placed in or “locked up by” REEVE (i.e. an old “local magistrate”), like so: RE(LI)EVE.

  1. Repeat: I support trapping rodent (7)

Answer: ITERATE (i.e. “repeat”). Solution is I followed by TEE (i.e. “support” for a golf ball) once wrapped around or “trapping” RAT (i.e. “rodent”), like so: I-TE(RAT)E.

  1. Position legs over edges of tear in seat (8)

Answer: STRADDLE (i.e. “position legs over”). Solution is TR (i.e. “edges of tear”, i.e. the first and last letters of “tear”) placed “in” SADDLE (i.e. “seat”), like so: S(TR)ADDLE.

  1. What’s taking a long shot with an unapproachable subject? (15)

Answer: TELEPHOTOGRAPHY (i.e. “what’s taking a long shot”). The remainder of the clue plays on, say, a paparazzo’s use of a telephoto lens when snapping celebrities from afar. You get the idea.

  1. Dismayed note on piano lost its attraction (8)

Answer: APPALLED (i.e. “dismayed”). Solution is A (i.e. “[musical] note”) followed by P (a recognised abbreviation of “piano” used in music) and PALLED (i.e. “lost its attraction”).

  1. Shackle communist with hierarchical system (6)

Answer: TIERED (i.e. “with hierarchical system”). Solution is TIE (i.e. “shackle”) followed by RED (i.e. “communist”).

  1. Note mother’s written after school plan (6)

Answer: SCHEMA (i.e. “plan”). Solution is E (i.e. another “[musical] note”) and MA (i.e. “mother”) both placed “after” SCH (a recognised abbreviation of “school”), like so: SCH-(E-MA).

  1. Original capital for Denmark, say (7)

Answer: INITIAL. Solution satisfies “original” and “capital for Denmark, say”, or any other word for that matter.

  1. Possibly amusing documentary throwing men into faint (12)

Answer: INFOTAINMENT (i.e. “possibly amusing documentary”). “Throwing” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of MEN INTO FAINT.

  1. Group of leaders seeing Mutti arrive flustered (11)

Answer: TRIUMVIRATE (i.e. “group of leaders”). “Flustered” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of MUTTI ARRIVE.

  1. Eliminate former word in a note (11)

Answer: EXTERMINATE (i.e. “eliminate”). Solution is EX (i.e. “former”) followed by TERM (i.e. “word”), then IN, then A and TE (i.e. yet another musical “note”, this time from the sol-fa notation, or doh-re-me).

  1. Overweight fairy queen in predicament, open to working out? (10)

Answer: FATHOMABLE (i.e. “open to working out”). Solution is FAT (i.e. “overweight”) followed by MAB (i.e. “fairy queen” – over to Chambers: “the name of a female fairy believed to be the bringer of dreams; the queen of the fairies”) once placed “in” HOLE (i.e. “predicament”), like so: FAT-HO(MAB)LE.

  1. Loose woman roués can’t upset (9)

Answer: COURTESAN (i.e. “loose woman”). “Upset” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of ROUÉS CAN’T. Nicely worked.

  1. Vacated emplacement hastily leave nerve gas (8)

Answer: ETHYLENE (i.e. “gas”). Solution is the words “EmplacemenT“, “HastilY“, “LeavE” and “NervE” all with their middle letters removed, indicated by “vacated”.

  1. Stringed instrument mostly I term endlessly songlike (7)

Answer: LYRICAL (i.e. “songlike”). Solution is LYRE (i.e. “stringed instrument”) with its last letter removed (indicated by “mostly”) and the remainder followed by I and CALL (i.e. to “term”) once its last letter has also been removed (indicated by “endlessly”), like so: LYR-I-CAL.

  1. Relative nearly gets snake to release grip (7)

Answer: UNCLASP (i.e. “release grip”). Solution is UNCLE (i.e. “relative”) once its last letter has been removed (indicated by “nearly”) and the remainder followed by ASP (i.e. “snake”), like so: UNCL-ASP.

  1. University group speaking about Newton is not listened to (7)

Answer: UNHEARD (i.e. “not listened to”). Solution is U (a recognised abbreviation of “university”) and a homophone (indicated by “speaking”) of HERD (i.e. “group”) all wrapped “about” N (a recognised abbreviation of “Newton”), like so: U-(N)-HEARD.

  1. Sailor in base having potential to work (6)

Answer: VIABLE (i.e. “having potential to work”). Solution is AB (i.e. “sailor” of the Able Bodied variety) placed “in” VILE (i.e. “base”), like so: VI(AB)LE.

  1. Northern dwelling – one with a lot of shade (5)

Answer: IGLOO (i.e. “northern dwelling”). Solution is I (i.e. “[Roman numeral] one”) followed by GLOOM (i.e. “shade”) once its last letter has been removed (indicated by “a lot of…”), like so: I-GLOO.

Times Jumbo Cryptic Crossword 1577

A medium strength Jumbo this week. To me there seemed a few more spicy solutions in this one than usual, but they were mostly gettable thanks to some forgiving clues. Not much more to add, really.

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 grief then you might find my Just For Fun page of use, where you’ll find links to solutions to hundreds of the things.

Speaking of which, I note that The Times Jumbo Cryptic Crossword Book 21 is out and that it partly republishes Jumbos I’ve previously covered. I’ve therefore updated the Just For Fun page and a few old posts accordingly.

Thanks again for the kind words and input. It’s always interesting to hear the opinions of other solvers once they’ve put down their pens. Till next time, stay safe out there kids. – LP

FBV (French-By-Volume): 1.6%

Across clues

  1. Muse, when given info, probing twitch causing malformation (11)

Answer: TERATOGENIC (i.e. “causing malformation” – over to Chambers: “producing monsters; causing abnormal growth (in a fetus)”). Solution is ERATO (one of the Greek “muses”) and GEN (i.e. “info”) both placed in or “probing” TIC (i.e. “twitch”), like so: T(ERATO-GEN)IC. This clue brought to mind the title of an extreme horror novella by Edward Lee and Wrath James White called The Teratologist. I’ll leave it up to the sick puppies among you to look it up. It ain’t Book At Bedtime material, that’s for sure.

  1. Set up area to have meal outside (6)

Answer: LAUNCH (i.e. “set up”). Solution is A (a recognised abbreviation of “area”) placed in or “having…outside” LUNCH (i.e. “meal”), like so: L(A)UNCH.

  1. A joke about being doddery (4)

Answer: GAGA (i.e. “doddery”). Solution is A and GAG (i.e. “joke”) all reversed (indicated by “about”), like so: GAG-A.

  1. Actor in America: act’s ending with popular love verse (7)

Answer: Peter USTINOV (i.e. “actor”). Solution is US (i.e. “America”) followed by T (i.e. “act’s ending”, i.e. the last letter of “act”), then IN (i.e. “popular”), then O (i.e. “love”, a zero score in tennis) and V (a recognised abbreviation of “verse”).

  1. Overact as radio geek with modern technology increased? (3,2,2)

Answer: HAM IT UP (i.e. “overact”). Solution is HAM (i.e. “radio geek”) followed by IT (i.e. “modern technology”) and UP (i.e. “increased”).

  1. Number joining the woman outside work that no-one would fancy? (2-5)

Answer: NO-HOPER (i.e. “that no-one would fancy”). Solution is NO (short for “number”) followed by HER (i.e. “the woman”) once wrapped around or placed “outside” of OP (i.e. “work”, specifically a recognised abbreviation of “opus”), like so: NO-H(OP)ER.

  1. Sculptor as one to fashion government offices (13)

Answer: PROCONSULATES (i.e. Roman “government offices”, apparently). “To fashion” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of SCULPTOR AS ONE.

  1. Former English politician (one in a hundred) getting let-off (9)

Answer: EXEMPTION (i.e. “let-off”). Solution is EX (i.e. “former”) followed by E (a recognised abbreviation of “English”), then MP (i.e. “politician”, specifically a Member of Parliament), then I (i.e. “[Roman numeral] one”) once placed “in” TON (i.e. “a hundred”), like so: EX-E-MP-T(I)ON.

  1. Draw sketches maybe moving around church (5)

Answer: TRACE (i.e. to “draw”). Solution is ART (i.e. “sketches maybe”) reversed (indicated by “moving around”) and followed by CE (i.e. “church”, specifically the Church of England), like so: TRA-CE.

  1. Film about old school is exposing hater of marriage (10)

Answer: MISOGAMIST (i.e. “hater of marriage”). Solution is MIST (i.e. a “film” of moisture) wrapped “about” O (a recognised abbreviation of “old”), GAM (i.e. a “school” or pod of whales) and IS, like so: MIS(O-GAM-IS)T.

  1. What may sound like iron temperament (6)

Answer: METTLE (i.e. “temperament”). “What may sound like” indicates homophone. Solution is a homophone of METAL (i.e. “iron”).

  1. What’s falsely portrayed about Queen brings conflict (8)

Answer: FRICTION (i.e. “conflict”). Solution is FICTION (i.e. “what’s falsely portrayed”) wrapped “about” R (i.e. “queen”, specifically a recognised abbreviation of the Latin Regina), like so: F(R)ICTION.

  1. Daughter is going to gig with blokes, event ultimately producing upset (14)

Answer: DISCONCERTMENT (i.e. “upset”). Solution is D (a recognised abbreviation of “daughter”) followed by IS, then CONCERT (i.e. “gig”), then MEN (i.e. “blokes”) and T (i.e. “event ultimately”, i.e. the last letter of “event”).

  1. Woman in the course of time to become mean? (7)

Answer: AVERAGE (i.e. mathematical “mean”). Solution is VERA (i.e. “woman’s” name) placed “in” AGE (i.e. “the course of time”), like so: A(VERA)GE.

  1. Not favouring Eastern jewellery for presents (9)

Answer: OFFERINGS (i.e. “presents”). Solution is OFF (i.e. “not favouring”) followed by E (a recognised abbreviation of “Eastern”), then RINGS (i.e. “jewellery”).

  1. Reptile with label turning yellow (5)

Answer: GATOR (i.e. “reptile”). Solution is TAG (i.e. “label”) reversed (indicated by “turning”) and followed by OR (i.e. “yellow” or gold in heraldry), like so: GAT-OR.

  1. Drunk this evening? That’s not on! (5)

Answer: TIGHT (i.e. “drunk”). Solution is TONIGHT (i.e. “this evening”) with the ON removed (indicated by “that’s not on”).

  1. They have offensive weapons? They must be charged (9)

Answer: BATTERIES. Solution satisfies “they have offensive weapons” and “they must be charged”.

  1. Grumble with the old woman down below (7)

Answer: MAUNDER (i.e. “grumble”). Solution is MA (i.e. “old woman”, both informal terms for mother) followed by UNDER (i.e. “down below”).

  1. Computer feature, from being uninitialised, expanded? (4-4,6)

Answer: READ-ONLY MEMORY (i.e. “computer feature”). Solution is FROM with the first letter removed (indicated by “uninitialised”). The remainder, ROM, is a recognised abbreviation of the solution.

  1. Have a bit of time with girls – that’s sweet (8)

Answer: MOLASSES (i.e. “that’s sweet”). Solution is MO (i.e. “a bit of time”, short for a moment) followed by LASSES (i.e. “girls”).

  1. Tears apart the character finally appearing as substitute (6)

Answer: ERSATZ (i.e. “substitute”). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “apart”) of TEARS followed by Z (i.e. “the character finally”, i.e. the last letter of the alphabet), like so: ERSAT-Z.

  1. A series of points suggesting one should sign up? (6,4)

Answer: DOTTED LINE. Solution satisfies the clue as a whole. Not much to add to that, really.

  1. Time to go to India to find enchantress (5)

Answer: HOURI (i.e. “enchantress” – no, me neither). Solution is HOUR (i.e. “time”) followed by I (“India” in the phonetic alphabet).

  1. Instrument in a workplace knocked over by travelling dog (9)

Answer: BALALAIKA (i.e. “instrument”). Solution is A and LAB (i.e. “workplace”, short for laboratory) all reversed (indicated by “knocked over”) and followed by LAIKA (i.e. “travelling dog” – she was one of the first animals sent into space), like so: (BAL-A)-LAIKA.

  1. Prisoners OK for being disciplined, not beyond being controlled (13)

Answer: CONSTRAINABLE (i.e. “not beyond being controlled”). When written as CONS TRAINABLE the solution also satisfies “prisoners OK for being disciplined”.

  1. Engineers facing gales maybe – procedures to start again? (7)

Answer: REWINDS (i.e. “procedures to start again”). Solution is RE (i.e. “engineers”, specifically the Royal Engineers of the British Army) followed by WINDS (i.e. “gales maybe”).

  1. Statement of personal ambition to pen lines revealing malice (3,4)

Answer: ILL WILL (i.e. “malice”). Solution is I WILL (i.e. “statement of personal ambition”) wrapped around or “penning” L and L (both recognised abbreviations of “line”), like so: I-(LL)-WILL.

  1. Country peasants ultimately embraced by public schoolboy without end (7)

Answer: ESTONIA (i.e. “country”). Solution is S (i.e. “peasants ultimately”, i.e. the last letter of “peasants”) placed in or “embraced by” ETONIAN (i.e. “public schoolboy”) once the last letter has been removed (indicated by “without end”), like so: E(S)TONIA.

  1. Plant seen in old vessel, round to the left (4)

Answer: OKRA (i.e. “plant”). Solution is O (a recognised abbreviation of “old”) followed by ARK (i.e. “vessel”) once reversed (indicated by “to the left” – this being an across clue), like so: O-KRA.

  1. What’s expected – disciple becoming minister (6)

Answer: PARSON (i.e. “minister”). Solution is PAR (i.e. “what’s expected”) followed by SON (i.e. “disciple”).

  1. Log – wood that can be eaten! (6,5)

Answer: MINUTE STEAK (i.e. “that can be eaten”). Solution is MINUTES (i.e. “log” of a meeting) followed by TEAK (i.e. “wood”).

Down clues

  1. Elephantine yell of loose woman losing head (7)

Answer: TRUMPET (i.e. “elephantine yell”). Solution is STRUMPET (i.e. “loose woman”) with the first letter removed (indicated by “losing head”).

  1. New realisation brings excuse (11)

Answer: RATIONALISE (i.e. to “excuse”). “New” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of REALISATION.

  1. Dance with zest and love (5)

Answer: TANGO (i.e. “dance”). Solution is TANG (i.e. “zest”) followed by O (i.e. “love”, covered earlier).

  1. Call a person to allocate belfry duty? (4,7,1,4)

Answer: GIVE SOMEONE A BELL. Solution satisfies “call a person” and, playfully, “allocate belfry duty”.

  1. Sort of philosopher’s province, greeting cant (8)

Answer: NIHILIST (i.e. “sort of philosopher”). Solution is NI (i.e. “province”, specifically Northern Ireland) followed by HI (i.e. “greeting”) and CANT (i.e. incline or “list”)

  1. Violent ma got fierce and suffered badly (4,2,5)

Answer: CAME TO GRIEF (i.e. “suffered badly”). “Violent” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of MA GOT FIERCE.

  1. Car plant (5)

Answer: LOTUS. Solution satisfies “car” brand and “plant”. Simple but elegant.

  1. Disagreeable incident when a Parisian worker carrying requests meets head (14)

Answer: UNPLEASANTNESS (i.e. “disagreeable incident”). Solution is UN (i.e. “a Parisian”, i.e. the French for “a”) and ANT (i.e. “worker”) wrapped around or “carrying” PLEAS (i.e. “requests”). This is all then followed by NESS (i.e. “head”, both geographic features), like so: (UN-(PLEAS)-ANT)-NESS.

  1. Report of triumph over one of two in autumn game (6)

Answer: CONKER (i.e. “one of two in autumn game”). “Report of” indicates homophone. Solution is a homophone of CONQUER (i.e. “triumph”).

  1. A bit of the argument intended to be heard in scheduled meeting? (11)

Answer: APPOINTMENT (i.e. “scheduled meeting”). Solution is A followed by P (i.e. “bit” or coin, in this case short for a penny), then POINT (i.e. “argument”) and a homophone (indicated by “to be heard”) of MEANT (i.e. “intended”), like so: A-P-POINT-MENT.

  1. A right row or “do” (7)

Answer: ARRANGE (i.e. “do”). Solution is A followed by R (a recognised abbreviation of “right”) and RANGE (i.e. “row”).

  1. Sailors taking time to produce cargo? (8)

Answer: SHIPMENT (i.e. “cargo”). Solution is SHIPMEN (i.e. “sailors”) followed by T (a recognised abbreviation of “time”).

  1. Competitor, not entirely intelligent, ranting (7)

Answer: ENTRANT (i.e. “competitor”). “Not entirely” indicates the solution has been hidden in the clue, like so: INTELLIG(ENT RANT)ING.

  1. Scottish officer? A Scot with little hesitation (5)

Answer: MACER (i.e. “Scottish officer” of the courts). Solution is MAC (i.e. “a Scot”) followed by ER (i.e. “little hesitation”).

  1. Tell a person off in no uncertain terms, but don’t remove computer? (3,7,4,2)

Answer: LET SOMEONE HAVE IT. Solution satisfies “tell a person off in no uncertain terms” and, playfully, “don’t remove computer” – IT being short for Information Technology.

  1. Praise female – second (7)

Answer: FLATTER (i.e. “praise”). Solution is F (a recognised abbreviation of “female”) followed by LATTER (i.e. the “second” of two things).

  1. Fighters hurting, climbing at foot of hill (7)

Answer: TOREROS (i.e. “fighters”, specifically bullfighters on foot). Solution is SORE (i.e. “hurting”) reversed (indicated by “climbing” – this being a down clue) and placed after or “at foot of” TOR (i.e. “hill”), like so: TOR-EROS.

  1. People in the same school class maybe rose with importance unexpectedly (14)

Answer: CONTEMPORARIES (i.e. “people in the same school class maybe”). “Unexpectedly” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of ROSE and IMPORTANCE.

  1. Abandoning hotel, fiend has smashed dish (7)

Answer: GOULASH (i.e. “dish”). Solution is GHOUL (i.e. “fiend”) with the H removed (indicated by “abandoning hotel” – H being “hotel” in the phonetic alphabet) and the remainder followed by an anagram (indicated by “smashed”) of HAS, like so: GOUL-ASH.

  1. One whose work might result in a fiasco (11)

Answer: GLASSBLOWER. Solution satisfies the clue as a whole – a variant meaning of “fiasco” is a flask or bottle.

  1. Cornish tourist in ME upset police force (5)

Answer: EMMET (i.e. “Cornish tourist”, or, more specifically, a Cornish term for a tourist. Made to fit, anyone?) Solution is ME reversed (indicated by “upset” – this being a down clue) and followed by MET (i.e. “police force”, specifically the London Metropolitan Police), like so: EM-MET.

  1. Stir with dire men out to create political movement wanting land grab? (11)

Answer: IRREDENTISM (i.e. “political movement wanting land grab”. Over to Chambers again: “the doctrine of ‘redeeming’ territory from another state, especially where there is some historical claim to the territory or when an ethnic group seeks to rejoin the major part of the ethnic group in another state”). “Out” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of STIR and DIRE MEN.

  1. Gap outside old city, source of bloody riot (11)

Answer: DISTURBANCE (i.e. “riot”). Solution is DISTANCE (i.e. “gap”) wrapped around or placed “outside” of UR (i.e. “old city” – a favourite of cryptic crossword setters) and B (i.e. “source of bloody”, i.e. the first letter of “bloody”), like so: DIST(UR-B)ANCE.

  1. Go around in public, ultimately keen to stop criticism (8)

Answer: OUTFLANK (i.e. “go around”). Solution is OUT (i.e. “in public”) followed by N (i.e. “ultimately keen”, i.e. the last letter of “keen”) once placed in or “stopping” FLAK (i.e. “criticism”), like so: OUT-FLA(N)K.

  1. One in Somerset location left operating sporting event (8)

Answer: BIATHLON (i.e. “sporting event”). Solution is I (i.e. “[Roman numeral] one”) placed “in” BATH (i.e. “Somerset location”) and followed by L (a recognised abbreviation of “left”), then ON (i.e. “operating”), like so: B(I)ATH-L-ON.

  1. Stop gambler somehow losing pounds, ending with nothing (7)

Answer: EMBARGO (i.e. “stop”). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “somehow”) of GAMBLER once the L has been removed (indicated by “losing pounds”, L being a recognised abbreviation of pounds weight, after the Latin libra), followed by O (i.e. “nothing”), like so: EMBARG-O.

  1. Short piece specially placed on ‘orse – it may ease swelling (3,4)

Answer: ICE PACK (i.e. “it may ease swelling”). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “specially placed”) of PIECE once the last letter has been removed (indicated by “short”). This is then followed by ‘ACK (i.e. “’orse”. A variant meaning of hack is a horse. The H is dropped from each), like so: ICEP-‘ACK.

  1. Busiest afternoon accommodates it? Yes and no! (6)

Answer: SIESTA. “Accommodates it” indicates the solution has been hidden in the clue, like so: BU(SIEST A)FTERNOON. The remainder of the clue plays on how siestas aren’t exactly busy occasions.

  1. Mark part of body (5)

Answer: COLON. Solution satisfies punctuation “mark” and “part of body”.

  1. Among partners in game had to be bottom (5)

Answer: NATES (i.e. “bottom” or the buttocks in anatomy). Solution is ATE (i.e. “had”) placed “among” N and S (i.e. “partners in game”, specifically a game of bridge. Partners are situated North and South, or East and West), like so: N(ATE)S.

Times Jumbo Cryptic Crossword 1576

A medium strength Jumbo this week, though a little uneven in places. The bottom right corner smacked of the office GridFill 4000TM being wheeled out to get the setter over the line. Some good clues smoothed over the lumpy bits.

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 you flummoxed then you might find some assistance in my Just For Fun page, 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 they’ve set down their pens. Till next time, stay safe out there kids.

LP

FBV (French-By-Volume): 3.3%

Across clues

  1. Criminal gangs redirect delivery for an occasion (9,4)

Answer: GREETINGS CARD (i.e. “delivery for an occasion”). “Criminal” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of GANGS REDIRECT.

  1. In two languages, pasta and chips (no joints) (9)

Answer: MACARONIC (i.e. “in two languages” – over to Chambers: “written or including lines in more than one language”). Solution is MACARONI (i.e. “pasta”) followed by C (i.e. “chips (no joints)”, i.e. the word “chips” with the “hips” removed).

  1. Order this sort of pie? (5)

Answer: APPLE. Clue riffs on a thing that is perfect or in “apple-pie order”. That’s about it, I guess.

  1. Be able to appear respectable: cancel being in court, or part of it (5,2,4)

Answer: SCRUB UP WELL (i.e. “be able to appear respectable”). Solution is SCRUB (i.e. to “cancel”) followed by UP (i.e. “being in court”) and WELL (i.e. “part of [a court]”, being an open space in the middle of a courtroom).

  1. Chinese invading borders of Georgia and another land (5)

Answer: GHANA (i.e. country or “land”). Solution is HAN (i.e. “Chinese”) placed in or “invading” GA (i.e. “borders of Georgia”, i.e. the first and last letters of “Georgia”), like so: G(HAN)A.

  1. What dog owners may need exhausts the shop (4,5)

Answer: POOP SCOOP (i.e. “what dog owners may need” – if Norwich’s dog owners are anything to go by, I would prescribe something far more draconian). Solution is POOPS (i.e. “exhausts”) followed by CO-OP (i.e. “shop”).

  1. With compost round, one gets impressive display of colour (4)

Answer: RIOT (i.e. “impressive display of colour”). Solution is ROT (i.e. to “compost”) wrapped “round” I (i.e. “[Roman numeral] one”), like so: R(I)OT.

  1. Persecutor almost looks to turn sweet (5-3)

Answer: BULL’S-EYE (i.e. “sweet”). Solution is BULLY (i.e. “persecutor”) with the last letter removed (indicated by “almost”) and the remainder followed by EYES (i.e. “looks”) once reversed (indicated by “to turn”), like so: BULL-SEYE.

  1. A god was relaxing with some pot (6)

Answer: SATURN (i.e. “a god”). Solution is SAT (i.e. “was relaxing”) followed by URN (i.e. “some pot”). Nicely worked.

  1. All that cocaine’s mixed with Ecstasy: it takes away the pain (5,11)

Answer: LOCAL ANAESTHETIC (i.e. “it takes away the pain”). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “mixed”) of ALL THAT COCAINE’S and E (street name for the drug “Ecstasy”). Nicely done.

  1. Muriel maybe is about due to return for some preparatory effort (9)

Answer: SPADEWORK (i.e. “preparatory effort”). Solution is SPARK (i.e. “Muriel maybe” – other Sparks are available) wrapped “about” OWED (i.e. “due”) once reversed (indicated by “to return”), like so: SPA(DEWO)RK.

  1. What one may do to rear? (5,2)

Answer: BRING UP (i.e. “to rear”). Clue also plays on the phrase “bringing up the rear”.

  1. Good bed’s ornamental edging (5)

Answer: PICOT (i.e. “ornamental edging”). Solution is PI (i.e. “good”, short for pious) followed by COT (i.e. “bed”).

  1. Hospital: uncle without uniform, having changed – into these? (5,7)

Answer: PLAIN CLOTHES. Solution satisfies the clue in general but is also an anagram (indicated by “having changed”) of HOSPITAL UNCLE once the U has been removed (indicated by “without uniform” – U being Uniform in the phonetic alphabet).

  1. An excellent article on puppet regimes linked to America (6,4)

Answer: DOLLAR AREA (i.e. “regimes linked to America[‘s currency]”). Solution is A RARE A (i.e. “an excellent article” – an article being a word like a, an or the) placed “on” or after DOLL (i.e. “puppet”), like so: DOLL-(A-RARE-A).

  1. Always no hurry, when in the world (3,3,4)

Answer: ALL THE TIME (i.e. “always”). The remainder of the clue plays on Louis Armstrong’s song We Have All The Time In The World.

  1. Memento mori embraced as an alternative (5,7)

Answer: DANSE MACABRE (i.e. “memento mori”, or a reminder of one’s mortality. The dance of death, meanwhile, is “a series of allegorical paintings symbolising the universal power of death, which is represented as a skeleton” (Chambers)). “Alternative” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of EMBRACED AS AN. Also, it’s a French phrase so you know what that means…

  1. Hour to get sheep inside chopper (5)

Answer: HEWER (i.e. “chopper”). Solution is HR (a recognised abbreviation of “hour”) wrapped around or “getting…inside” EWE (i.e. “sheep”), like so: H(EWE)R.

  1. Married, Romeo at first improved (7)

Answer: RALLIED (i.e. “improved”). Solution is ALLIED (i.e. “married”) placed after or having “first” R (“Romeo” in the phonetic alphabet), like so: R-ALLIED.

  1. Perhaps this in volume in party, say, to get sloshed (3,2,4)

Answer: VIN DU PAYS. Solution satisfies the clue in general, but also comprises V (a recognised abbreviation of “volume”), IN, DUP (i.e. “party”, specifically the Democratic Unionist Party) and an anagram (indicated by “to get sloshed”) of SAY, like so: V-IN-DUP-AYS.

  1. Piece of legislation is bad – incarcerates a lot (4,9,3)

Answer: RACE RELATIONS ACT (i.e. “piece of legislation”). “Is bad” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of INCARCERATES A LOT.

  1. Composer’s work used in feature (6)

Answer: Frédéric CHOPIN (i.e. “composer”). Solution is OP (i.e. “work”, short for “opus”) placed “in” CHIN (i.e. facial “feature”), like so: CH(OP)IN.

  1. The charm of Orientalism, any piece (8)

Answer: TALISMAN (i.e. “charm”). “Piece” indicates the solution has been hidden in the clue, like so: ORIEN(TALISM AN)Y.

  1. God only half assiduous (4)

Answer: THOR (i.e. “god”). Solution is THOROUGH (i.e. “assiduous”) with the latter “half” removed.

  1. High quality chess victory for another person in form (9)

Answer: CLASSMATE (i.e. “another person in form”). Solution is CLASS (i.e. “high quality”) followed by MATE (i.e. “chess victory”).

  1. Clumsy Russian author being recited (5)

Answer: GAWKY (i.e. “clumsy”). “Being recited” indicates homophone. Solution is a homophone of Maxim GORKY (i.e. “Russian author”).

  1. Reinforcement of love, overcoming resistance with some silver, perhaps (6,5)

Answer: ARMOUR PLATE (i.e. “reinforcement”). Solution is AMOUR (i.e. “love”) wrapped around or “overcoming” R (a recognised abbreviation of “resistance” used in physics) and followed by PLATE (i.e. “some silver, perhaps”), like so: A(R)MOUR-PLATE.

  1. Warmer in East London for swimmer (5)

Answer: OTTER (i.e. “swimmer”). Solution is HOTTER (i.e. “warmer”) with the H removed (indicated by “in East London”, as in ‘ow all ‘em cockneys keep droppin’ their bleedin’ aitches, gawblessem, jellied eels and so on).

  1. Knot hurt – asked for loosening (5,4)

Answer: TURK’S HEAD (i.e. “knot”). “Loosening” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of HURT ASKED.

  1. Charitable governors add ancient family members to tree (5,8)

Answer: ELDER BRETHREN (i.e. “charitable governors”, or, according to Chambers: “the governing members of the Corporation of Trinity House”, an organisation that looks after lighthouses and the welfare of seafolk. A new one on me). Solution is BRETHREN (i.e. “ancient family members”, I guess, though the word seems more clubby or cliquey to me than just plain old) placed after or “added” to ELDER (i.e. “tree”).

Down clues

  1. Football fixtures that are unfairly moved? (9)

Answer: GOALPOSTS (i.e. “football fixtures”). The remainder of the clue riffs on the phrase “moving the goalposts”, descriptive of something that is “unfair”.

  1. Abandoned conspiracy retains one achievement (7)

Answer: EXPLOIT (i.e. “achievement”). Solution is EX-PLOT (i.e. “abandoned conspiracy”) wrapped around or “retaining” I (i.e. “[Roman numeral] one”), like so: EX-PLO(I)T.

  1. Given bum steer, encourage one to attack the crown? (4,7)

Answer: TREE SURGEON (i.e. “one to attack the crown” – one meaning of “crown” is “the top of anything”, a tree in this case). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “bum”) of STEER followed by URGE ON (i.e. “encourage”), like so: TREES-(URGE-ON).

  1. With surprised expression, boy turns up? He doesn’t (2-4)

Answer: NO-SHOW (i.e. “he doesn’t [turn up]”). Solution is W (a recognised abbreviation of “with”), OH (i.e. “surprised expression”) and SON (i.e. “boy”) all reversed (indicated by “turns up” – this being a down clue), like so: NOS-HO-W.

  1. In which to stick boxing memorabilia? (9)

Answer: SCRAPBOOK (i.e. “in which to stick…memorabilia”). Clue plays on “boxing” being a fight or SCRAP. You get the idea.

  1. One strolling across hill in the morning: one’s risky on the road (5,7)

Answer: AMBER GAMBLER (i.e. “one’s risky on the road”). When written as AM BERG AMBLER the clue also playfully satisfies “one strolling across hill in the morning”.

  1. Lowers head leaving the country, with all-consuming compulsion? (10)

Answer: DIPSOMANIA (i.e. “all-consuming compulsion” – Chambers meanwhile offers “an intermittent pathological craving for alcohol”, which is quite a bit more specific. (Makes so-so gesture…)). Solution is DIPS (i.e. “lowers”) followed by ROMANIA (i.e. “country”) once its first letter has been removed (indicated by “head leaving”), like so: DIPS-OMANIA.

  1. Air of excitement initially rising in excavation (4)

Answer: MIEN (i.e. “air” or manner). Solution is MINE (i.e. “excavation”) with the E (i.e. “excitement initially”, i.e. the first letter of “excitement”) knocked back a notch (indicated by “rising” – this being a down clue), like so: MIN(E) => MI(E)N.

  1. Part of paper suggesting hair dye? (6,10)

Answer: COLOUR SUPPLEMENT. Solution satisfies “part of [news]paper” and, playfully, “suggesting hair dye”.

  1. Magnificent plate put on table at intervals (5)

Answer: REGAL (i.e. “magnificent”). Solution is REG (i.e. number “plate”) followed by AL (i.e. “table at intervals”, i.e. every other letter of TABLE).

  1. Most elegant to take meals in home? (7)

Answer: NEATEST (i.e. “most elegant”). Solution is EAT (i.e. “take meals”) placed “in” NEST (i.e. “home”), like so: N(EAT)EST.

  1. Yellow little house and ground (6,7)

Answer: CRAVEN COTTAGE (i.e. football “ground” of Fulham). Solution is CRAVEN (i.e. “yellow” or cowardly) followed by COTTAGE (i.e. “little house”).

  1. Optimist’s painful emotion at bereavement (8)

Answer: PANGLOSS (i.e. “optimist” of Voltaire’s Candide). Solution is PANG (i.e. “painful emotion”) followed by LOSS (i.e. “bereavement”).

  1. One talking up a sort of market? (5)

Answer: HYPER. Solution satisfies “one talking up” and “sort of market”.

  1. Alarmed at flying fragments pictured all round, result of military blunder? (10,6)

Answer: COLLATERAL DAMAGE (i.e. “result of military blunder”, weasel words for civilian casualties). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “flying”) of ALARMED AT placed in or having “all round” COLLAGE (i.e. “fragments pictured”), like so: COLLA(TERAL DAMA)GE.

  1. Suddenly a bill, smaller than expected? (2,1,4)

Answer: AT A BLOW (i.e. “suddenly”). Solution is A followed by TAB (i.e. “bill”) and LOW (i.e. “smaller than expected”).

  1. Some innards in sauce rebranded as “brains” (7)

Answer: CEREBRA (i.e. “brains”). “Some innards in” indicates the solution has been hidden in the clue, like so: SAU(CE REBRA)NDED.

  1. Devote energy to game together, woman leaving to toy with beau? (4,4,2,3)

Answer: PLAY HARD TO GET (i.e. “toy with beau”). Solution is PLAY HARD (i.e. “devote energy to game”) followed by TOGETHER once the HER has been removed (indicated by “woman leaving”), like so: PLAY-HARD-TOGET.

  1. Pattern of headgear commonly found in centre of worship (8)

Answer: TEMPLATE (i.e. “pattern”). Solution is HAT (i.e. “headgear”) with the H removed (indicated by “commonly”, droppin’ ‘em bleedin’ aitches again, inney?) and the remainder placed “in” TEMPLE (i.e. “centre of worship”), like so: TEMPL(AT)E.

  1. Patterned container, coloured, to hold football kit (5-7)

Answer: CANDY-STRIPED (i.e. “patterned”). Solution is CAN (i.e. “container”) followed by DYED (i.e. “coloured”) once wrapped around or “holding” STRIP (i.e. “football kit”), like so: CAN-DY(STRIP)ED.

  1. One employing personnel without strong emotion (5)

Answer: HIRER (i.e. “one employing”). Solution is HR (i.e. “personnel”, specifically Human Resources) wrapped around or placed “without” IRE (i.e. “strong emotion”), like so: H(IRE)R.

  1. Having to go suddenly, thought cars unreliable (6,5)

Answer: CAUGHT SHORT (i.e. “having to go [to the toilet] suddenly”). “Unreliable” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of THOUGHT CARS.

  1. Big building accommodates you in very large superstructure (5,5)

Answer: PILOT HOUSE (i.e. “superstructure” – over to Chambers: “a shelter for steering-gear and pilot”. I’d argue “superstructure” is too generic a target word, but I guess it does make the clue scan). Solution is PILE (i.e. “big building”) wrapped around or “accommodating” THOU (i.e. “you”) once it has been placed “in” OS (i.e. “very large”, specifically a recognised abbreviation of “outsized”), like so: PIL(O(THOU)S)E.

  1. Committee member failing check on appearance (4-5)

Answer: VICE-CHAIR (i.e. “committee member”). Solution is VICE (i.e. “failing”) followed by CH (a recognised abbreviation of “check” used in chess) and AIR (i.e. “appearance”).

  1. Council nursing home man given inadequate fluid (9)

Answer: SANHEDRIN (i.e. Jewish “council” – no, me neither). Solution is SAN (i.e. “nursing home”, short for a sanatorium) followed by HE (i.e. “man”) and DRINK (i.e. “fluid”) once its last letter has been removed (indicated by “inadequate”). Hmm. Every time I see an exotic solution on the perimeter of a Jumbo, it doesn’t half whiff of algorithmic placement. Needless to say, Bradford’s bailed me out here.

  1. Napoleon’s invasion of Russia, latterly perhaps a very tense period (4,3)

Answer: COLD WAR. Judging from the phrasing, it would seem the clue satisfies “Napoleon’s invasion of Russia” of 1812, though I’m not seeing too many references explicitly calling it such, and “latterly perhaps a very tense period”, referring to the Cold War that brewed between the US and Russia during the 1950s-80s. I could be missing something clever, though.

  1. Equivocate, holding Saint David wrote this (7)

Answer: The Book of Psalms or PSALTER (i.e. “David wrote this”, though this appears to be contested). Solution is PALTER (i.e. “equivocate”) wrapped around or “holding” S (a recognised abbreviation of “saint”), like so: P(S)ALTER. Another win for my Bradford’s.

  1. Nurse, around the end of extensive working life (6)

Answer: CAREER (i.e. “nurse”). Solution is CARER (i.e. “nurse”) wrapped “around” E (i.e. “end of extensive”, i.e. the last letter of “extensive”), like so: CAR(E)ER.

  1. The way indeed to get infections (5)

Answer: STYES (i.e. “infections”). Solution is ST (i.e. “the way”, specifically a recognised abbreviation of a street) followed by YES (i.e. “indeed”).

  1. Surrounded by help, Mike pitched in (4)

Answer: AMID (i.e. “surrounded by”). Solution is AID (i.e. “help”) with M (“Mike” in the phonetic alphabet) “pitched in”, like so: A(M)ID.

Times Jumbo Cryptic Crossword 1575

A relatively straightforward Jumbo this week, albeit one leavened with the occasional spicy clue. There seemed to be a bit of a cultural mini-theme developing at one point too, what with Shakespeare and Carroll and Ibsen and that Greek bloke and Shakespeare again and probably a few others I can’t recall. Still, rather that than obscure geographical stuff few people are going to know outright. Oh, hello, Edmonton…

Anyway, 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 left you for dust then you might find succour in my Just For Fun page, 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 they’ve put down their pens. Till next time, stay safe out there kids.

LP

Across clues

  1. So Roman hosts ladies perhaps from Prague? (6)

Answer: SLAVIC (i.e. “perhaps from Prague”). Solution is SIC (i.e. “So Roman”, i.e. the Latin for “so” or thus) wrapped around or “hosting” LAV (i.e. “ladies”, short for lavatory), like so: S(LAV)IC.

  1. Once again gather take after pocketing a shilling (10)

Answer: REASSEMBLE (i.e. “once again gather”). Solution is RESEMBLE (i.e. “take after”) wrapped around or “pocketing” A and S (a recognised abbreviation of “shilling”), like so: RE(A-S)SEMBLE.

  1. Filled with seasoning, starter of lamb cut (5)

Answer: SATED (i.e. “filled”). Solution is SALTED (i.e. “with seasoning”) once the L has been removed (indicated by “starter of lamb cut”, i.e. the first letter of “lamb”).

  1. Battling with setter primarily what cryptic crosswords offer (9)

Answer: SWORDPLAY (i.e. “battling”). Solution is S (i.e. “setter primarily”, i.e. the first letter of “setter”) followed by WORDPLAY (i.e. “what cryptic crosswords offer”). Simple, but nicely worked.

  1. Worst rogue caught in lie, ultimately shady, could be described thus? (13)

Answer: UNTRUSTWORTHY. The solution satisfies the clue as a whole, but is also an anagram (indicated by “rogue”) of WORST placed or “caught in” UNTRUTH (i.e. “lie”) and followed by Y (i.e. “ultimately shady”, i.e. the last letter of “shady”), like so: UNTRU(STWOR)TH-Y.

  1. Extremely eccentric discussion item is misplaced (7)

Answer: ECTOPIC (i.e. in an abnormal position or “misplaced”). Solution is EC (i.e. “extremely eccentric”, i.e. the first and last letters of “eccentric”) followed by TOPIC (i.e. “discussion item”).

  1. Reptile wanting soft ground (7)

Answer: TERRAIN (i.e. “ground”). Solution is TERRAPIN (i.e. “reptile”) with the P removed (indicated by “wanting soft”, P being a recognised abbreviation of “piano” or quiet or soft in musical lingo).

  1. Public flogging for all to see during battle (7)

Answer: AUCTION (i.e. “public flogging”). Solution is U (i.e. “for all to see”, i.e. the U certificate given to family-friendly films) placed “during” ACTION (i.e. “battle”), like so: A(U)CTION.

  1. What the Globe Theatre might tell us? (3,3,6,1,5)

Answer: ALL THE WORLD’S A STAGE. Solution satisfies the clue as a whole, given the Globe Theatre would show William Shakespeare’s plays, and the solution is a line from As You Like It. Also WORLD = “Globe”, you get the idea, etc etc.

  1. Tot losing heart in nightmare? (4)

Answer: DRAM (i.e. “tot” or short measure of drink). Solution is DREAM (i.e. “nightmare”) with the middle letter or “heart” removed.

  1. Former leader Macbeth’s seen here (5)

Answer: HEATH. Solution satisfies “former leader”, specifically the former PM Edward HEATH, and “Macbeth’s seen here” – more Shakespeare, luvvies, this time referring to the blasted heath of The Scottish Play.

  1. Figure working picked out tool (5,3)

Answer: TENON SAW (i.e. “tool”). Solution is TEN (i.e. “figure” or number) followed by ON (i.e. “working”), then SAW (i.e. “picked out”).

  1. Day fashion journalist gets ahead in capital city (8)

Answer: EDMONTON (i.e. “capital city” of Alberta, a Canadian province). Solution is MON (i.e. “day”, specifically a shortened form of “Monday”) followed by TON (i.e. “fashion”, a variant meaning of the word seldom seen outside of cryptic crosswords) both placed after or having “ahead” ED (i.e. “journalist”, short for editor), like so: ED-(MON-TON).

  1. Play – if given this? (1,5,5)

Answer: A DOLL’S HOUSE. The solution satisfies the clue as a whole, and is also the name of a “play” by Henrik Ibsen. Again, simple, but nicely worked.

  1. Coming to pass, right back hoping to hold Arsenal’s No. 5 (11)

Answer: TRANSPIRING (i.e. “coming to pass”). Solution is RT (a recognised abbreviation of “right”, e.g. Rt Hon) reversed (indicated by “back”) and followed by ASPIRING (i.e. “hoping”) once wrapped around or “holding”) N (i.e. “Arsenal’s No. 5”, i.e. the fifth letter of “Arsenal”), like so: TR-A(N)SPIRING.

  1. One grinning teacher is travelling past Switzerland (8,3)

Answer: CHESHIRE CAT (i.e. “one grinning” in Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures In Wonderland). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “travelling”) of TEACHER IS once placed after or “past” CH (country code of “Switzerland”, from the Latin Confederatio Helvetica), like so: CH-ESHIRECAT.

  1. Cryptic indication of “par” or standard (3,3,5)

Answer: OLD MAN RIVER (i.e. “standard” or song from the musical Show Boat – though it seems this ought to have been OL’ MAN RIVER). Clue plays on how the solution could “cryptically indicate” the word “par”, being formed of “pa” (i.e. “old man” or father) and R (a recognised abbreviation of “river”).

  1. Duck sandwiches left with old piece of meat (8)

Answer: ESCALOPE (i.e. “piece of meat”). Solution is ESCAPE (i.e. “duck” or dodge) wrapped around or “sandwiching” L (a recognised abbreviation of “left”) and O (ditto “old”), like so: ESCA(L-O)PE.

  1. A politician sacked at first for explosive stuff (8)

Answer: FIREDAMP (i.e. “explosive stuff”, or coal gas). Solution is A and MP (i.e. “politician”, specifically a Member of Parliament) both placed after or having “at first” FIRED (i.e. “sacked”), like so: FIRED-(A-MP).

  1. Biblical figure, one keen to head west (5)

Answer: NAOMI (i.e. “biblical figure”). Solution is I (i.e. “[Roman numeral] one”) and MOAN (i.e. “keen” or wail) all reversed (indicated by “to head west” – this being an across clue), like so: NAOM-I.

  1. Group of students finally pay attention (4)

Answer: YEAR (i.e. “group of students”). Solution is Y (i.e. “finally pay”, i.e. the last letter of “pay”) followed by EAR (i.e. “attention”).

  1. Try hard to move away from kerb everywhere you can catch a bus (4,3,3,3,5)

Answer: PULL OUT ALL THE STOPS (i.e. “try hard”). Solution is PULL OUT (i.e. “move away from kerb”) followed by ALL THE STOPS (descriptive of “everywhere you can catch a bus”).

  1. Agreeable overlooking lake for rustic sort (7)

Answer: PEASANT (i.e. “rustic sort”). Solution is PLEASANT (i.e. “agreeable”) with the L removed (indicated by “overlooking lake” – L being a recognised abbreviation of “lake”).

  1. Bank bordering Severn periodically smaller (7)

Answer: TEENIER (i.e. “smaller”). Solution is TIER (i.e. “bank”) wrapped around or “bordering” EEN (i.e. “Severn periodically”, i.e. every other letter of SEVERN), like so: T(EEN)IER.

  1. Concerning vision of the compiler in plump state (7)

Answer: OPTICAL (i.e. “concerning vision”). Solution is I (i.e. “the compiler” from the point of view of the setter) placed “in” between OPT (i.e. to “plump” for, i.e. to choose or select decisively) and CAL (i.e. a recognised abbreviation of the US “state” of California), like so: OPT-(I)-CAL.

  1. Person displaying dog I wrapped in brown waterproof sheet (6,7)

Answer: SHOWER CURTAIN (i.e. “waterproof sheet”). Solution is SHOWER (i.e. “person displaying”) followed by CUR (i.e. “dog”) and I once placed or “wrapped in” TAN (i.e. “brown”), like so: SHOWER-CUR-TA(I)N.

  1. Red part in shell of vacant vehicle (9)

Answer: CHEVROLET (i.e. “vehicle”). Solution is CHE Guevara (i.e. “red” or famed communist) followed by ROLE (i.e. “part”) once placed “in” VT (i.e. “shell of vacant”, i.e. the word “vacant” with all its middle letters removed), like so: CHE-V(ROLE)T.

  1. Silly billy possibly picked up frozen water (5)

Answer: RHYME (i.e. “silly billy possibly”). “Picked up” indicates homophone. Solution is a homophone of RIME (i.e. frost or “frozen water”).

  1. After school, foolishly indulge in timetabling (10)

Answer: SCHEDULING (i.e. “timetabling”). Solution is SCH (a recognised abbreviation of “school”) followed by an anagram (indicated by “foolishly”) of INDULGE, like so: SCH-EDULING.

  1. Look, what striking clothes! (6)

Answer: BEHOLD (i.e. “look”). Solution is EH (i.e. “what”, as in eh? what? pardon?) placed in or “clothed” by BOLD (i.e. “striking”), like so: B(EH)OLD.

Down clues

  1. Cheek on knight pinched by every Englishman (9)

Answer: SASSENACH (i.e. a Scottish derogatory term for an “Englishman”). Solution is SASS (i.e. “cheek”) followed by N (a recognised abbreviation of “knight” used in chess) once placed in or “pinched by” EACH (i.e. “every”), like so: SASS-E(N)ACH.

  1. American, working as a cashier, has a party drink (11)

Answer: AMONTILLADO (i.e. “drink”). Solution is AM (a recognised abbreviation of “American”) followed by ON TILL (i.e. “working as a cashier”), then A and DO (i.e. “party”).

  1. Pint he’d drunk to the bottom (2,5)

Answer: IN DEPTH (i.e. “to the bottom”). “Drunk” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of PINT HE’D.

  1. Pain to enter borders of easternmost land (5)

Answer: EGYPT (i.e. country or “land”). Solution is GYP (i.e. “pain”) placed in or “entering” ET (i.e. “borders of easternmost”, i.e. the first and last letters of “easternmost”), like so: E(GYP)T.

  1. Activity for couples, uncool, inside European clubs (6,5)

Answer: SQUARE DANCE (i.e. “activity for couples”). Solution is SQUARE (i.e. “uncool”) followed by DANE (i.e. “European”) once wrapped around or having “inside” C (a recognised abbreviation of “clubs” used in card games), like so: SQUARE-DAN(C)E.

  1. Run with wanderer, no run going too far (11)

Answer: EXTRAVAGANT (i.e. “going too far”). Solution is EXTRA (i.e. a “run” in cricket) followed by VAGRANT (i.e. “wanderer”) once the R has been removed (indicated by “no run” – R being a recognised abbreviation of “run” used in ball games), like so: EXTRA-VAGANT.

  1. Sporty student lifted weight with energy in reduced interval (4,4)

Answer: BLUE NOTE (i.e. “reduced interval” – over to Chambers: “a flattened note, usually third or seventh, characteristic of the blues”). Solution is BLUE (i.e. “sporty student” of Oxford or Cambridge) followed by TON (i.e. “weight”) once reversed (indicated by “lifted” – this being a down clue), then E (a recognised abbreviation of “energy”), like so: BLUE-NOT-E. One nailed from the wordplay, if I’m honest.

  1. Distant way over mountains crossed by Edward (9)

Answer: ESTRANGED (i.e. “distant”). Solution is ST (i.e. “way”, specifically a recognised abbreviation of “street”) and RANGE (i.e. “mountains”) all placed in or “crossed by” ED (short for “Edward”), like so: E(ST-RANGE)D.

  1. Brit getting taps or knock on the head (6)

Answer: SCOTCH (i.e. to end or “knock on the head”). Solution is SCOT (i.e. “Brit”) followed by C and H (i.e. “taps”, short for “cold” and “hot” respectively).

  1. I disapprove about providing king with vermouth served up for dessert (5-6)

Answer: TUTTI-FRUTTI (i.e. “dessert”). Solution is TUT-TUT (i.e. “I disapprove”) wrapped “about” IF (i.e. “providing”) and R (a recognised abbreviation of “king”, specifically the Latin Rex) and followed by IT (i.e. Italian “vermouth”, a recognised abbreviation. No, me neither) once reversed (indicated by “served up” – this being a down clue), like so: TUT-T(IF-R)UT-TI. One of those clues that were a hell of a lot easier to guess than to parse!

  1. Master cook given foreign bread (5)

Answer: DOYEN (i.e. “master”). Solution is DO (i.e. “cook”) followed by YEN (i.e. “foreign bread”, specifically the currency of Japan).

  1. Observe timepiece, having disheartened employer? This person may (5-7)

Answer: CLOCK-WATCHER. Solution satisfies the clue as a whole, but is also formed from CLOCK (i.e. to “observe”) followed by WATCH (i.e. “timepiece”) and ER (i.e. “disheartened employer”, i.e. the word “employer” with all the middle letters removed).

  1. Drop of whiskey rejected by flier that’s put on a little weight (8)

Answer: RENOUNCE (i.e. “drop”). Solution is WREN (i.e. bird or “flier”) with the W removed (indicated by “whiskey rejected by…” – W being whiskey in the phonetic alphabet) and the remainder reversed (indicated by “rejected”). This is then followed by OUNCE (i.e. “a little weight”), like so: REN-OUNCE.

  1. Coach and horse surrounded by horse with raised tail (7)

Answer: MANAGER (i.e. “coach”). Solution is NAG (i.e. “horse”) placed in or “surrounded by” MARE (i.e. “horse”) once its last letter or “tail” has been brought back a notch or “raised” – this being a down clue, like so: MAR(E) => MA(E)R => MA(NAG)ER.

  1. Place with resistance for current particle (8)

Answer: POSITRON (i.e. “particle”). Solution is POSITION (i.e. “place”) with the latter I (a recognised abbreviation of an electric “current” used in physics) swapped “for” R (ditto “resistance”), like so: POSIT(I)ON => POSIT(R)ON.

  1. Male golfer’s going to succeed in awful place (8)

Answer: HELLHOLE (i.e. “awful place”). When written as HE’LL HOLE the solution also satisfies “male golfer’s going to succeed”.

  1. Possible reason for booking hotel as well as formal do (8)

Answer: HANDBALL (i.e. “possible reason for booking” in a game of football). Solution is H (“hotel” in the phonetic alphabet) followed by AND (i.e. “as well as”) and BALL (i.e. “formal do”).

  1. Learner in pain with fancy, spurious science (7)

Answer: ALCHEMY (i.e. “spurious science”). Solution is L (a recognised abbreviation of “learner”) placed “in” ACHE (i.e. “pain”) and followed by MY (i.e. “fancy”, both exclamations), like so: A(L)CHE-MY.

  1. Might one snipe start to sing, interrupting clever owl? (12)

Answer: SHARPSHOOTER (i.e. “might one snipe…?”) Solution is S (i.e. “start to sing”, i.e. the first letter of “sing”) placed in or “interrupting” SHARP (i.e. “clever”) and HOOTER (i.e. “owl”), like so: SHARP-(S)-HOOTER.

  1. Old priest with Conservatives on both sides expressing sudden emotion (11)

Answer: EXCLAMATORY (i.e. “expressing sudden emotion”). Solution is EX (i.e. “old”) followed by LAMA (i.e. Buddhist “priest”) once placed between or having on “both sides” C and TORY (i.e. “Conservatives” – the former a recognised abbreviation thereof), like so: EX-(C-(LAMA)-TORY).

  1. Queen’s stand-in, perhaps, in bar butted in rudely (7,4)

Answer: TRIBUTE BAND (i.e. “Queen’s stand-in, perhaps” – other cover bands are available. So… many… cover bands…) “Rudely” indicates anagram. Solution is BAR BUTTED IN.

  1. Running round before games, using good sense (11)

Answer: OPERATIONAL (i.e. “running”). Solution is O (i.e. “round”) followed by PE (i.e. “games”, specifically a recognised abbreviation of Physical Education) and RATIONAL (i.e. “using good sense”).

  1. After 5.10, I’m leaving Italian liqueur for one in orchestra (11)

Answer: VIOLONCELLO (i.e. “one in orchestra”). Solution is V (i.e. “[Roman numeral] five”) followed by IO (representative of “10” in the clue) and LIMONCELLO (i.e. “Italian liqueur” once the IM has been removed (indicated by “I’m leaving…”), like so: V-IO-LONCELLO.

  1. Young bird with chills getting medical treatments (9)

Answer: POULTICES (i.e. “medical treatments”). Solution is POULT (i.e. “young bird”) followed by ICES (i.e. “chills”).

  1. Covered area, slated on the outside (9)

Answer: INSULATED (i.e. “covered”). Solution is A (a recognised abbreviation of “area”) once placed in or having “outside” INSULTED (i.e. “slated”), like so: INSUL(A)TED.

  1. Phrase containing line by mischievous Greek writer (8)

Answer: PLUTARCH (i.e. “Greek writer” and philosopher – again, me neither. He was a bit before my time. Chalk one to my Bradford’s here). Solution is PUT (i.e. to “phrase”) wrapped around or “containing” L (a recognised abbreviation of “line”) and followed by ARCH (i.e. “mischievous”), like so: P(L)UT-ARCH.

  1. Release group without charge (3,4)

Answer: SET FREE (i.e. “release”). Solution is SET (i.e. “group”) followed by FREE (i.e. “without charge”).

  1. Cell’s entrance blocked by this person (6)

Answer: GAMETE (i.e. “cell”). Solution is GATE (i.e. “entrance”) followed by ME (i.e. “this person” from the point of view of the setter), like so: GA(ME)TE.

  1. Someone sitting in more upmarket hospital departs (5)

Answer: POSER (i.e. “someone sitting” for an artist). Solution is POSHER (i.e. “more upmarket”) with the H removed (indicated by “hospital departs” – H being a recognised abbreviation of “hospital” used on maps).

  1. Suppose king’s gone scouting in the US (5)

Answer: RECON (i.e. “scouting in the US”, shortened form of reconnaissance). Solution is RECKON (i.e. “suppose”) with the K removed (indicated by “king’s gone” – K being a recognised abbreviation of “king” used in chess).

Times Jumbo Cryptic Crossword 1574

Phew, caught up at last! Thankfully this was a relatively straightforward one, apart from the odd fruity solution like VALPARAISO or BDELLIUM (good grief, setter). For the most part, though, this was another good un.

You can find my completed grid below along with explanations of my solutions where I have them. I hope you find them useful. If a recent Jumbo has done for you then you might find solace in my Just For Fun page, 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 they’ve put down their pens. Thanks also to the mysterious She for her expert Jumbo-hunting skills while I was away. Till next time… well, after all that typing I’m going to put my aching fingertips into something cold. Stay safe out there, kids.

LP

FBV (French-By-Volume): 5%

Across clues

  1. Woman with capital touring area round Chilean port (10)

Answer: VALPARAISO (i.e. “Chilean port”). Solution is VAL (i.e. “woman’s” name) followed by PARIS (i.e. “capital” city of France) once wrapped around A (a recognised abbreviation of “area”), then O (i.e. “round”), like so: VAL-PAR(A)IS-O. …aaaand straight to Bradford’s the moment I saw “port”. I’m sure it’s lovely there but life’s too short for clues like this. Also, I spy a French reference, so…

  1. Bishop, say, taking whisky and flavoured toffee (12)

Answer: BUTTERSCOTCH (i.e. “flavoured toffee”). Solution is B (a recognised abbreviation of “bishop” used in chess) followed by UTTER (i.e. “say”), then SCOTCH (i.e. “whisky”).

  1. Piece of fruit from damaged crate in square (9)

Answer: NECTARINE (i.e. “piece of fruit”). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “damaged”) of CRATE placed “in” NINE (i.e. “square” of three), like so: N(ECTAR)INE.

  1. Man absorbing girl’s turn of phrase (5)

Answer: IDIOM (i.e. “turn of phrase”). Solution is DI (i.e. “girl’s” name – another one) placed in or “absorbed” by IOM (a recognised abbreviation of the Isle of “Man”), like so: I(DI)OM.

  1. An accommodating type leaving house for studio (7)

Answer: ATELIER (i.e. “studio”). Solution is A HOTELIER (i.e. “an accommodating type”) with the HO removed (indicated by “leaving house” – HO being a recognised abbreviation of “house”), like so: A-TELIER.

  1. Disturbed by Shaw play, throw plans into confusion (5,3,9)

Answer: UPSET THE APPLECART (i.e. “throw plans into confusion”). Solution is UPSET (i.e. “disturbed”) followed by THE APPLECART (i.e. “Shaw play”).

  1. Daughter introducing well-ventilated source of milk products (5)

Answer: DAIRY (i.e. “of milk products”). Solution is D (a recognised abbreviation of “daughter”) followed by AIRY (i.e. “well-ventilated”).

  1. Like bristly growth displayed by learner in squat (7)

Answer: STUBBLY (i.e. “like bristly growth”). Solution is L (a recognised abbreviation of “learner”) placed “in” STUBBY (i.e. “squat”), like so: STUBB(L)Y.

  1. Struggle ultimately set American ship against the French (6)

Answer: TUSSLE (i.e. “struggle”). Solution is T (i.e. “ultimately set”, i.e. the last letter of “set”) followed by USS (i.e. “American ship”, short for United States Ship or Steamer), then LE (i.e. “the French”, i.e. the masculine form of “the” in French). Another French reference, so…

  1. Like erupting mountain with very old clan oddly in charge (8)

Answer: VOLCANIC (i.e. “like erupting mountain”). Solution is V (a recognised abbreviation of “very”) followed by O (ditto “old”), then an anagram (indicated by “oddly”) of CLAN, then IC (a recognised abbreviation of “in charge”), like so: V-O-LCAN-IC.

  1. Examine first of patients overcome by bug (7)

Answer: INSPECT (i.e. “examine”). Solution is P (i.e. “first [letter] of patients”) placed in or “overcome by” INSECT (i.e. “bug”), like so: INS(P)ECT.

  1. Tramp crossing wooded hollow, initially identifying gumtree (8)

Answer: BDELLIUM (i.e. “gumtree”). Solution is BUM (i.e. “tramp”) wrapped around or “crossing” DELL (i.e. “wooded hollow”) and I (i.e. “initially identifying”, i.e. the first letter of “identifying”), like so: B(DELL-I)UM. Another win for my Bradford’s. I had a feeling this was going to be another of those made-to-fit solutions setters reach for when they can’t be arsed reworking an awkward area of the grid.

  1. Cook meal finally rejected by weight watcher (6)

Answer: SIMMER (i.e. “cook”). Solution is SLIMMER (i.e. “weight watcher”) with the L removed (indicated by “meal finally rejected”, i.e. the last letter of “meal”).

  1. Eerie quality of spoken words framed by good entertainers (11)

Answer: GHOSTLINESS (i.e. “eerie quality”). Solution is LINES (i.e. “spoken words”) placed in or “framed by” G (a recognised abbreviation of “good”) and HOSTS (i.e. “entertainers”), like so: G-HOST(LINES)S.

  1. Republican priest with capacity for trustworthiness (11)

Answer: RELIABILITY (i.e. “trustworthiness”). Solution is R (a recognised abbreviation of “Republican”) followed by ELI (i.e. biblical “priest”) and ABILITY (i.e. “capacity”).

  1. Mess one clears up if only slight (11)

Answer: SUPERFICIAL (i.e. “only slight”). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “mess”) of I (i.e. “[Roman numeral] one”) and CLEARS UP IF.

  1. In cold season attorney secures revolutionary outer garment (11)

Answer: WINDCHEATER (i.e. “outer garment”). Solution is WINTER (i.e. “cold season”) “in” which is placed DA (i.e. “attorney”, specifically a District Attorney) once it has been wrapped around or “securing” CHE Guevara (i.e. “revolutionary”), like so: WIN(D(CHE)A)TER.

  1. Invested in university, died outside it (6)

Answer: ENDUED (i.e. “invested in”). Solution is U (a recognised abbreviation of “university”) with ENDED (i.e. “died”) placed “outside it”, like so: END(U)ED.

  1. Books seized by leading press chief stupefied with drink (8)

Answer: BESOTTED (i.e. “stupefied with drink”). Solution is OT (i.e. “books”, specifically the Old Testament of The Bible) placed in or “seized by” BEST ED (i.e. “leading press chief”, ED being short for an editor), like so: BES(OT)T-ED.

  1. Head across border to find top cleric (7)

Answer: PRIMATE (i.e. “top cleric”). Solution is PATE (i.e. “head”) wrapped around or placed “across” RIM (i.e. “border”), like so: P(RIM)ATE.

  1. Records produced by shrewd American composer (8)

Answer: ARCHIVES (i.e. “records”). Solution is ARCH (i.e. “shrewd”) followed by Charles IVES (i.e. “American composer”).

  1. Part of fireplace king introduced to old PM (6)

Answer: HEARTH (i.e. “part of fireplace”). Solution is R (i.e. “king”, specifically a recognised abbreviation of the Latin Rex) placed in or “introduced to” Edward HEATH (i.e. “old PM”), like so: HEA(R)TH.

  1. Good fortune currently attending this old siege city (7)

Answer: LUCKNOW (i.e. “old siege city” during the Indian Rebellion of 1857. Yes, of course I looked it up). Solution is LUCK (i.e. “good fortune”) followed by NOW (i.e. “currently”).

  1. Senseless importuners dismissed from Macbeth’s castle (5)

Answer: INANE (i.e. “senseless”). Solution is DUNSINANE (i.e. “Macbeth’s castle”) with the DUNS removed (indicated by “importuners dismissed” – a variant meaning of DUN is one who pesters another for payment).

  1. More distinguished chap at NW city – or larger NW area (7,10)

Answer: GREATER MANCHESTER (i.e. “NW area” of England). Solution is GREATER (i.e. “more distinguished”) followed by MAN (i.e. “chap”) and CHESTER (i.e. “NW city” of England).

  1. Additional article – by him, do we assume? (7)

Answer: ANOTHER (i.e. “additional”). Solution is A (i.e. “article”, being a word like a, an or the) followed by NOT HER (i.e. “him, do we assume?”).

  1. A retired man from a foreign land (5)

Answer: ALIEN (i.e. “from a foreign land”). Solution A followed by NEIL (i.e. “man’s” name) once reversed (indicated by “retired”), like so: A-LIEN.

  1. Plant hanging down at end of bay, perhaps? (9)

Answer: HORSETAIL. Solution satisfies “plant” and playfully “hanging down at end of bay, perhaps” – referencing a type of horse.

  1. Text originator’s certificate, cornier western included (12)

Answer: SCRIPTWRITER (i.e. “text originator”). Solution is SCRIP (i.e. share “certificate”) followed by TRITER (i.e. “cornier”) once wrapped around or “including” W (a recognised abbreviation of “western”), like so: SCRIP-T(W)RITER.

  1. One who pledges to deal with people who are late? (10)

Answer: UNDERTAKER. Clue plays on two meanings of the word, i.e. one who undertakes to deal with something, and someone who handles the dead, or “late”. You get the idea.

Down clues

  1. Defeating first two in quiz, disappearing outside (11)

Answer: VANQUISHING (i.e. “defeating”). Solution is QU (i.e. “first two [letters] in quiz”) with VANISHING (i.e. “disappearing”) placed “outside” of it, like so: VAN(QU)ISHING.

  1. Place in which stripper wastes time? (5)

Answer: LOCUS (i.e. a position or “place”). Solution is LOCUST (i.e. “stripper” of plant life) with the T removed (indicated by “wastes time” – T being a recognised abbreviation of “time”).

  1. Flexible notice father put up on board (9)

Answer: ADAPTABLE (i.e. “flexible”). Solution is AD (i.e. “notice”, short for advertisement) followed by PA (i.e. “father”) once reversed (indicated by “put up” – this being a down clue), then TABLE (i.e. “board”), like so: AD-AP-TABLE.

  1. Remains extremely lazy about letter? It’s how some 39s behave (7)

Answer: APISHLY (i.e. “how some 39s behave” – the solution to 39a being PRIMATE). Solution is ASH (i.e. “remains”) and LY (i.e. “extremely lazy”, i.e. the first and last letters of “lazy”) all wrapped “about” PI (i.e. “letter”, specifically the sixteenth letter of the Greek alphabet), like so: A(PI)SH-LY.

  1. Agitation at confining king in royal house once (7)

Answer: STEWART (i.e. “royal house once”). Solution is STEW (i.e. “agitation”) followed by AT once wrapped around R (i.e. “king”, short for Rex, covered earlier), like so: STEW-A(R)T.

  1. Like protozoans, extremely unusual in college wine vault (11)

Answer: UNICELLULAR (i.e. “like protozoans”). Solution is UL (i.e. “extremely unusual”, i.e. the first and last letters of “unusual”) placed “in” UNI (i.e. “college”, short for university) and CELLAR (i.e. “wine vault”), like so: UNI-CELL(UL)AR.

  1. Male Abyssinian, perhaps, completely taking in host? (6)

Answer: TOMCAT (i.e. “male Abyssinian, perhaps” – other breeds are available). Solution is TO A T (i.e. “completely”) wrapped around or “taking in” MC (i.e. “host”, or Master of Ceremonies), like so: TO-(MC)-A-T.

  1. Feedback on beginning of play being broadcast (8)

Answer: REACTION (i.e. “feedback”). Solution is RE (i.e. “on” or regarding – think email replies) followed by ACT I (i.e. “beginning of play”) and ON (i.e. “being broadcast”).

  1. I feed such nice crumbles, being head cook (4,2,7)

Answer: CHEF DE CUISINE (i.e. “head cook”). “Crumbles” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of I FEED SUCH NICE. Another French reference, so…

  1. Boy king, one talking tediously about one’s schooling (7)

Answer: TUITION (i.e. “schooling”). Not 100% on this one, but for what it’s worth my solution is TUT (i.e. “boy king”, short for Tutankhamun), followed by I (i.e. “[Roman numeral] one”) and ON (i.e. “talking tediously”, as in going on an on about something). This is all then wrapped “about” I (i.e. “[Roman numeral] one” – again), like so: TU(I)T-I-ON. A bit naff, assuming I’ve got it right.

  1. Fly spicy food around south in frantic haste (5-6)

Answer: HURRY-SCURRY (i.e. “frantic haste”). Solution is HURRY (i.e. “fly”) followed by CURRY (i.e. “spicy food”) once all wrapped “around” S (a recognised abbreviation of “south”), like so: HURRY-(S)-CURRY.

  1. Oust inspector’s force on ship (10)

Answer: DISPOSSESS (i.e. “oust”). Solution is DI’S (i.e. “inspector’s”, specifically a Detective Inspector) followed by POSSE (i.e. a “force” of constables) and SS (i.e. “ship”, specifically a recognised abbreviation of a steamship).

  1. Allowed to continue, having misguidedly posted pun (9)

Answer: UNSTOPPED (i.e. “allowed to continue”). “Misguidedly” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of POSTED PUN.

  1. Old-fashioned occupation duke summarised (8)

Answer: OUTLINED (i.e. “summarised”). Solution is OUT (i.e. “old-fashioned”) followed by LINE (i.e. “occupation”) and D (a recognised abbreviation of “duke”).

  1. Dimly illuminated legal document briefly digested by singer (6)

Answer: TWILIT (i.e. “dimly illuminated”). Solution is WILL (i.e. “legal document”) with the last letter removed (indicated by “briefly”) and the remainder placed in or “digested by” TIT (i.e. “singer” or songbird), like so: T(WIL)IT.

  1. Farm animals are seen around most of his worker’s homes (8)

Answer: BEEHIVES (i.e. “worker’s homes”). Solution is BEEVES (i.e. “farm animals” – a new one on me, apparently after a plural of beef) wrapped “around” HI (i.e. “most of his”, i.e. the word HIS with the last letter removed), like so: BEE(HI)VES.

  1. Letter-carrier (man, we hear) represented in art (4,5)

Answer: MAIL TRAIN (i.e. “letter-carrier”). Solution is a homophone (indicated by “we hear”) of MALE (i.e. “man”) followed by an anagram (indicated by “represented”) of IN ART.

  1. Reckless general’s assistant enthralled by chart (6)

Answer: MADCAP (i.e. “reckless”). Solution is ADC (i.e. “general’s assistant”, specifically an Aide-De-Camp) placed in or “enthralled by” MAP (i.e. “chart”), like so: M(ADC)AP.

  1. Summons to vote, fixing pint while here (5-4,4)

Answer: THREE-LINE WHIP (i.e. “summons to vote”). “Fixing” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of PINT WHILE HERE.

  1. Female childminder talked of problem reversing mischief (11)

Answer: SHENANIGANS (i.e. “mischief”). Solution is SHE (i.e. “female”) followed by a homophone (indicated by “talked of”) of NANNY, then SNAG (i.e. “problem”) once “reversed”, like so: SHE-NANI-GANS.

  1. Most unrestricted widespread plant (11)

Answer: LOOSESTRIFE (i.e. “plant”). Solution is LOOSEST (i.e. “most unrestricted”) followed by RIFE (i.e. “widespread”).

  1. Frown at ratter regularly loose in dockyard area (10)

Answer: WATERFRONT (i.e. “dockyard area”). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “loose”) of FROWN AT and RTE (i.e. “ratter regularly”, i.e. every other letter of RATTER).

  1. Singer distributed ale brewed in outskirts of Rochester (4,7)

Answer: REED WARBLER (i.e. “singer”, another songbird). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “distributed”) of ALE BREWED placed “in” RR (i.e. “outskirts of Rochester”, i.e. the first and last letters of “Rochester”), like so: R(EEDWARBLE)R.

  1. Popular old pope’s description of stormy weather? (9)

Answer: INCLEMENT (i.e. “description of stormy weather”). Solution is IN (i.e. “trendy”) followed by CLEMENT (i.e. “old pope” – there’s been a few Clements to choose from).

  1. Evade argument, creating shrubby border round field (8)

Answer: HEDGEROW (i.e. “shrubby border round field”). Solution is HEDGE (i.e. “evade” or to be evasive in an argument) followed by ROW (i.e. “argument”).

  1. Outcry about affair involving Liberal leader (7)

Answer: CLAMOUR (i.e. “outcry”). Solution is C (i.e. “about”, specifically a recognised abbreviation of “circa”) and AMOUR (i.e. “affair”) all wrapped around or “involving” L (a recognised abbreviation of “Liberal”), like so: C-(L)-AMOUR.

  1. Governor at that time shielding a nonbeliever (7)

Answer: HEATHEN (i.e. “nonbeliever”). Solution is HE (i.e. “governor”, short for His Excellency if you go in for such bowing and scraping) and THEN (i.e. “at that time”) all wrapped around or “shielding” A, like so: HE-(A)-THEN.

  1. Picked up escaped bird of prey in Swiss canton (7)

Answer: LUCERNE (i.e. “Swiss canton”, and very nice it is too). Solution is a homophone (indicated by “picked up” of LOOSE (i.e. “escaped”) followed by ERNE (i.e. “bird of prey”).

  1. Asian writer turned boxer (6)

Answer: NEPALI (i.e. “Asian”). Solution is PEN (i.e. “writer”) reversed (indicated by “turned”) and followed by Muhammad ALI (i.e. “boxer”), like so: NEP-ALI.

  1. Equestrian equipment found outside entrance to rural path (5)

Answer: TRACK (i.e. “path”). Solution is TACK (i.e. “equestrian equipment”) wrapped around or “found outside” R (i.e. “entrance to rural”, i.e. the first letter of “rural”), like so: T(R)ACK.

Times Jumbo Cryptic Crossword 1573

Still catching up! Bank Holiday Monday’s Jumbo was a toughie, but again a good one with some cunning misdirection and steady albeit slower progression.

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

Thanks again for the kind words and input. It’s always interesting to hear the thoughts of other solvers once they’ve put down their pens. All being well, I’ll see you in a matter of minutes with the next one!

LP

Across clues

  1. Solicitor’s oil painting satisfies the sitter at last (9)

Answer: CANVASSER (i.e. “solicitor”). Solution is CANVAS (i.e. “oil painting”) followed by SER (i.e. “satisfies the sitter at last”, i.e. the last letters of “satisfies”, “the” and “sitter”).

  1. Dimwit in clutches of drink, a kneeler in church? (7)

Answer: HASSOCK (i.e. “a kneeler in church”, referring to the cushions that are knelt on). Solution is ASS (i.e. “dimwit”) placed “in clutches of” HOCK (i.e. “drink”), like so: H(ASS)OCK.

  1. Stared, adding a final letter to end of heading (5)

Answer: GAZED (i.e. “stared”). Solution is A and ZED (i.e. “final letter” of the alphabet) both placed “to the end” of G (i.e. “end of heading”, i.e. the last letter of “heading”), like so: G-(A-ZED).

  1. Officer caught in passage with body (5,8)

Answer: LANCE CORPORAL (i.e. “officer”). Solution is C (a recognised abbreviation of “caught” used in a number of ball games) placed “in” LANE (i.e. “passage”) and followed by CORPORAL (i.e. relating to the “body”), like so: LAN(C)E-CORPORAL.

  1. Mutt, for one is unhappy with basic food, we’re told (9)

Answer: CROSSBRED (i.e. descriptive of “mutt, for one”). Solution is CROSS (i.e. “unhappy”) followed by a homophone (indicated by “we’re told”) of BREAD, like so: CROSS-BRED.

  1. Decorator gets fluid for marking sports surface (3,4)

Answer: ICE RINK (i.e. “sports surface”). Solution is ICER (i.e. cake “decorator”) followed by INK (i.e. “fluid for marking”).

  1. Cover on press department’s IT equipment (7)

Answer: DESKTOP (i.e. “IT equipment”). Solution is TOP (i.e. “cover”) placed “on” or after DESK (i.e. “press department”), like so: DESK-TOP.

  1. Charge for retaining ship’s seniority on list (7)

Answer: KEELAGE (i.e. “charge for retaining ship”). Solution is AGE (i.e. “seniority”) placed “on” or after KEEL (i.e. to lean or “list”), like so: KEEL-AGE.

  1. Muse here, slipping my line back into stage work (5,7)

Answer: MOUNT OLYMPUS (i.e. “muse here”, classically speaking). Solution is MY and L (a recognised abbreviation of “line”) all reversed (indicated by “back”) and placed “into” MOUNT (i.e. to “stage”) and OPUS (i.e. “work”), like so: MOUNT-O(L-YM)PUS.

  1. Insists on one turning up with learner in USA (10)

Answer: STIPULATES (i.e. “insists on”). Solution is I (i.e. “[Roman numeral] one”), UP reversed (indicated by “turning”) and L (a recognised abbreviation of “learner”) all placed “in” STATES (i.e. “USA”), like so: ST(I-PU-L)ATES.

  1. Compound in cowboy film eschewed by banks (5)

Answer: ESTER (i.e. “compound”). Solution is WESTERN (i.e. “cowboy film”) with its first and last letters removed (indicated by “eschewed by banks”).

  1. All investments the responsibility of minister (9)

Answer: PORTFOLIO. Solution satisfies “all investments” and “the responsibility of [government] minister”.

  1. Sly deserter originally rooting for GI (7)

Answer: FURTIVE (i.e. “sly”). Solution is FUGITIVE (i.e. “deserter”) with the “GI” swapped “for” R (i.e. “originally rooting”, i.e. the first letter of “rooting”), like so: FU(GI)TIVE => FU(R)TIVE.

  1. Somewhat bent vicar on rule breaking (11)

Answer: CURVILINEAR (i.e. “somewhat bent”). “Breaking” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of VICAR ON RULE.

  1. Ignoring cheers, entertain cast hugging elderly actress (11)

Answer: TRAGEDIENNE (i.e. “actress”). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “cast”) of ENTERTAIN once the TA has been removed (indicated by “ignoring cheers”) wrapped around or “hugging” AGED (i.e. “elderly”), like so: TR(AGED)IENNE.

  1. Footer about right, with live commercials you can count on? (6,5)

Answer: PRAYER BEADS (i.e. “you can count on” these). Solution is PAYER (i.e. “footer”, or one who foots the bill) wrapped “about” R (a recognised abbreviation of “right”) and followed by BE (i.e. to “live”) and ADS (i.e. “commercials”, short for advertisements), like so: P(R)AYER-BE-ADS.

  1. Revised version of internet ode undertaken (7,4)

Answer: ENTERED INTO (i.e. “undertaken”). “Revised version of” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of INTERNET ODE.

  1. What might afflict company during flood? (7)

Answer: SCOURGE (i.e. “what might afflict”). Solution is CO (a recognised abbreviation of “company”) placed “during” SURGE (i.e. “flood”), like so: S(CO)URGE.

  1. Blue fashion in decline (9)

Answer: DOWNTREND (i.e. “decline”). Solution is DOWN (i.e. “blue”) followed by TREND (i.e. “fashion”).

  1. One doesn’t recall drinking here? (5)

Answer: LETHE. One for the classicists, this: “a river of the underworld causing forgetfulness in all who drank from it” (Chambers). It’s a neat clue, but if you have no interest in Greek mythology then you’re buggered. Needless to say, I had to look this one up.

  1. Forces chap to maintain island (10)

Answer: SERVICEMAN (i.e. “forces chap”). Solution is SERVICE (i.e. “to maintain”) followed by MAN (i.e. “island”, specifically the Isle of Man).

  1. Contraceptive taken after love to mitigate harsh treatment (5,3,4)

Answer: SUGAR THE PILL (i.e. “mitigate harsh treatment”). Solution is THE PILL (i.e. “contraceptive”) placed “after” SUGAR (i.e. “love”, both terms of endearment).

  1. Nearly all petrol with free charging is legal (7)

Answer: JURIDIC (i.e. relating to the administration of justice, or, more broadly, “legal”). Solution is JUICE (i.e. “petrol”) with its last letter removed (indicated by “nearly all”) and the remainder placed around or having RID (i.e. “free”) “charging” through it, like so: JU(RID)IC. Can’t say I was a fan of this one.

  1. Retired Tyneside councillor stopping people’s crime (7)

Answer: LARCENY (i.e. “crime”). Solution is NE (i.e. “Tyneside”, i.e. a recognised abbreviation of North-East) and CR (ditto “councillor”) all reversed (indicated by “retired”) and placed in or “stopping” LAY (i.e. “people”), like so: LA(RC-EN)Y.

  1. Mix of seaweed within a couple of miles (7)

Answer: AMALGAM (i.e. “mix”). Solution is ALGA (i.e. “seaweed”) placed “within” A and MM (i.e. “a couple of miles”, M being a recognised abbreviation of “mile”), like so: A-M(ALGA)M.

  1. Was recoiling after holding one’s own blade (6,3)

Answer: COPING SAW (i.e. “blade”). Solution is WAS reversed (indicated by “recoiling”) and placed “after” COPING (i.e. “holding one’s own”).

  1. Take off support for arm I waved (5,4,4)

Answer: SLING ONE’S HOOK (i.e. “take off”). Solution is SLING (i.e. “support for arm”) followed by ONE (i.e. “I”) and SHOOK (i.e. “waved”).

  1. Byes at any time reflected part of score (5)

Answer: BREVE (i.e. “part of [musical] score”). Solution is B (a recognised abbreviation of “byes” used in cricket – Chambers doesn’t explicitly back this up, but my Oxford and Collins Concise list it) followed by EVER (i.e. “at any time”) once reversed (indicated by “reflected”), like so: B-REVE.

  1. Indeed yearn to follow Democrat for twenty-four hours (7)

Answer: DAYLONG (i.e. “for twenty-four hours”). Solution is AY (i.e. “indeed”, short for always) and LONG (i.e. to “yearn”) all placed after or “following” D (a recognised abbreviation of “Democrat”), like so: D-(AY-LONG).

  1. Mounted contests here – and others in court (9)

Answer: BADMINTON. Solution satisfies “mounted contests here”, referring to Badminton Horse Trials – no, me neither – and “others in court”, referring to the sport of badminton.

Down clues

  1. Metal with almost all carbon I stored (7)

Answer: CALCIUM (i.e. “metal”). Solution is AL (i.e. “almost all”, i.e. the word “all” with its last letter removed), C (chemical symbol of “carbon”) and I all placed or “stored” in CUM (i.e. combined “with”), like so: C(AL-C-I)UM.

  1. Question jockeys in race upset, reaching illogical conclusion (3,8)

Answer: NON SEQUITUR (i.e. “illogical conclusion”). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “jockeys”) of QUESTION placed “in” RUN (i.e. “race”) when reversed (indicated by “upset” – this being a down clue), like so: N(ONSEQUIT)UR.

  1. Asian taking part in kamikaze ritual (5)

Answer: AZERI (i.e. “Asian”, specifically one from Azerbaijan). “Taking part in” indicates the solution has been hidden in the clue, like so: KAMIK(AZE RI)TUAL.

  1. Part of sub in Albanian currency returned and not included (7)

Answer: SNORKEL (i.e. “part of sub”). Solution is LEKS (i.e. “Albanian currency”) reversed (indicated by “returned”) and wrapped around or “including” NOR (i.e. “and not”), like so: S(NOR)KEL.

  1. Popular music standard going up (3)

Answer: RAP (i.e. “popular music”). Solution is PAR (i.e. “standard”) reversed (indicated by “going up” – this being a down clue).

  1. Set jam that’s available in bars (4,5)

Answer: HARD STUFF (i.e. liquor “that’s available in bars”). Solution is HARD (i.e. “set”) followed by STUFF (i.e. to “jam”).

  1. Determined to forget about what may be in the water? (6)

Answer: SOLUTE (i.e. “what may be in the water”). Solution is RESOLUTE (i.e. “determined”) with the RE removed (indicated by “to forget about” – RE being “about” or regarding, think email replies).

  1. Restorative policy of work mate, only one left accepting blame (12,7)

Answer: OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY (i.e. “restorative policy”). Solution is OCCUPATION (i.e. “of work”) followed by ALLY (i.e. “mate”) with one of the Ls removed (indicated by “only one left” – L being a recognised abbreviation of “left”) and the remainder wrapped around or “accepting” THE RAP (i.e. “blame”), like so: OCCUPATION-AL(THE-RAP)Y.

  1. Get in the club and prepare for game (5,2)

Answer: KNOCK UP. Solution informally satisfies “get in the club”, or to get pregnant, and “prepare for game” of tennis, apparently.

  1. Oriental game wizard, one spreading the word (9)

Answer: GOSPELLER (i.e. “one spreading the word”). Solution is GO (i.e. “oriental game”) followed by SPELLER (i.e. “wizard”).

  1. Duff razor is not a Parsee’s (11)

Answer: ZOROASTRIAN (i.e. “Parsee’s” – over to Chambers: “a descendant of the Zoroastrians who emigrated from Persia to India in the 8c”). “Duff” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of RAZOR IS NOT A.

  1. Duck’s subterfuge (5)

Answer: DODGE. Solution satisfies to “duck” and “subterfuge”.

  1. Maud’s friend arranged permit in colourful border region (8,3,8)

Answer: DUMFRIES AND GALLOWAY (i.e. “border region”). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “arranged”) of MAUD’S FRIEND followed by ALLOW (i.e. “permit”) once placed “in” GAY (i.e. “colourful”), like so: DUMFRIESAND-G(ALLOW)AY.

  1. Rotary motor showing strain, with inner rib broken (7)

Answer: TURBINE (i.e. “rotary motor”). Solution is TUNE (i.e. “strain” or piece of music) placed around or having “inner” an anagram (indicated by “broken”) of RIB, like so: TU(RBI)NE.

  1. Port worker’s first wife died in supermarket (9)

Answer: STEVEDORE (i.e. “port worker”). Solution is EVE (i.e. “first wife”, biblically speaking) and D (a recognised abbreviation of “died”) both placed “in” STORE (i.e. “supermarket”), like so: ST(EVE-D)ORE.

  1. Bishop flexible, like Sunday’s children? (6)

Answer: BLITHE (i.e. “like Sunday’s children”, the old nursery rhyme Monday’s Child closes with: “…and the child born on the sabbath day; is bonny and blithe, good and gay”. Not sure what happened with me, then!) Solution is B (a recognised abbreviation of “bishop” used in chess) followed by LITHE (i.e. “flexible”).

  1. Those who’d get away from opponents at table drink up in Queens, perhaps (9)

Answer: ESCAPISTS (i.e. “those who’d get away”). Solution is ES (i.e. “opponents at table”, specifically East and South, positions in a game of bridge) followed by SIP (i.e. “drink”) once reversed (indicated by “up” – this being a down clue) and placed “in” CATS (i.e. “queens, perhaps” – ignore the misleading capitalisation, we’re talking female cats here), like so ES-CA(PIS)TS.

  1. Elastic producer initially under obligation (7)

Answer: PLIABLE (i.e. “elastic”). Solution is P (i.e. “producer initially”, i.e. the first letter of “producer”) followed by or placed “under” – this being a down clue – LIABLE (i.e. “obligation”).

  1. Nuclear component it’s said not many will measure, historically (4,3)

Answer: FUEL ROD (i.e. “nuclear component”). Solution is a homophone (indicated by “it’s said”) of FEW’LL (i.e. “not many will”) followed by ROD (i.e. “measure, historically” – take your pick, Chambers offers: “a pole or perch (5½ yards or 16½ feet); a square pole (272¼ sq ft); (of brickwork) 272 sq ft of standard thickness of 1½ bricks or 306 cu ft”. None have a “historic” or archaic label, mind, not that I would have known either way).

  1. Engineers meeting second individual dispersed again (6)

Answer: RESOWN (i.e. “dispersed again”). Solution is RE (i.e. “engineers”, specifically the Royal Engineers of the British Army) followed by S (a recognised abbreviation of “second”) and OWN (i.e. “individual”).

  1. Spoil trendy borders of lining during fitting (7)

Answer: INDULGE (i.e. “spoil” or mollycoddle). Solution is IN (i.e. “trendy”) followed by LG (i.e. “borders of lining”, i.e. the first and last letters of “lining”) once placed in or “during” DUE (i.e. appropriate or “fitting”), like so: IN-DU(LG)E.

  1. Ego, what sustains us in morning routine when exhausted (5,6)

Answer: AMOUR PROPRE (i.e. “ego” or self-esteem). Solution is OUR PROP (i.e. “what sustains us”) placed “in” between AM (i.e. “morning”, short for the Latin ante meridiem) and RE (i.e. “routine when exhausted”, i.e. the word “routine” with all its middle letters removed), like so: AM-(OUR-PROP)-RE. One nailed from the wordplay, unsurprisingly. It’s French, too, so you know what that means…

  1. Love bird gets round duck, no problem (7,2,2)

Answer: NOTHING TO IT (i.e. “no problem”). Solution is NOTHING (i.e. “love”, a zero score in tennis) and TIT (i.e. “bird”) once wrapped “round” O (i.e. “duck”, in this case a zero score in cricket), like so: NOTHING-T(O)IT.

  1. Steps with purpose in and out, blocking people (4,5)

Answer: RAIN DANCE (i.e. “steps with purpose”). Solution is IN and an anagram (indicated by “out”) of AND all placed in or “blocking” RACE (i.e. “people”), like so: RA(IN-DAN)CE.

  1. Model eating nut increasingly tense (9)

Answer: TAUTENING (i.e. “increasingly tense”). “Model” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of EATING NUT.

  1. Relieved partner once damned runs away (7)

Answer: EXCUSED (i.e. “relieved”). Solution is EX (i.e. “partner once”) followed by CURSED (i.e. “damned”) once the R has been removed (indicated by “runs away” – R being a recognised abbreviation of “runs” used in a number of ball games), like so: EX-CUSED.

  1. Focussed, like those under instruction (7)

Answer: TRAINED. Solution satisfies “focussed”, as in eyes trained on a target, and “like those under instruction”.

  1. Mistakenly ban milk for young 45 down? (7)

Answer: LAMBKIN (i.e. “young 45 down” – the solution to 45d is JACOB, which can be a breed of sheep). “Mistakenly” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of BAN MILK.

  1. Rising man with master takes care of painting (6)

Answer: FRESCO (i.e. “painting”). Solution is SERF (i.e. “man with master”) reversed (indicated by “rising” – this being a down clue) and followed by C/O (short for “care of”), like so: FRES-C/O.

  1. Patriarch shot protecting firm (5)

Answer: JACOB (i.e. biblical “patriarch”). Solution is JAB (i.e. “shot” or injection) wrapped around or “protecting” CO (i.e. “firm”, short for company), like so: JA(CO)B.

  1. Very like sailor – not half (5)

Answer: ASSAI (i.e. “very” in musical lingo). Solution is AS (i.e. “like”) followed by SAI (i.e. “sailor – not half”, specifically the latter half).

  1. Trap in swamp after capsizing (3)

Answer: GOB (i.e. “trap”, both informal terms for the mouth). Solution is BOG (i.e. “swamp”) reversed (indicated by “after capsizing” – this being a down clue).

Times Jumbo Cryptic Crossword 1572

Catching up on some old Jumbos that were published while I was away. This was a medium strength offering and a pretty good one with a decent helping of well-worked clues and the kind of steady progression I like. Well, apart from 1a, which took me waaaay too long to twig.

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 gyp then you might find my Just For Fun page of use, where you’ll find links to solutions for hundreds of the things.

Thanks as always for the kind words and input. It’s always interesting to hear the thoughts of other solvers on these things. Right then, I’ll see you in a couple of minutes with the next one.

LP

Across clues

  1. Rockers maybe have parts to belt out (7)

Answer: SEATING (i.e. “rockers maybe” – other forms of seating are available). The rest of the clue seems to riff on the “belts” you find on car seats.

[EDIT: Thanks to Natalie in the comments for fleshing this one out. Turns out the solution comprises EAT (i.e. to “have”) once placed in or “parting” SING (i.e. “to belt out”), like so: S(EAT)ING. Thanks, Natalie! – LP]

  1. Biggest aphid possibly on fruit (8)

Answer: PLUMPEST (i.e. “biggest”). Solution is PEST (i.e. “aphid possibly” – other nuisances are available) placed “on” or after PLUM (i.e. “fruit”), like so: PLUM-PEST.

  1. First trace of this compound comprises carbon and silicate (6)

Answer: TALCUM (i.e. “silicate”). Solution is T (i.e. “first trace of this”, i.e. the first letter of “this”) followed by ALUM (i.e. “compound” of potassium and aluminium) once wrapped around or “comprising” C (chemical symbol of “carbon”), like so: T-AL(C)UM.

  1. Line – or lines – tracking said form of transport (11,5)

Answer: ARTICULATED LORRY (i.e. “transport”). Solution is L (a recognised abbreviation of “line”), OR and RY (i.e. “lines”, specifically a recognised abbreviation of a railway) all placed after or “tracking” ARTICULATED (i.e. “said”), like so: ARTICULATED-(L-OR-RY).

  1. Nap following a strong drink (6)

Answer: PERNOD (i.e. “strong drink”). Solution is NOD (i.e. “nap”, both referring to sleep) placed after or “following” PER (i.e. “a”, as in “three times a year”), like so: PER-NOD.

  1. Attack remake of extremely bad B-movie (4-4)

Answer: DIVE-BOMB (i.e. “attack”). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “remake”) of BD (i.e. “extremely bad”, i.e. the first and last letters of “bad”) and B-MOVIE.

  1. Big predator in Oregon and California (4)

Answer: ORCA (i.e. “big predator”). Solution comprises OR and CA, US state abbreviations of “Oregon” and “California”.

  1. Poverty seen to recede with the consumption of lunches? (9)

Answer: NEEDINESS (i.e. “poverty”). Solution is SEEN reversed (indicated by “to recede”) and wrapped around or “consuming” DINES (i.e. “lunches”), like so: NEE(DINES)S.

  1. Do something distinctive with beer bottles (5,3)

Answer: STAND OUT (i.e. “do something distinctive”). Solution is AND (i.e. “with”) placed in or “bottled” by STOUT (i.e. “beer”), like so: ST(AND)OUT.

  1. Boy or girl also, cheerful with time away from African port (11)

Answer: ALEXANDRIAN (i.e. “from African port”, specifically Alexandria in Egypt). Solution is ALEX (i.e. “boy or girl’s” name) followed by AND (i.e. “also”) then RIANT (i.e. “cheerful”, apparently a French term but one recognised by Chambers) once the T has been removed (indicated by “with time away” – T being a recognised abbreviation of “time”), like so: ALEX-AND-RIAN.

  1. Pictures in the centre are conserved by gallery’s chemicals (9)

Answer: TARTRATES (i.e. “chemicals”). Solution is ART (i.e. “pictures”) and R (i.e. “in the centre are”, i.e. the middle letter of “are”) both placed in or “conserved by” TATE’S (i.e. “gallery’s”), like so: T(ART-R)ATE’S.

  1. Cheat excessively called out instructions from the back (3-5)

Answer: TWO-TIMER (i.e. a “cheat”). Solution is a homophone (indicated by “called out”) of TOO (i.e. “excessively”) followed by REMIT (i.e. “instructions”) once reversed (indicated by “from the back”).

  1. Female, 18, somewhat taken aback (4)

Answer: ENID (i.e. “female’s” name). The solution to “18” across is NEEDINESS, in which the solution can be found once it has been reversed or “taken aback”, like so: NEE(DINE)SS.

  1. For health reasons, heated disputes are ugly (11)

Answer: PASTEURISED (i.e. “for health reasons, heated”). “Ugly” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of DISPUTES ARE.

  1. Plant found in delightful Italian region, say (5,6)

Answer: SWEET CICELY (i.e. “plant”). Solution is SWEET (i.e. “delightful”) followed by a homophone (indicated by “say”) of SICILY (i.e. “Italian region”).

  1. Bring in books to fill a library’s case, crucially (11)

Answer: IMPORTANTLY (i.e. “crucially”). Solution is IMPORT (i.e. “bring in”) followed by NT (i.e. “books”, specifically the New Testament of The Bible) once placed in or “filling” A and LY (i.e. “library’s case”, i.e. the first and last letter of “library”), like so: IMPORT-A-(NT)-LY.

  1. Contemplates ditching mass and running from a Christian group? (11)

Answer: PENTECOSTAL (i.e. “from a Christian group”). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “running”) of CONTEMPLATES once the M has been removed (indicated by “ditching mass” – M being a recognised abbreviation of “mass”).

  1. On one’s own and thus endlessly sad (4)

Answer: SOLO (i.e. “on one’s own”). Solution is SO (i.e. “thus”) followed by LOW (i.e. “sad”) once the last letter has been removed (indicated by “endlessly”), like so: SO-LO.

  1. Impressive, posh starters of rabbit excited several foodies (8)

Answer: EPICURES (i.e. “foodies”). Solution is EPIC (i.e. “impressive”) followed by U (i.e. “posh” – U is sometimes used as an abbreviation for the upper class) and RES (i.e. “starters of rabbit excited several”, i.e. the first letters of “rabbit”, “excited” and “several”).

  1. Single, rubbish pastry item rejected by a restaurant (9)

Answer: TRATTORIA (i.e. “restaurant”). Solution is I (i.e. “single”, or 1) followed by ROT (i.e. “rubbish”) and TART (i.e. “pastry item”) all reversed (indicated by “rejected”) and followed by A, like so: (TRAT-TOR-I)-A.

  1. Building up hospital crew with nurse in middle of surgery (11)

Answer: HEIGHTENING (i.e. “building up”). Solution is H (a recognised abbreviation of “hospital” used on maps) followed by EIGHT (i.e. sporting boat “crew”), then EN (i.e. “nurse”, specifically an Enrolled Nurse), then IN and G (i.e. “middle [letter] of surgery”).

  1. Issue facing staff and head of US organisation (5,3)

Answer: POINT MAN (i.e. “head of US organisation”, presumably in this case an army unit. Point men are those who head in first). Solution is POINT (i.e. “issue”) followed by MAN (i.e. to “staff” an organisation).

  1. Stuff you may have a good mind to eat? (9)

Answer: BRAINFOOD. Clue plays on BRAIN being another word for “mind”. You get the idea.

  1. Black cloth put over clothes (4)

Answer: GARB (i.e. “clothes”). Solution is B (a recognised abbreviation of “black”) used in chess and RAG (i.e. “cloth”) all reversed (indicated by “put over”), like so: GAR-B.

  1. Sportswear that’s easy to slip on? (3,5)

Answer: ICE SKATE (i.e. “sportswear”). Clue plays on how one can “slip on” an ice skate. You get the idea.

  1. Cops having work cut out containing rebel troubles (6)

Answer: CRISES (i.e. “troubles”). Solution is CS (i.e. “cops having work cut out”, i.e. the word COPS with the OP removed – OP is a recognised abbreviation of “opus”, a creative work) wrapped around or “containing” RISE (i.e. to “rebel”), like so: C(RISE)S.

  1. Clinic with secret room designed for small tech components (16)

Answer: MICROELECTRONICS (i.e. “small tech components”). “Designed” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of CLINIC and SECRET ROOM.

  1. Type of coal initially failing to catch fire (6)

Answer: IGNITE (i.e. “to catch fire”). Solution is LIGNITE (i.e. “type of coal”) with the first letter removed (indicated by “initially failing”).

  1. Element in any way reduced from a recent delivery (8)

Answer: NEONATAL (i.e. “from a recent delivery”, relating to newborns). Solution is NEON (i.e. chemical “element”) followed by AT ALL (i.e. “in any way”) once its last letter has been removed (indicated by “reduced”), like so: NEON-AT-AL.

  1. Shape of game piece given to players (3-4)

Answer: DIE-CAST (i.e. to “shape”). Solution is DIE (i.e. “game piece”) followed by CAST (i.e. theatrical “players”).

Down clues

  1. Low alcohol product is ultimately useful (6)

Answer: SHANDY (i.e. “low alcohol product”). Solution is S (i.e. “is ultimately”, i.e. the last letter of “is”) followed by HANDY (i.e. “useful”).

  1. Brisk, later part of play gets tiresome at the end (6)

Answer: ACTIVE (i.e. “brisk”). Solution is ACT IV (i.e. “later part of play”) followed by E (i.e. “tiresome at the end”, i.e. the last letter of “tiresome”).

  1. It helps new businesses in Communist state to run (9)

Answer: INCUBATOR (i.e. “it helps new businesses”). Solution is IN followed by CUBA (i.e. “Communist state”), then TO and R (a recognised abbreviation of “run” used in several ball games).

  1. Lizard runs after mate, losing ground (4,7)

Answer: GILA MONSTER (i.e. “lizard”). Solution is R (i.e. “runs”, same as above) placed “after” an anagram (indicated by “ground”) of MATE LOSING, like so: GILAMONSTE-R.

  1. Stone with hard innermost part (4)

Answer: PITH (i.e. “innermost part”). Solution is PIT (i.e. fruit “stone”) followed by H (a recognised abbreviation of “hard” used in grading pencils).

  1. Subtle fact hidden by subordinate journalist (11)

Answer: UNDERSTATED (i.e. “subtle”). Solution is STAT (i.e. “fact”, short for statistic) placed in between or “hidden by” UNDER (i.e. “subordinate”) and ED (i.e. “journalist”, short for editor), like so: UNDER-(STAT)-ED.

  1. Breeders stay close to iguana and other reptiles (11)

Answer: PROPAGATORS (i.e. “breeders”). Solution is PROP (i.e. “stay” or support) followed by A (i.e. “close to iguana”, i.e. the last letter of “iguana”) and GATORS (i.e. “other reptiles”, short for alligators).

  1. Untroubled by time, I take in grand World Heritage site (9)

Answer: SERENGETI (i.e. “World Heritage site”). Solution is SERENE (i.e. “untroubled”), T (a recognised abbreviation of “time”) and I all wrapped around or “taking in” G (a recognised abbreviation of “grand”), like so: SEREN(G)E-T-I.

  1. Indigenous people’s minds are extraordinary (8)

Answer: AMERINDS (i.e. “indigenous people”). “Extraordinary” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of MINDS ARE.

  1. Shop where people go to rummage on vacation (11,5)

Answer: CONVENIENCE STORE (i.e. “shop”). Solution is CONVENIENCES (i.e. “where people go”, i.e. toilets) followed by TO and RE (i.e. “rummage on vacation”, i.e. the word “rummage” with all its middle letters removed).

  1. Very enthusiastic boy claiming second part of kid’s bike race (7)

Answer: MADISON (i.e. “bike race”). Solution is MAD (i.e. “very enthusiastic”) and SON (i.e. “boy”) all wrapped around or “claiming” I (i.e. “second part of kid”, i.e. the second letter of “kid”), like so: MAD-(I)-SON.

  1. Overheard club give evidence in trial (4,4)

Answer: BETA TEST (i.e. “trial”). “Overheard” indicates homophone. Solution comprises homophones of BEAT (i.e. to “club”) and ATTEST (i.e. “give evidence”).

  1. Home Office employs computers, etc to watch over property (5-3)

Answer: HOUSE-SIT (i.e. “watch over property”). Solution is HO (short for “Home Office”) followed by USES (i.e. “employs”) and IT (i.e. “computers, etc”, or Information Technology).

  1. They contract various typists to collect conveyances at first (8)

Answer: STYPTICS (i.e. “they contract” or draw together). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “various”) of TYPISTS wrapped around or “collecting” C (i.e. “conveyances at first”, i.e. the first letter of “conveyances”), like so: STYPTI(C)S. A new one on me.

  1. Busy solicitors plan on transfer of workers? (5-11)

Answer: CROSS-POLLINATION (i.e. “transfer of workers”, hinting at worker bees). “Busy” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of SOLICITORS PLAN ON.

  1. Not drinking, drug-free and rid of spots? (3-5)

Answer: DRY-CLEAN (i.e. “rid of spots”). Solution is DRY (i.e. “not drinking”) followed by CLEAN (i.e. “drug-free”, said of recovering addicts).

  1. Attempt to grasp Inland Revenue payment system (4)

Answer: GIRO (i.e. “payment system”). Solution is GO (i.e. “attempt”) wrapped around or “grasping” IR (short for “Inland Revenue”), like so: G(IR)O.

  1. Regularly set a trend and make money (4)

Answer: EARN (i.e. “make money”). “Regularly” indicates the solution can be derived by taking every other letter of SET A TREND.

  1. A genius from Germany, or a mug from there (8)

Answer: Albert EINSTEIN (i.e. “a genius from Germany”). When written as EIN STEIN the solution also satisfies “a mug from there”, i.e. the German for “a drinking vessel”.

  1. Small computer program supported by a physicist (8)

Answer: Edward Victor APPLETON (i.e. “physicist”). Solution is APPLET (i.e. “small computer program”) followed by ON (i.e. propped up or “supported by”).

  1. Pioneering traveller – a guy raring to go wild around India (4,7)

Answer: YURI GAGARIN (i.e. “pioneering traveller”). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “to go wild”) of A GUY RARING wrapped “around” I (“India” in the phonetic alphabet), like so: YUR(I)GAGARIN.

  1. Meat pie – mostly excellent – had crumbled, for example (4,7)

Answer: PAST PERFECT (i.e. “had crumbled, for example” – in the dry and joyless world of grammar, perfect is “a tense signifying action completed in the past (e.g. I have said) or at the time spoken of (as in the past perfect), e.g. I had said, and the future perfect e.g. I shall have left by then” (Chambers)). Solution is PAST (i.e. “meat pie – mostly”, i.e. the word PASTY with the last letter removed) followed by PERFECT (i.e. “excellent”).

  1. Happy to accept a punishment, mainly with resilience (11)

Answer: ELASTICATED (i.e. “with resilience”). Solution is ELATED (i.e. “happy”) wrapped around or “accepting” A STICK (i.e. “punishment”) once its last letter has been removed (indicated by “mainly”), like so: EL(A-STIC)ATED.

  1. Innocent Democrat embraced by cool old president (9)

Answer: CHILDLIKE (i.e. “innocent”). Solution is D (a recognised abbreviation of “Democrat”) placed in or “embraced by” CHILL (i.e. “cool”) and followed by IKE (i.e. “old president”, nickname of Dwight D. Eisenhauer), like so: CHIL(D)L-IKE.

  1. So, parents contrived to change (9)

Answer: TRANSPOSE (i.e. “to change”). “Contrived” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of SO PARENTS.

  1. Most counterfeit rings tend primarily to contain tin in the centre (8)

Answer: PHONIEST (i.e. “most counterfeit”). Solution is PHONES (i.e. “rings”) and T (i.e. “tend primarily”, i.e. the first letter of “tend”) all wrapped around or “containing” I (i.e. “tin in the centre”, i.e. the middle letter of “tin”), like so: PHON(I)ES-T.

  1. Welcomes eating certain pork, but not on a barbecue (7)

Answer: HIBACHI (i.e. “barbecue” – no, me neither). Solution is HI and HI (i.e. both “welcomes”) wrapped around or “eating” BACON (i.e. “certain pork”) once the ON has been removed (indicated by “but not on”), like so: HI-(BAC)-HI.

  1. Pretentious youth starts to ignore dad’s advice (2-2-2)

Answer: LA-DI-DA (i.e. “pretentious”). Solution is LAD (i.e. “youth”) followed by IDA (i.e. “starts to ignore dad’s advice”, i.e. the first letters of “ignore”, “dad’s” and “advice”).

  1. Service facility occupying empty tenement (3,3)

Answer: TEA SET (i.e. “service”). Solution is EASE (i.e. “facility”) placed in or “occupying” TT (i.e. “empty tenement”, i.e. the word “tenement” with all its middle letters removed), like so: T(EASE)T.

  1. Soft wood is the reason for some shaking? (4)

Answer: DEAL (i.e. “soft wood”). Solution also playfully satisfies “the reason for some shaking”, referring to handshakes symbolically sealing deals.

Times Jumbo Cryptic Crossword 1571

A medium strength puzzle this week and a decent one to boot. There were a few clues that I had to pinch my nose for, but overall the clueing and the steady progression made for one of the better Jumbos.

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 slip then you might find succour in my Just For Fun page, where you’ll find links to solutions for hundreds of the things.

Thanks for the kind words and input. It’s always interesting to hear the thoughts and opinions of other solvers once they’ve set down their pens. I’ll be away from my keyboard next weekend so will probably be a few days late in posting the next one. Till I return, stay safe out there kids.

LP

FBV (French-By-Volume): 3.3%

Across clues

  1. Man United stew about a possible pen? (4,4)

Answer: MUTE SWAN (i.e. “a possible pen” – a pen is a female swan. The mute swan, meanwhile, is another name for the common swan. So a swan, then). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “about”) of MAN, U (a recognised abbreviation of “united”) and STEW.

  1. Way a long tooth cut finds place (6)

Answer: STATUS (i.e. “place”). Solution is ST (i.e. “way”, specifically a recognised abbreviation of “street”) followed by A and TUSK (i.e. “long tooth”) once its last letter has been removed (indicated by “cut”), like so: ST-A-TUS.

  1. Resident scholar Ginger knocked over by wild pig (7)

Answer: BOARDER (i.e. “resident scholar”). Solution is RED (i.e. “ginger” – ignore the misleading capitalisation) reversed (indicated by “knocked over”) and placed “by” or after BOAR (i.e. “wild pig”), like so: BOAR-DER.

  1. Sails across ocean and far away? Hardly (5,2,4)

Answer: CLOSE AT HAND (i.e. “far away? Hardly”). Solution is CLOTH (i.e. “sails”) wrapped around or “across” SEA (i.e. “ocean”) and followed by AND, like so: CLO(SEA)TH-AND.

  1. Corrupt senate has excellent backing that puts one out (11)

Answer: ANAESTHESIA (i.e. “that puts one out”). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “corrupt”) of SENATE HAS followed by AI (i.e. “excellent”, i.e. A1 using its Roman numeral equivalent – a common piece of wordplay used by setters) once reversed (indicated by “backing”), like so: ANAESTHES-IA.

  1. Genesis performing selected songs? (5)

Answer: ONSET (i.e. “genesis” or beginning). Solution is ON (i.e. “performing”) followed by SET (i.e. “selected songs”). Nicely worked.

  1. Bishop presses son to become writer (7)

Answer: Anthony BURGESS (i.e. “writer”). Solution is B (a recognised abbreviation of “bishop” used in chess) followed by URGES (i.e. “presses”) and S (a recognised abbreviation of “son”).

  1. Doctors set out at night to cover area (9)

Answer: DENATURES (i.e. “doctors”). Solution is DENTURES (i.e. “set out at night”, as in how you’d probably not kip with them in) wrapped around or “covering” A (a recognised abbreviation of “area”), like so: DEN(A)TURES.

  1. Such a fish as sinks beneath the waves? (7)

Answer: TORPEDO. Solution satisfies a variety of “fish” also known as an electric ray, and “as sinks beneath the waves”, referring to the weapon used to sink ships.

  1. Up north, pastiche irritated primitive sort (15)

Answer: PITHECANTHROPUS (i.e. “primitive sort”, referring to “a fossil hominid discovered by Dutch palaeontologist Dr Eugene Dubois in Java in 1891-2” (Chambers)). “Irritated” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of UP NORTH PASTICHE. Wordplay was obvious but this took a few intersecting letters before I was able to brute-force my Chambers, because, let’s be honest, this isn’t exactly an everyday term is it? If this was the first clue you put into the grid then bully for you, but for the rest of us who didn’t take GCSE Anthropogeny I stand by my previous gripes about obscure general knowledge crap getting uselessly clued up as anagrams. Still, at least this wasn’t stuck in the grid to fill an awkward space!

  1. Journeys to the bar and back? (5,5)

Answer: ROUND TRIPS (i.e. “journeys to…and back”). Clue plays on people buying ROUNDS of drinks at a “bar”. You get the idea.

  1. Commercial rubbish about one being skilled (6)

Answer: ADROIT (i.e. “skilled”). Solution is AD (i.e. “commercial”, short for advertisement) followed by ROT (i.e. “rubbish”) once wrapped “about” I (i.e. “[Roman numeral] one”), like so: AD-RO(I)T.

  1. Shorten extract from poet: Rimbaud (4)

Answer: TRIM (i.e. “shorten”). “Extract from” indicates the solution has been hidden in the clue, like so: POE(T RIM)BAUD.

  1. Hopping mad, presumably? (3,1,5,5)

Answer: NOT A HAPPY BUNNY. Solution satisfies the clue as a whole, but also plays on how BUNNIES “hop”. A genuinely witty clue that had me chuckling when I twigged it.

  1. Singular craft needed to produce epigram? (3-5)

Answer: ONE-LINER (i.e. “epigram” or short poem – one-liner might be pushing it, mind!) Solution is ONE (i.e. “singular”) followed by LINER (i.e. “craft” or sea vessel).

  1. Plant pots not carelessly buried (8)

Answer: ENTOMBED (i.e. “buried”). Solution is EMBED (i.e. “plant”) wrapped around or “potting” an anagram (indicated by “carelessly”) of NOT, like so: E(NTO)MBED.

  1. Man’s expert knowledge about artist in border region (6-8)

Answer: ALSACE-LORRAINE (i.e. former “border region” formed by the German empire and reverted back to French ownership after WWI). Solution is AL’S (i.e. “man’s”, basically a man’s name made possessive) followed by ACE (i.e. “expert”) and LORE (i.e. “knowledge”) once wrapped “about” RA (i.e. “artist”, specifically a Royal Academician) and IN, like so: AL’S-ACE-LOR(RA-IN)E.

  1. Pub needs introduction to drummer and rhymer (4)

Answer: BARD (i.e. “rhymer”). Solution is BAR (i.e. “pub”) followed by D (i.e. “introduction to drummer”, i.e. the first letter of “drummer”).

  1. Unpleasant smell in small ditch rook must escape (6)

Answer: STENCH (i.e. “unpleasant smell”). Solution is S (a recognised abbreviation of “small”) followed by TRENCH (i.e. “ditch”) once the R has been removed (indicated by “rook must escape” – R being a recognised abbreviation of “rook” used in chess), like so: S-TENCH.

  1. What might be asset with mice spreading – answer welcomed? (7,3)

Answer: SIAMESE CAT. Solution satisfies the clue as a whole, but is also an anagram (indicated by “spreading”) of ASSET, MICE and A (a recognised abbreviation of “answer”, as in Q&A).

  1. Stage at which drinkers may drink no more? (10,5)

Answer: SATURATION POINT. A relatively straightforward clue and solution.

  1. Candidate turning on explosive energy (7)

Answer: NOMINEE (i.e. “candidate”). Solution is ON reversed (indicated by “turning”) and followed by MINE (i.e. “explosive”) and E (a recognised abbreviation of “energy”), like so: NO-MINE-E.

  1. Weller? He needs to change to receive greeting (9)

Answer: HEALTHIER (i.e. “weller” – the question mark is an indicator the setter is being a bit loose). Solution is HE followed by ALTER (i.e. “to change”) once wrapped around or “receiving” HI (i.e. “greeting”), like so: HE-ALT(HI)ER. What a naff clue!

  1. Recover from failed miracle (7)

Answer: RECLAIM (i.e. “recover”). “Failed” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of MIRACLE.

  1. Weapon brought back before court causes bleed (5)

Answer: EXACT (i.e. “bleed”, both meaning to extort money). Solution is AXE (i.e. “weapon”) reversed (indicated by “brought back”) and followed by CT (a recognised abbreviation of “court”), like so: EXA-CT.

  1. John, Scots engineer holding monarch to his breast? (5,6)

Answer: WATER CLOSET (i.e. “john”, slang for toilet). Solution is James WATT (i.e. “Scots engineer”) wrapped around or “holding” ER (i.e. “monarch”, specifically Elizabeth Regina) and CLOSE (i.e. “holding…to his breast”), like so: WAT(ER-CLOSE)T.

  1. Pope’s defender penning short quote about Keats scholar? (11)

Answer: ROMANTICIST (i.e. “Keats scholar”). Solution is ROMANIST (i.e. “Pope’s defender” or Roman Catholic) wrapped around or “penning” CITE (i.e. “quote”) once its last letter has been removed (indicated by “short”) and the remainder reversed (indicated by “about”), like so: ROMAN(TIC)IST.

  1. Hardly active, Mike enters rave after party (7)

Answer: DORMANT (i.e. “hardly active”). Solution is M (“Mike” in the phonetic alphabet) placed in or “entering” RANT (i.e. “rave”). This is all then placed “after” DO (i.e. “party”), like so: DO-R(M)ANT.

  1. Duke and daughter to occupy Manchester town land (6)

Answer: SADDLE (i.e. “land”, as in to burden or encumber another). Solution is D (a recognised abbreviation of “duke”) and D (ditto “daughter”) both placed in or “occupying” SALE (i.e. “Manchester town”), like so: SA(D-D)LE.

  1. Top class batsman’s first to leave, and drive away (8)

Answer: ESTRANGE (i.e. to “drive away”). Solution is BEST (i.e. “top”) and RANGE (i.e. “class”) with the B removed (indicated by “batsman’s first to leave”, i.e. the first letter of “batsman”), like so: EST-RANGE.

Down clues

  1. Skilled solver’s brother in Scots farmland the writer owns? (7)

Answer: MYCROFT (i.e. “skilled solver’s brother”, i.e. Mycroft Holmes, brother of Sherlock Holmes). When written as MY CROFT the solution also satisfies “Scots farmland the writer owns” from the point of view of the setter.

  1. Steal hearts perhaps in such attire? (7,4)

Answer: TROUSER SUIT (i.e. “attire”). Solution is TROUSER (i.e. “steal”) followed by SUIT (i.e. “hearts perhaps”, other playing card suits are available). Nicely worked.

  1. Extremist eviscerated on Highland peak in hut? There’s a hitch (5,4)

Answer: SHEET BEND (i.e. “a hitch” – over to Chambers: “a type of knot used especially for joining ropes of different sizes”. A new one on me, but not one I fancy remembering). Solution is ET (i.e. “extremist eviscerated”, i.e. the word “extremist” with all its middle letters removed) and BEN (i.e. “Highland peak”) both placed “in” SHED (i.e. “hut”), like so: SHE(ET-BEN)D.

  1. Disturbed, our phobias great, we lay down our lives for others (15)

Answer: AUTOBIOGRAPHERS (i.e. “we lay down our lives for others” – nice misdirection). “Disturbed” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of OUR PHOBIAS GREAT.

  1. Prime Minister gone to shake out hay on moorland (3,5)

Answer: TED HEATH (i.e. “Prime Minister” 1970-74). Solution is TED (i.e. “to shake out hay” for drying – another new one on me) followed by HEATH (i.e. “moorland”).

  1. Mystical Pole in dream has any number of teeth (14)

Answer: TRANSCENDENTAL (i.e. “mystical”). Solution is S (i.e. “pole” – ignore the misleading capitalisation, this is a recognised abbreviation of “south”) placed “in” TRANCE (i.e. “dream”) and followed by N (i.e. “any number”, mathematically speaking) and DENTAL (i.e. “of teeth”), like so: TRAN(S)CE-N-DENTAL.

  1. Photograph intimidating woman, one encountered in bed (10)

Answer: SNAPDRAGON (i.e. “one encountered in [flower] bed”). Solution is SNAP (i.e. “photograph”) followed by DRAGON (i.e. “intimidating woman”).

  1. Helmet has function opener perhaps admits (7)

Answer: BASINET (i.e. a kind of “helmet”). Solution is SIN (i.e. trigonometrical “function”, short for sine) placed in or “admitted” by BAIT (i.e. “opener perhaps”, if you’re a fish I guess), like so: BA(SIN)ET.

[EDIT: As a number of commenters have stated, the more likely solution to this one is SINE (i.e. “function”) being placed in BAT (i.e. “opener perhaps” – it seems BAT on its own can mean batsman. Cricket’s weird), like so: BA(SINE)T. Thanks, all! – LP]

  1. Maybe drawing around leader of Hindus – a Buddhist monk (5)

Answer: ARHAT (i.e. “Buddhist monk”. Not something recognised by my Chambers, Collins Concise or Bradford’s. Oxford lists it but suggests it’s a saint or someone holiest-of-the-holy. Would a monk qualify? Who cares, it’s religion either way so let’s move on quickly). Solution is ART (i.e. “maybe drawing” – other art forms are available) wrapped “around” H (i.e. “leader of Hindus”, i.e. the first letter of “Hindus”) and A, like so: AR(H-A)T.

  1. Eastern hand one detected in academic account (11)

Answer: DESCRIPTION (i.e. “account”). Solution is E (a recognised abbreviation of “eastern”), SCRIPT (i.e. “hand” or writing) and I (i.e. “[Roman numeral] one”) all placed “in” DON (i.e. “academic”), like so: D(E-SCRIPT-I)ON.

  1. Blockheads among others curtailed check again (8)

Answer: REASSESS (i.e. “check again”). Solution is ASSES (i.e. “blockheads”) placed “among” REST (i.e. “others”) once its last letter has been removed (indicated by “curtailed”), like so: RE(ASSES)S.

  1. Fine horse lost to Barnet’s travelling show? (4)

Answer: FAIR (i.e. “travelling show”). Solution is F (a recognised abbreviation of “fine” used in grading pencils) followed by HAIR (i.e. “Barnet”, after the cockney rhyming slang Barnet Fair, itself from a once-famous horse fair held there) once the H (i.e. “horse”, both slang names for heroin) has been removed (indicated by “lost”), like so: F-AIR.

  1. Tropical fruit old man consumes always (6)

Answer: PAPAYA (i.e. “tropical fruit”). Solution is PAPA (i.e. “old man” or father) wrapped around or “consuming” AY (i.e. shortened form of aye, or “always”), like so: PAP(AY)A.

  1. Venomous American upset Republican (7)

Answer: RATTLER (i.e. “venomous American”, short for rattlesnake). Solution is RATTLE (i.e. “upset”) followed by R (a recognised abbreviation of “Republican”).

  1. Some player in Germany who knows the ropes? (6)

Answer: RINGER (i.e. “who knows the ropes”, a playful reference to bell-ringers). “Some” indicates the solution has been hidden in the clue, like so: PLAYE(R IN GER)MANY.

  1. Soldiers under charge detained in camp in holy orders (3,12)

Answer: TEN COMMANDMENTS (i.e. “holy orders”). Solution is MEN (i.e. “soldiers”) placed after or “under” – this being a down clue – COMMAND (i.e. “charge”). This is all then placed “in” TENTS (i.e. “camp”), like so: TEN(COMMAND-MEN)TS.

  1. Charitable and well-known ghost writer-in-chief? (6-8)

Answer: PUBLIC-SPIRITED (i.e. “charitable”). Solution is PUBLIC (i.e. “well-known”) followed by SPIRIT (i.e. “ghost”) and ED (i.e. “writer-in-chief”, short for editor).

  1. Forest with walnut finally burning (6)

Answer: ARDENT (i.e. “burning”). Solution is ARDEN (i.e. “forest”, a reference to an area in Warwickshire that was once heavily wooded, apparently) followed by T (i.e. “walnut finally”, i.e. the last letter of “walnut”).

  1. Cigar box cast from rhodium (7)

Answer: HUMIDOR (i.e. “cigar box”). “Cast from” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of RHODIUM. Nicely worked.

  1. Singular to be so politically incorrect? (6)

Answer: SEXIST (i.e. “politically incorrect”). Solution is S (a recognised abbreviation of “singular”) followed by EXIST (i.e. “to be”).

  1. Good health professional warm and adept? (11)

Answer: TOASTMASTER (i.e. “good health professional”, a play on the words such a person would say). Solution is TOAST (i.e. to “warm”) and MASTER (i.e. “adept”).

  1. Old Peruvian people accepting time for magical words (11)

Answer: INCANTATION (i.e. “magical words”). Solution is INCA (i.e. “old Peruvian”) and NATION (i.e. “people”) all wrapped around or “accepting” T (a recognised abbreviation of “time”), like so: INCA-N(T)ATION.

  1. Some wines laid down in this pleasant situation? (3,2,5)

Answer: BED OF ROSES (i.e. “pleasant situation”). Clue plays on ROSÉ being a variety of “wine” and how one “lays” in a BED. You get the idea.

  1. French banker runs to embrace porky waiter (9)

Answer: SOMMELIER (i.e. wine “waiter”). Solution is SOMME (i.e. “French banker”, specifically a river in northern France) and R (a recognised abbreviation of “runs” used in a number of ball games) all wrapped around or “embracing” LIE (i.e. “porky”, after the cockney rhyming slang, pork pie), like so: SOMME-(LIE)-R.

  1. Avoided middle in test ground (8)

Answer: ESCHEWED (i.e. “avoided”). Solution is ES (i.e. “middle in test”, i.e. the middle letters of “test”) followed by CHEWED (i.e. “ground”).

  1. Gut sear with evil twists (8)

Answer: VISCERAL (i.e. “gut”, in this case probably relating to instinct or intuition). “Twists” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of SEAR and EVIL.

  1. Hallucination allowed in some rhyming verses (7)

Answer: TRIPLET (i.e. “some rhyming verses”). Solution is TRIP (i.e. “hallucination”) followed by LET (i.e. “allowed”).

  1. Diminutive singer in Henley’s content to show style (7)

Answer: ENTITLE (i.e. to “style”, not usage I can immediately put in a sentence, but it’s backed up by my Chambers). Solution is TIT (i.e. “diminutive singer” or songbird) placed “in” ENLE (i.e. “Henley’s content”, i.e. all the middle letters of Henley), like so: EN(TIT)LE.

  1. Legally land chelonian reptile missing leg (5)

Answer: TERRA (i.e. “legally land”, i.e. the Latin for “land” often used in legalese). Solution is TERRAPIN (i.e. “chelonian reptile”) with the PIN removed (indicated by “missing leg”, PIN being a slang word for one).

  1. Month in service that’s perfect culminating point (4)

Answer: ACME (i.e. “culminating point”). Solution is M (a recognised abbreviation of “month”) placed “in” ACE (i.e. “service that’s perfect”), like so: AC(M)E.

Times Jumbo Cryptic Crossword 1570

A medium strength puzzle and one that left a bad taste by the end. I doubt I’ll be on the setter’s Christmas card list by the end of this post, but good grief there was some trash to contend with here. Only Graham Poll (no relation) could have kept the setter on the pitch this week.

If you can cope with another grumpathon, you can find my completed grid below along with explanations of my solutions where I have them. I hope you find them useful. If a recent Jumbo has, oh, I don’t know, done something naughty, it’s getting late again dammit, then you might find solace in my Just For Fun page, where you’ll find links to solutions for hundreds of the things.

Thanks for the kind words and input. It’s always interesting to hear the thoughts of other solvers once they’ve set down their pens, even if it does sometimes take me ages to respond. (Sorry about that.) Till next time, stay cool out there, kids.

LP

FBV (French-By-Volume): 1.7%

Across clues

  1. They dread running dry (9)

Answer: DEHYDRATE (i.e. to “dry”. Rather apt at the moment). “Running” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of THEY DREAD. Nicely worked, credit where it’s due.

  1. Type of spring (5)

Answer: FOUNT. Solution satisfies a “type[face]” – Chambers would suggest font is a variant spelling of fount and not the other way around. Interesting… – and a “spring” of water.

  1. Plant is high around noon (7)

Answer: INSTALL (i.e. to set in place or “plant”). Solution is IS and TALL (i.e. “high”) all wrapped “around” N (a recognised abbreviation of “noon”), like so: I(N)S-TALL.

  1. What determines fate of king beginning to ask about power (5)

Answer: KARMA (i.e. “what determines fate”). Solution is K (a recognised abbreviation of “king” used in chess) and A (i.e. “beginning to ask”, i.e. the first letter of “ask”) all wrapped “about” ARM (i.e. “power”, figuratively speaking), like so: K-(ARM)-A.

  1. Military commander one’s surprised in castle courtyard (7)

Answer: WARLORD (i.e. “military commander”). Solution is LOR’ (i.e. “one’s surprised”, i.e. an exclamatory word, in this case a contraction of LORD) placed “in” WARD (i.e. “castle courtyard”, though technically this can be any guarded place), like so: WAR(LOR’)D.

  1. What might indicate it to be a poor area (5,4)

Answer: INNER CITY (i.e. “poor area”). Solution also cryptically satisfies “what might indicate it”, i.e. how “it” forms the INNER part of the word CITY.

  1. Consultants have money cut as outside roster (11)

Answer: SPECIALISTS (i.e. “consultants”). Solution is SPECIE (i.e. coined “money”, from the Latin) with the last letter removed (indicated by “cut”) and the remainder followed by AS once it has been placed “outside” of LIST (i.e. “roster”), like so: SPECI-A(LIST)S.

  1. I target urge desperately to bring matter up again (11)

Answer: REGURGITATE (i.e. “bring matter up again”). “Desperately” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of I TARGET URGE.

  1. Doctor takes side of blade to explore deeper? (6)

Answer: DREDGE (i.e. “to explore deeper”). Solution is DR (a recognised abbreviation of “doctor”) followed by EDGE (i.e. “side of blade”).

  1. Pill taken before operation here in theatre? (8)

Answer: TABLETOP (i.e. “here in theatre” – basically the top of an operating table. Much too vague for me. There was genuinely a feeling of “ugh, is that really the answer?!” when I twigged it). Solution is TABLET (i.e. “pill”) followed by OP (short for operation).

  1. Medical officer leads because of the possibility of assault (6)

Answer: MOLEST (i.e. “assault”). Solution is MO (a recognised abbreviation of “medical officer”) followed by or “leading” LEST (i.e. “because of the possibility of” – is it really though? Chambers would suggest: “so that not” or “for fear that”. Even if I squint my eyes really hard, I’m not seeing much overlap there).

  1. Catching girl leaving – not good – earlier (8)

Answer: LASSOING (i.e. “catching”). Solution is LASS GOING (i.e. “girl leaving”) with the first G removed (indicated by “not good – earlier” – G being a recognised abbreviation of “good”), like so: LASS-OING.

  1. Run round southeast in rugged old hunting land, a foolish pursuit (4-5,5)

Answer: WILD-GOOSE CHASE (i.e. “foolish pursuit”). Solution is GO (i.e. “run”), O (i.e. “round”) and SE (a recognised abbreviation of “southeast”) all placed “in” between WILD (i.e. “rugged”) and CHASE (i.e. “hunting land”). I can see no archaic markers against any of the definitions of CHASE, so why the redundant use of “old” in this clue, setter? At best it’s untidy, and at worst it’s an attempt to unfairly throw solvers off the scent using a word often abbreviated as O. Ugh.

  1. Doubt in the capacity of learner driver before motorway (5)

Answer: QUALM (i.e. “doubt”). Solution is QUA (i.e. “in the capacity of” in Latin) followed by L (i.e. “learner driver”) and M (a recognised abbreviation of “motorway”).

  1. Mostly wrong backing railway system run by clockwork (6)

Answer: ORRERY (i.e. “system run by clockwork”, being a mechanical representation of the solar system). Solution is ERROR (i.e. “wrong”) with it’s last letter removed (indicated by “mostly”) and the remainder reversed (indicated by “backing”). This is then followed by RY (a recognised abbreviation of “railway”), like so: ORRE-RY.

  1. Restricted activity near key society dance (6,4)

Answer: CLOSED SHOP (i.e. “restricted activity”). Solution is CLOSE (i.e. “near”) followed by D (i.e. “[musical] key”), then S (a recognised abbreviation of “society”) and HOP (i.e. “dance”).

  1. What can be done to uranium giving gold? (10)

Answer: ENRICHMENT. Solution satisfies “what can be done to uranium” and, playfully, “giving gold”.

  1. A long way into a meal (6)

Answer: FARINA (i.e. “meal” or ground corn. No, me neither). Solution is FAR (i.e. “a long way”) followed by IN (i.e. “into” – ugh, please…) and A.

  1. What helps reach peak mine working (5)

Answer: PITON (i.e. “what helps reach peak”, an iron peg used in mountaineering). Solution is PIT (i.e. “mine”) followed by ON (i.e. “working”). One nailed from the wordplay.

  1. Noted author lacked richness somehow (7,7)

Answer: CHARLES DICKENS (i.e. “noted author”). “Somehow” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of LACKED RICHNESS.

  1. Photographic image for example held by son (8)

Answer: NEGATIVE (i.e. “photographic image”). Solution is EG (i.e. “for example”, after the Latin exempli gratia) placed in or “held by” NATIVE (i.e. “son” or countryman), like so: N(EG)ATIVE.

  1. Explanation of treachery when abducting leader (6)

Answer: REASON (i.e. “explanation”). Solution is TREASON (i.e. “treachery”) with the first letter removed (indicated by “when abducting leader”).

  1. Determined what puzzles like this often are not? (8)

Answer: RESOLVED (i.e. “determined”). When written as RE-SOLVED the solution playfully satisfies “what puzzles like this often are not”. “Often” is probably a nod to the best-of Jumbo cryptic books that get published every September on a four-ish year lag from their original publication. I usually buy these books, but pretty soon I’ll start seeing Jumbos I’ve solved already here.

  1. Take away empty drainage pipe (6)

Answer: DEDUCT (i.e. “take away”). Solution is DE (i.e. “empty drainage”, i.e. the word “drainage” with all its middle letters removed) followed by DUCT (i.e. “pipe”).

  1. Money perhaps for crude trollop – dear, unfortunately (11)

Answer: PETRODOLLAR (i.e. “money perhaps for crude” oil). “Unfortunately” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of TROLLOP DEAR.

  1. Bombing raid round British ocean damaged navigation aid (5,6)

Answer: RADIO BEACON (i.e. “navigation aid”). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “bombing”) of RAID followed by O (i.e. “round”), then B (a recognised abbreviation of “British”) and another anagram (indicated by “damaged”), this time of OCEAN, like so: RADI-O-B-EACON.

  1. Routine opera illuminated by unknown (9)

Answer: NORMALITY (i.e. “routine”). Solution is NORMA (i.e. an “opera” by Vincenzo Bellini – its signature tune, Casta Diva, is used in those Jean-Paul Gaultier adverts you see on telly) followed by LIT (i.e. “illuminated”) and Y (i.e. “unknown” – setters love referring to X, Y or Z in solutions as unknowns).

  1. Move casually, catching Liberal conspirator (7)

Answer: PLOTTER (i.e. “conspirator”). Solution is POTTER (i.e. “move casually”) wrapped around or “catching” L (a recognised abbreviation of “Liberal”), like so: P(L)OTTER.

  1. Earlier head of house (5)

Answer: PRIOR. Solution satisfies “earlier” and a religious “head of house”.

  1. Plant is in my control (7)

Answer: MASTERY (i.e. “control”). Solution is ASTER (i.e. “plant”) placed “in” MY, like so: M(ASTER)Y.

  1. Hangs around birds with a becoming uniform (5)

Answer: LURKS (i.e. “hangs around”). Solution is LARKS (i.e. “birds”) “with a becoming uniform”, i.e. swapping A for U (“uniform” in the phonetic alphabet) like so: L(A)RKS => L(U)RKS.

  1. Fool, upper-class, new in career shows certainty (9)

Answer: ASSURANCE (i.e. “certainty”). Solution is ASS (i.e. “fool”) followed by U (a recognised abbreviation of the “upper-class” rarely seen outside of cryptic crosswords) and N (a recognised abbreviation of “new”) once placed “in” RACE (i.e. to “career”), like so: ASS-U-RA(N)CE.

Down clues

  1. What could be fast protecting king? Earthworks (5)

Answer: DYKES (i.e. “earthworks”). Solution is DYES (i.e. “what could be fast”) wrapped around or “protecting” K (a recognised abbreviation of “king” used in chess”), like so: DY(K)ES.

  1. Researcher’s goal is revolutionary mode of transport (9,8)

Answer: HORSELESS CARRIAGE (i.e. “mode of transport”). “Revolutionary” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of RESEARCHER’S GOAL IS.

  1. Where to go after dinner to entice home stable boy (7,4)

Answer: DRAWING ROOM (i.e. “where to go after dinner”, if you’ve got a house that big). Solution is DRAW (i.e. “entice”) followed by IN (i.e. at “home”) and GROOM (i.e. “stable boy”).

  1. Answer excellent for American also (2,4)

Answer: AS WELL (i.e. “also”). Solution is A (a recognised abbreviation of “answer”, as in Q&A) followed by SWELL (i.e. “excellent for American”).

  1. European hope, mostly about new language (8)

Answer: ETRUSCAN (i.e. “language” of an ancient state in Italy. So not on Google Translate, then). Solution is E (a recognised abbreviation of “European”) followed by TRUST (i.e. “hope”) once its last letter has been removed (indicated by “mostly”), then CA (i.e. “about”, specifically a recognised abbreviation of “circa”), then N (a recognised abbreviation of “new”), like so: E-TRUS-CA-N.

  1. Rambling stories of old men (4,8)

Answer: FOOT SOLDIERS (i.e. “men”). “Rambling” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of STORIES OF OLD.

  1. One taking over part of down train (10)

Answer: UNDERSTUDY (i.e. “one taking over [acting] part”). Solution is UNDER (i.e. “down”) followed by STUDY (i.e. to “train”).

  1. Fine golf gadget (5)

Answer: THING (i.e. “gadget” – Chambers supports it, stating a gadget can be “a what-d’you-call-it”). Solution is THIN (i.e. “fine”) followed by G (“golf” in the phonetic alphabet).

  1. Fool to overlook what diversion does if never taken all the way (9)

Answer: IGNORAMUS (i.e. “fool”). Solution is IGNORE (i.e. “overlook”) and AMUSE (i.e. “what diversion does”) once the last letter has been removed from each (indicated by “if never taken all the way”), like so: IGNOR-AMUS.

  1. Channel 50 delivered good service with no licence? (6-5)

Answer: STRAIT-LACED (i.e. “with no licence” or being “narrow in principles” (Chambers)). Solution is STRAIT (i.e. “channel”) followed by L (i.e. “50” as a Roman numeral), then ACED (i.e. “delivered good service” in tennis).

  1. Saintism regularly has a feminine side (5)

Answer: ANIMA (i.e. “feminine side” in Jungian psychology – a word I knew, weirdly). Solution is ANIM (i.e. “saintism regularly”, i.e. every other letter of SAINTISM) followed by A.

  1. Non-professionals can be idle people, not unknown (6)

Answer: LAYMEN (i.e. “non-professionals”). Solution is LAZY MEN (i.e. “idle people”) with the Z removed (indicated by “not unknown”, already discussed).

  1. Have many branches of food shops around Quebec with this from France (10)

Answer: DELIQUESCE (i.e. “have many branches” – a botanical term describing the veins in a leaf, it seems. Which would be lovely if we were being asked to derive an adjectival solution. Instead, the solution is a verb. In other words, “have many branches” ought to have led to the solution DELIQUESCENT, not to DELIQUESCE. Grammar police inbound, setter. Assume the position). Solution is DELIS (i.e. “food shops”, short for delicatessens) wrapped “around” QUE (shortened form of “Quebec”, Q in the phonetic alphabet) followed by CE (i.e. “this from France”, i.e. the French for “this”).

  1. Declare in favour of state (8)

Answer: PROCLAIM (i.e. “declare”). Solution is PRO (i.e. “in favour of”) followed by CLAIM (i.e. to “state”).

  1. Complex ways of combining pasta, initially just with oil (9,8)

Answer: SPAGHETTI JUNCTION (i.e. “complex ways”, ways in this case being another word for roads). Solution is SPAGHETTI (i.e. “pasta”) followed by J (i.e. “initially just”, i.e. the first letter of “just”) and UNCTION (i.e. “oil”).

  1. Teach – and where to do it (6)

Answer: INFORM (i.e. “teach”). When written as IN FORM the solution also satisfies “where to do it [i.e. teach]”, forms being another word for school classes.

  1. Object to including mere divorce case defendant (10)

Answer: RESPONDENT (i.e. “divorce case defendant”). Solution is RESENT (i.e. “object to”) wrapped around or “including” POND (i.e. “mere”, or body of water), like so: RES(POND)ENT.

  1. Marches right on in fine row (8)

Answer: FRONTIER (i.e. “marches” – a variant meaning of the word is a boundary or border). Solution is R (a recognised abbreviation of “right”) and ON both placed “in” between F (a recognised abbreviation of “fine” used in grading pencils) and TIER (i.e. “row”), like so: F-(R-ON)-TIER.

  1. Young boy’s quiet state (6)

Answer: SHAVER (i.e. informal word for a “young boy”). Solution is SH (i.e. “quiet”) followed by AVER (i.e. to “state”).

  1. Shameful supporting vice admiral’s bragging (12)

Answer: VAINGLORIOUS (i.e. “bragging”). Solution is INGLORIOUS (i.e. “shameful”) placed after or “supporting” – this being a down clue – VA (a recognised abbreviation of “vice admiral”), like so: VA-INGLORIOUS.

  1. Store into which oldest cargo could be moved? (4,7)

Answer: COLD STORAGE (i.e. “store” – ugh again, setter. Surely a better alternative was available. I mean, you’ve got a derivative form of the target word sitting right there in the solution. I’m beginning to doubt the editor clapped eyes on this puzzle before publication). “Could be moved” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of OLDEST CARGO.

  1. Bit player in speech, one acting with good force? (11)

Answer: PEACEKEEPER (i.e. “one acting with good force”, presumably the United Nations). “In speech” indicates homophone. Solution is a homophone of PIECE (i.e. “bit”) followed by KEEPER (i.e. “player” in a number of ball games, e.g. football).

  1. Building ark fashioned with cypress (10)

Answer: SKYSCRAPER (i.e. “building”). “Fashioned” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of ARK and CYPRESS.

  1. Chosen junior in later stages will get it years later? (9)

Answer: SENIORITY. The solution satisfies the clue in general, but also comprises SEN and IOR (i.e. “chosen junior in later stages”, i.e. the last halves of “chosen” and “junior”), followed by IT and Y (a recognised abbreviation of “years”).

  1. Feud with old soldier about issue with volunteers (8)

Answer: VENDETTA (i.e. “feud”). Solution is VET (i.e. “old soldier”, short for veteran) wrapped “about” END (i.e. “issue”) and followed by TA (i.e. “volunteers”, i.e. the Territorial Army of old), like so: V(END)ET-TA.

  1. English horse, male, Black Beauty perhaps? (6)

Answer: EPONYM (i.e. “Black Beauty perhaps” – an eponymous work is one that shares its name with its central character or its creator (as in album titles)). Solution is E (a recognised abbreviation of “English”) followed by PONY (i.e. “horse”) and M (a recognised abbreviation of “male”).

  1. Sees benches in quadrangles (6)

Answer: COURTS. A triple-header, I believe, where the solution satisfies “sees” or pays attention to, “benches” or assemblies of judges, and “quadrangles” or four-sided areas.

  1. Names, regular features of the Proms, succeeded (5)

Answer: TERMS (i.e. “names”). Solution is TERM (i.e. “regular features of the Proms”, i.e. every other letter of THE PROMS) followed by S (a recognised abbreviation of “succeeded”).

  1. Forged alloy providing firm support (5)

Answer: LOYAL (i.e. “firm support”). “Forged” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of ALLOY.

  1. Steel used to form some inner vessel (5)

Answer: NERVE (i.e. “steel”). “Some” indicates the solution has been hidden in the clue, like so: IN(NER VE)SSEL.

Times Jumbo Cryptic Crossword 1569

[FBV (French By Volume): 10.0%]
KNOW YOUR LIMITS: The UK Chief Medical Officers recommend adults do not regularly take more than 14 units of Frenchness a week

Stinker time! You can tell as this week’s setter is the one who likes to use every letter of the alphabet in their grids. Sadly, this Jumbo wasn’t one of their best. While there were plenty of well-written clues and creative misdirection at play, there were a few clues that tried waaaaaay too hard, particularly in throwing solvers off the scent with word lengths. It’s great that you found a dictionary slack enough to allow what you were trying to do, setter, I’m happy for you, but tricks like that don’t add anything to the enjoyment of the puzzle. Pity. Still, at least you didn’t reach for the office GridFill 4000(TM) at the drop of a hat, unlike some of your peers.

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 taken far too long to write up, taking a bigger bite out of the weekend than was anticipated, dammit, then you might find my Just For Fun page of use, where you’ll find links to solutions for hundreds of the things. Elsewhere there are the usual ancient book reviews and a story of mine.

Thanks again for the kind words and input. It’s always interesting to hear how other solvers fared once they set down their pens. Till next time, stay cool out there kids.

LP

Across clues

  1. Trophy competed for once lad’s done with rap music (8,3)

Answer: ADMIRAL’S CUP (i.e. yachting “trophy competed for once”). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “done”, probably as in doing someone in) of LAD and RAP MUSIC.

  1. Where Rosemary and Iris may go until bedtime? (7,4)

Answer: POTTING SHED. Clue plays on rosemary and irises being plants rather than girl’s names, and how one would plant them in a potting shed before transferring them to flower “beds”. You get the idea.

  1. Some music track accompanying film on aristocrat (7,3,7)

Answer: COUNTRY AND WESTERN (i.e. “some music”). Solution is RY (i.e. “track”, specifically a recognised abbreviation of a railway), AND (i.e. “accompanying”) and WESTERN (i.e. “film” genre) all placed “on” or after COUNT (i.e. “aristocrat”), like so: COUNT-(RY-AND-WESTERN).

  1. River where Mississippi is crossing delta (5)

Answer: INDUS (i.e. “river” – a popular one with setters). Solution is IN US (i.e. “where Mississippi is”) wrapped around or “crossing” D (“delta” in the phonetic alphabet), like so: IN-(D)-US.

  1. One’s closing on criminal finally going straight (6)

Answer: LINEAR (i.e. “going straight”). Solution is I NEAR (i.e. “one’s closing on”) placed “on” or after L (i.e. “criminal finally”, i.e. the last letter of “criminal”), like so: L-(I-NEAR).

  1. Takes orders from US agent, returning diamonds (8)

Answer: DEFROCKS (i.e. “takes orders from” – an order in this case being a rank or religious fraternity, both apply). Solution is FED (i.e. “US agent”) reversed (indicated by “returning”) and followed by ROCKS (slang for “diamonds”), like so: DEF-ROCKS.

  1. Carry a couple of speakers – it’s a question of destination (7)

Answer: WHERETO (i.e. “it’s a question of destination”). Solution comprises homophones (indicated by “of speakers”) of WEAR (i.e. “carry”) and TWO (i.e. “a couple”), like so: WHERE-TO.

  1. Lap dance blunder (5,4)

Answer: ROUND TRIP (i.e. “lap”). Solution is ROUND (i.e. a “dance” in a ring) followed by TRIP (i.e. “blunder”).

  1. Perhaps with walkers on street, one should stop motorists (3-5)

Answer: RED-LIGHT. Solution satisfies “perhaps with walkers on street” – streetwalkers being a reference to prostitutes who might ply their trade in a city’s red-light district, or so I’ve heard anyway – and “one should stop motorists”.

  1. Shrub, one found by river (4)

Answer: ACER (i.e. “shrub”). Solution is ACE (i.e. playing card with a value of “one”) followed by R (a recognised abbreviation of “river”).

  1. Mountain lake of a height one on foot can handle (5)

Answer: TAHOE (i.e. “mountain lake” between California and Nevada). Solution is A and H (a recognised abbreviation of “height”) both placed in or “handled” by TOE (i.e. “one on foot”), like so: T(A-H)OE.

  1. Old governor in whom rested blame (6)

Answer: SATRAP (i.e. “old governor” – over to Chambers: “a viceroy or governor of an ancient Persian province”). Solution is SAT (i.e. “rested”) followed by RAP (i.e. “blame”, as in taking the rap for something). Once nailed solely from the wordplay, eventually.

  1. Hold up small bouquet (10)

Answer: BUTTONHOLE. Solution satisfies “hold up” or “to detain in talk” (Chambers), and “small bouquet”.

  1. Cunningly led us on: I fancy that’s wrong (8)

Answer: DELUSION (i.e. “that’s wrong”). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “cunningly”) of LED US ON I.

  1. I walk on ice, turning you mad (3,4,7)

Answer: OFF ONE’S TROLLEY (i.e. “mad”). Solution is ONE (i.e. “I”) and STROLL (i.e. “walk”) both placed “on” or after OFF (i.e. “ice”, both slang words for killing someone) and followed by YE (i.e. ye olde “you”) once reversed (indicated by “turning”), like so: OFF-(ONE-STROLL)-EY.

  1. Drive to entrance of church with weapon, causing anger (5,9)

Answer: CHARM OFFENSIVE (i.e. a “drive to entrance”). Solution is CH (a recognised abbreviation of “church”) followed by ARM (i.e. “weapon”) and OFFENSIVE (i.e. “causing anger”).

  1. Nice white girl, observe, with short spear (3,5)

Answer: VIN BLANC (i.e. “Nice white” – Nice being a city in France and the solution being French for “white” wine). Solution is VI (i.e. “girl’s” name, short for Violet and such) followed by NB (i.e. “observe”, from the Latin nota bene), then LANCE (i.e. “spear”) once its last letter has been removed (indicated by “short”), like so: VI-NB-LANC. #French

  1. Made over five hundred European visits without protesting (10)

Answer: REDESIGNED (i.e. “made over”). Solution is D (i.e. Roman numeral for “five hundred”) and E (a recognised abbreviation of “European”) both placed in or “visiting” RESIGNED (i.e. “without protesting”), like so: RE(D-E)SIGNED.

  1. Liberals on lookout for a hero in the Great War (6)

Answer: Edith CAVELL (i.e. a pioneer of modern nursing and “a hero in the Great War”). Solution is L and L (both abbreviations of “Liberal”) placed “on” or after CAVE (i.e. “lookout” – a variant meaning of CAVE is to “beware”. If, like me, you were wondering which idiot allowed “lookout” to be one word in this regard, step forward the Collins family of dictionaries. I hope they are proud of themselves), like so: CAVE-(L-L).

  1. Party involves one not drinking as previously (5)

Answer: DITTO (i.e. “as previously”). Solution is DO (i.e. “party”) wrapped around or “involving” I (i.e. “[Roman numeral] one”) and TT (i.e. “not drinking”, being a recognised abbreviation of a teetotaller), like so: D(I-TT)O.

  1. Admired one’s having nothing to do with a dictator? (4)

Answer: IDOL (i.e. “admired one”). “With a dictator” indicates homophone. Solution is a homophone of IDLE (i.e. “having nothing to do”).

  1. Reserve place for farm animal, regularly taken inside (4,4)

Answer: FORT KNOX (i.e. US gold “reserve place”). Solution is FOR and OX (i.e. “farm animal”) with TKN (i.e. “regularly taken”, i.e. every other letter of TAKEN) placed “inside”, like so: FOR(TKN)OX.

  1. Willing female volunteers in experiment, one run by hosts (9)

Answer: TESTATRIX (i.e. “willing female”, as in one writing a will). Solution is TA (i.e. “volunteers”, i.e. the old Territorial Army) placed “in” TEST (i.e. “experiment”) and followed by I (i.e. “[Roman numeral] one”) once placed between or “hosted” by R (a recognised abbreviation of “run” used in a number of ball games) and X (i.e. “by”, i.e. the multiplication symbol), like so: TES(TA)T-(R-(I)-X).

  1. Re-engage, presumably, after finally playing volley? (7)

Answer: GUNFIRE (i.e. “volley”). Solution is UNFIRE (i.e. “re-engage [a former employee], presumably”) placed “after” G (i.e. “finally playing”, i.e. the last letter of “playing”), like so: G-UNFIRE.

  1. Who’s ties turned out to be most gawdy? (8)

Answer: SHOWIEST (i.e. “most gawdy” – curious that the setter opts for the lesser-spotted Shakespearean spelling here. Plumage, as Wayne Mardle might suggest). “Turned out” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of WHO’S TIES.

  1. Lines of WWI troops cut down on the way (6)

Answer: STANZA (i.e. “lines” of poetry). Solution is ANZAC (i.e. “WWI troops”, short for the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps) with its last letter removed (indicated by “cut down”) and the remainder placed “on” or after ST (i.e. “the way”, specifically a recognised abbreviation of “street”), like so: ST-ANZA.

  1. Mate to duck out of duty initially, and degenerate (5)

Answer: DRAKE (i.e. “mate to duck”). Solution is D (i.e. “duty initially”, i.e. the first letter of “duty”) followed by RAKE (i.e. “degenerate”).

  1. Versatile player getting drug into GCHQ in a tracksuit, somehow (5-6,6)

Answer: QUICK-CHANGE ARTIST (i.e. “versatile player” or performer). Solution is E (i.e. “drug”, being a slang term for ecstasy) placed “into” an anagram (indicated by “somehow”) of GCHQ IN A TRACKSUIT.

  1. Inexperienced goalie: one must take care of course (11)

Answer: GREENKEEPER (i.e. “one must take care of [golf] course”). Solution is GREEN (i.e. “inexperienced”) followed by KEEPER (i.e. “goalie”).

  1. Standard films shown after a light feast (2,6,3)

Answer: ST DAVID’S DAY (i.e. “feast”). Solution is STD (a recognised abbreviation of “standard”) followed by VIDS (i.e. “films”) once placed “after” A. This is all then followed by DAY (i.e. “light”), like so: (STD-(A)-VIDS)-DAY

Down clues

  1. Account by famous face never-ending, did judge put his foot down? (11)

Answer: ACCELERATED (i.e. “did…put his foot down”). Solution is AC (a recognised abbreviation of “account”) followed by CELEB (i.e. “famous face”, short for celebrity) once its last letter has been removed (indicated by “never-ending”), then RATED (i.e. “did judge”), like so: AC-CELE-RATED.

  1. Keen for us to enter Merchant Navy (5)

Answer: MOURN (i.e. to “keen”). Solution is OUR (i.e. “for us”) placed in or “entering” MN (a recognised abbreviation of “Merchant Navy”), like so: M(OUR)N.

  1. County’s brand of football ultimately brought win (7)

Answer: RUTLAND (i.e. “county”). Solution is RU (i.e. “brand of [rugby] football”, specifically Rugby Union) followed by T (i.e. “ultimately brought”, i.e. the last letter of “brought”), then LAND (i.e. to “win”).

  1. Sinking spades, kill plants (4)

Answer: LAYS (i.e. “plants”). Solution is SLAY (i.e. “kill”) with the S (a recognised abbreviation of “spades” used in card games) moved on a few notches (indicated by “sinking” – this being a down clue), like so: (S)LAY => LAY(S).

  1. Track card: the PIN’s changed (6,4)

Answer: CINDER PATH (i.e. race “track” laid with cinders). “Changed” indicates anagram. Solution is an anagram of CARD THE PIN.

  1. High-level meeting might end swiftly (5,9)

Answer: POWER BREAKFAST (i.e. “high-level meeting”). Solution is POWER (i.e. “might”) followed by BREAK (i.e. “end”) and FAST (i.e. “swiftly”).

  1. After false bottom for case, and zip? (8)

Answer: POSTCODE (i.e. “zip”, i.e. a ZIP code, the US’s version). Solution is POST (i.e. “after”) followed by COD (i.e. “false”) and E (i.e. “bottom for case”, i.e. the last letter of “case” – this being a down clue).

  1. Upset that key is removed from lock (5)

Answer: TRESS (i.e. “lock” of hair). Not 100% on this one, but I think the solution is ASSERT (i.e. “that” – one I’d take issue with if this is correct. Taking “that” to be a demonstrative adjective rather than a conjunction, which I presume was the setter’s intention, I’d argue it’s too big a leap to reach the solution, ASSERT. ASSERTION, yes, given “that” could be a suitable example, but not its verb form ASSERT. Put another way, someone doesn’t “that” their opinion to another, do they? Of course not. That would be silly. It would sound like something Google Translate would spit out when translating a phrase from English into ten successive languages and back to English again. Anyway, world keeps spinning…) with the A removed (indicated by “[musical] key is removed”) and the remainder reversed (indicated by “upset” – this being a down clue).

[EDIT: As a number of commenters have… er… commented, the solution was actually DISTRESS (i.e. “upset”) with the D (a musical “key”) and IS “removed”. Thanks, all! – LP]

  1. Here’s an idea for cooking with a new wok (1,4,4)

Answer: I KNOW WHAT (i.e. “here’s an idea”). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “cooking”) of WITH A N (a recognised abbreviation of “new”) and WOK.

  1. Counter person’s resistance, as I for one recalled (6)

Answer: Hans GEIGER (i.e. “counter person”, inventor of a device that measures radioactivity levels). Solution is R (a recognised abbreviation of “resistance” used in physics) followed by EG (i.e. “as” or for example), then I, then EG again (i.e. “for one”, another way of saying “for example”). This is all then reversed (indicated by “recalled”), like so: GE-I-GE-R.

  1. This old teacher’s home outskirts of Glenties? Potentially (5-6,6)

Answer: HEDGE-SCHOOL MASTER. A hedge-school was “an open-air school, common in Ireland in the 17c and 18c during the ban on Catholic education” (Chambers). It also lists schoolmaster as all one word within the phrase, but I guess dictionaries are going to vary on this one. Anyway, the solution is an anagram (indicated by “potentially”) of OLD TEACHER’S HOME and GS (i.e. “outskirts of Glenties”, i.e. the first and last letters of “Glenties”). Interesting. Also, how long must the setter have been searching for placenames in Ireland beginning with G and ending in S before hitting on Glenties? Oh, wait, Wikipedia. Right.

  1. It’s impolite to search through notes during home repairs (11)

Answer: DISCOURTESY (i.e. “it’s impolite”). Solution is SCOUR (i.e. “search through”) and TES (i.e. “notes”, specifically a plural of TE in the sol-fa notation, also spelled TI) both placed “during” DIY (i.e. “home repairs”, or Do-It-Yourself, known in my house as Screw-That-Call-A-Professional), like so: DI(SCOUR-TES)Y.

  1. Slight split appearing beneath middle of floorboards (8)

Answer: BRUSHOFF (i.e. to “slight”). Solution is RUSH OFF (i.e. “split”) placed after or “beneath” B (i.e. “middle [letter] of floorboards”), like so: B-(RUSH-OFF). If, like me, you were wondering what idiot thought it would be a good idea to accept this as a single word, then step forward again the Collins family of dictionaries. They’ll let anything go it seems, the lexical slatterns.

  1. Posh chap quaffed beer when talking about estate persistently (2,4,3,4,4)

Answer: UP HILL AND DOWN DALE (i.e. “persistently”). Solution is U (i.e. “posh”, a recognised abbreviation of the upper classes you hardly ever see outside of cryptic crosswords) followed by PHIL (i.e. “chap’s” name) and DOWND ALE (i.e. “quaffed beer” taken as a homophone, indicated by “when talking”). This is all wrapped “about” LAND (i.e. “estate”), like so: U-PHIL-(LAND)-DOWND-ALE.

  1. Used folder uniquely when mounting demos (6)

Answer: INURED (i.e. “used” to). “Demos” indicates the solution has been hidden in the clue, while “mounting” indicates the solution has been reversed – this being a down clue – like so: FOL(DER UNI)QUELY.

  1. Around November, fragments of bud come as a shock? (8)

Answer: UNCOMBED (i.e. “as a shock” of hair). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “fragments”) of BUD COME wrapped “around” N (“November” in the phonetic alphabet), like so: U(N)COMBED.

  1. Film about when rugby official’s becoming most distant – at three o’clock? (8)

Answer: EASTMOST (i.e. “most distant – at three o’clock”). Solution is ET (i.e. “film”, specifically ET – The Extra-Terrestrial) wrapped “about” AS (i.e. “when”) and TMO’S (i.e. “rugby official’s”, specifically a Television Match Official – not something that’s in any of my dictionaries, another transgression from this setter), like so: E(AS-TMO’S)T. Also, how naff that half of the solution is sitting there as clear as day in the clue.

  1. Group that has lately been rolling off our neighbour’s tongue? (8,6)

Answer: NOUVEAUX RICHES (i.e. “group that has lately been rolling” or come into wealth). The remainder of the clue plays on how this is a French phrase. I mean, of course it is. It’s in a Times cryptic Jumbo, isn’t it? #FrenchAgain

  1. Old French taxes extended? Or cut at the end (8)

Answer: TAILLESS (i.e. “cut at the end”). Solution is TAILLES (i.e. “old French taxes” – no, me neither. Bradford’s to the rescue here) with, I guess, the last letter repeated or “extended”. Weak, if that is the solution. If a better one comes to light then I’ll update the post. #FrenchAgainAgain

  1. Frenchman’s head suitably clad? Or missing something? (6)

Answer: BEREFT (i.e. “missing something”). Solution is F (i.e. “Frenchman’s head” or first letter) placed or “clad” in BERET, French headwear, like so: BERE(F)T. #FrenchAgainAgainAgain

  1. Spotted best friend bearing down on goal – just tops! (8,3)

Answer: CARRIAGE DOG (another name for a dalmatian or “spotted best friend”). Solution is CARRIAGE (i.e. “bearing”) followed by DOG (i.e. “down on goal – just tops”, i.e. the first letter of “down”, “on” and “goal”).

  1. Transported from Cyprus: a hot cross bun ingredient? (5,6)

Answer: CHOUX PASTRY (i.e. “bun ingredient” from… guess where. Le Piat d’Or! You’re right! Choux pastry does indeed come from France. It’s almost like you’re psychic). Solution is an anagram (indicated by “transported from”) of CYPRUS, A HOT and X (i.e. “cross”). #FrenchAgainAgainAgainAgain

  1. Boy in black tie departs, abandoned (10)

Answer: JETTISONED (i.e. “abandoned”). Solution is SON (i.e. “boy”) placed “in” JET (i.e. “black”), TIE and D (a recognised abbreviation of “departs” used on timetables), like so: JET-TI(SON)ED.

  1. Grand mechanical procedure’s what Parisian finds bizarre (9)

Answer: GROTESQUE (i.e. “bizarre”). Solution is G (a recognised abbreviation of “grand”) followed by ROTE’S (i.e. “mechanical procedure’s”) and QUE (i.e. “what Parisian”, i.e. the French for “what”). Zut alors, I’m going to have to start placing trigger warnings on these pages for any Francophobes visiting. If you have a sensitive disposition toward the French – booze cruises notwithstanding – then don’t worry, I’ve got your back. Should any French references or solutions creep their way into Jumbos from now on then I’ll add this handy warning image.

That way you can safely sidestep the solutions that may cause you distress, allowing you to get on with your day. I’ll also provide an FBV (French By Volume) measure at the top of each post, just so you can see the strength of Frenchness in each week’s Jumbo. As you can see, this week’s was quite a potent one. #HereToHelp

  1. Witness, only on kerb, never wholly crossing roundabout? (8)

Answer: ONLOOKER (i.e. “witness”). Solution is ONLY ON KERB with the last letters of each removed (indicated by “never wholly”) and the remainders placed around or “crossing” O (i.e. “roundabout”), like so: ONL-O-(O)-KER.

  1. In clothes worn by archaeologist, but only outside (7)

Answer: ATTIRED (i.e. “in clothes”). Solution is TIRED (i.e. “worn”) placed after or “by” AT (i.e. “archaeologist, but only outside”, i.e. the first and last letters of “archaeologist”), like so: AT-TIRED.

  1. Cohabiting, as it happens, fashionable (4-2)

Answer: LIVE-IN. Solution is LIVE (i.e. “as it happens”) followed by IN (i.e. “fashionable”).

  1. Cut corners in slalom, maybe, having reduced speed (5)

Answer: SKIMP (i.e. “cut corners”). Solution is SKI (i.e. “slalom, maybe” – other skiing disciplines are available) followed by MPH (i.e. “speed”, or Miles Per Hour) once its last letter has been removed (indicated by “reduced”), like so: SKI-MP.

  1. Broadcast nearby, marketing beauty of lake and river (5)

Answer: NAIAD (i.e. water nymph or “beauty of lake and river”). Solution is a homophone (indicated by “broadcast”) of NEAR (i.e. “nearby”) followed by AD (i.e. “marketing”), like so: NAI-AD.

  1. Fuel somewhat undervalued (4)

Answer: DERV (i.e. diesel “fuel”). “Somewhat” indicates the solution has been hidden in the clue, like so: UN(DERV)ALUED. One I remembered from a recent puzzle, if I’m honest.