Solving time: about 45 minutes, in two sittings.

I did about half of this in 15 minutes, with quite a few answers going in on first read-through. Then needed a further 30 minutes later on to complete the thing. The SE section was the last to be completed, with IMPROBABLY and OSRIC the last to go in.
I was fairly sure about ASTRAKHAN from the wordplay, but didn’t know the city. I also checked out GLUTTON to discover a new meaning for me.


1 B(ARCH)ART – BART is short for baronet, I think. I did consider PIECHART with PART = short, but couldn’t make any further sense!
6 JACK,A,L – presumably a reference to Carlos the Jackal?
10 I’M PATIENCE – I remember Patience Strong being the favourite poet of my grandmother.
14 T(HEAL)AMO TAMO anagram of moat.
18 KNI(G)HT – THINK(ponder) reversed. Having the N, I thought that was the note for a while.
22 FRAU[d]
24 IMP,ROB,ABLY – I got the IMP bit and the ABLY bit, but couldn’t make PROB=mug – I had too many Ps in my mind.
26 TUB,THUMPER – TUB=but reversed. I had a pet rabbit called Thumper once, but the setter was probably thinking of the one in Bambi.


2 ASTRA[y],KHAN – a new city to me.
15 ATTRI,BUTE – anagram of trait + the Isle of Bute, which I vaguely remembered.
19 GLUTTON – another name for wolverine – I didn’t know that.
25 OS,RIC[h] – Osric, a courtier in Hamlet.
27 PUB – B,UP reversed.

26 comments on “24007”

  1. Another slow start. I must have read nearly a dozen clues before an answer leapt out at me, FRAU at 22, but then, working upwards from the SW, they came thick and fast and I ended up solving it all in 23 minutes which is not a bad time for me.

    Actually I had one error discovered when checking the wordplay I hadn’t understood whilst filling the grid; I had put C in ASTRAKHAN instead of K.

    And I didn’t understand “Forest creature” at 19 until I looked it up and found GLUTTON is another name for a wolverine.

    QED: 0,7,7

  2. My proposed query about glutton already answered by jackkt above – thank you.
    22 minutes for a fairly routine puzzle although I liked 18.
    Not so sure about “comprehend” in 1a.
  3. 6:37 for this – my best post-op effort, I think. But can still see room for improvement – although the NW filled in easily from BARCHART and the downs, my first across in the NE was TARGET and the others had to come from the checking letters in the nice’n’easy 6/7/8D.
  4. The ease with which I completed the upper half deceived me into thinking I’d break the 15-minuter barrier, but I found the lower half tougher and took 25 minutes in the end. Last to go in were KNIGHT and GLUTTON, though didn’t understand the wordplay to the latter. Thanks, jackkt, for the explanation.
  5. 16 minutes to get all but three (the lightning bolt formed by ASTRAKHAN, KNIGHT and GLUTTON) which I then spent quarter of an hour hemming and hawing over. Then I fell asleep. Looking at them again this morning I can’t see what my problem was (other than not knowing Astrakhan, which I thought was in Harry Potter, not Russia), but that’s usually a sign of good clues. Probably ended up being around 35 to 40 minutes.
  6. 18:05 here, held up at the end by glutton and knight.

    This was a strange concoction of the ridiculously easy (cleaver/ascot), some clever clues 6a, 6d, 17, daft Shakespeare references (well one, anyway) and some constructions that I didn’t understand until coming here (bar chart, glutton, and impatience which I still don’t see (is there a G&S reference?).

    Q-0, E-5, D-4

    From the Uxbridge:
    Maisonette – small lodge member

    My offering:
    Veto – German breakfast cereal

    1. Penfold, the reference at 10 is to the poet Patience Strong. I can’t judge how obscure this is.
  7. About 10 mins – all seemed pretty straightforward except for GLUTTON, which I couldn’t quite figure out, like others above. Still not thrilled by it as a clue, though I can see jackkt’s explanation must be right.
  8. I thought today’s was very easy and did it in about 12 minutes last night. That’s probably as quick a solve as ever for me, and expect others to blaze through this one. I didn’t see any standout or very difficult clues, although I did enjoy ‘tub thumper’. Regards.
  9. A straightforward 25 minute solve. I also didn’t know the wolverine reference. A little surprised at Astrakhan not being better known. In case it crops up again it’s worth remembering that it is also a lamb, the skin of the lamb and men and women’s jackets and coats made from that skin.
  10. I thought 17dn (What could make one lie square? – EQUALISER) was brilliant. Has hardly been mentioned yet, so is it only me?
    1. No, not just you – I fully agree. I’ve noticed recently that on days when the puzzle is easier & so the solve is quick, I tend not to notice even very good clues while solving, but this one really stood out.


  11. 5.26. As Penfold has said, some of these clues seemed almost ridiculously easy. My main holdups were 1a (I was initially thinking curve=arc, not curve=arch), and 19 at the end – like many other posters I had no idea GLUTTON had this other meaning, and stopped briefly to consider if there could be anything else that fitted.
  12. Can’t be him if Wikipedia is right in thinking he’s still alive. Presumably the character in Frederick Forsyth’s The Day of the Jackal, apparently the source of Carlos’s nickame.

    Edited at 2008-09-01 03:33 pm (UTC)

  13. A very easy start to the week. i didnt know that a glutton wsa a wolverine creature…but i do now. COD a toss up between KNIGHT and EQUALISER. around an hour while working at the same time!
  14. EQUALISER at 17 dn was the stand-out contender for COD, I thought, for its unimpeachably accurate but cleverly misleading definition.

    Like others, I found this an odd mix of the almost ridiculously easy (e.g. 8 dn) with the quite hard. The glutton-wolverine connection was new to me, as it seems to have been to almost everyone else.

    I happened to know the obscure Waggledagger reference at 25 dn that annoyed some others, so I’m not complaining. But I was surprised that this didn’t draw so much as a bat-squeak of protest from Jimbo. I would have expected it to have had him choking on his Dorset knobs. Perhaps a version of the infamous Jowett principle invoked in these comment columns a couple of weeks ago was at work – “unfair specialist knowledge is what I don’t know; fair specialist knowledge is what I do know”?

    30 mins for me.

    Michael H

    1. Much more likely to be because I’d washed the knobs down with a pint or two of Badger’s before tackling the puzzle and was thus in a very mellow state. I agree it was an obscure reference but an easy one!
  15. Didn’t finish this in one sitting, but did manage to blunder all the way through it in three short sittings with snacks. ASTRAKHAN from wordplay, FRAU from definition.
  16. I have just started looking at crosswords and am very impressed at the speed you all solve things. Note 15: Attribute not atrribute 🙂
  17. Pretty fast, just over 8 minutes.

    The hotel I stayed in last night only had the Indy available this morning – unused to the style I got held up on that one, particularly in the SW corner, and it was same in the Times, the trio of 18, 19 and 26 adding 2-3 minutes to what could have been a blistering time otherwise.

    An easy start to the week, then. Are we in for punishment later?

    Q-0 E-6 D-4 COD 14 (nice image and felt like a fresh clue treatment).

  18. Triple clues always stump me, so I scratched my head this morning (15 Sept, New York time) over 5d (“spinner’s cap and sweater”) for some time.

    Got “glutton” and “impatience,” but had to google ’em to “get” them, so to speak. Am now trying to figure out how to work “glutton” into an urban conversation.

  19. No – it doesn’t have the same ring to it. No wonder we all use WOLVERINE and did not know the alternative. Do they always live in forests? It was my LOI – put in with a shrug and a “?” next to it. Thankfully TfTT usually comes up with the answers to the ?s.

    There is a footer XI of “easies” – thankfully I think I know how these work:

    9a Shock caused by dangerous feat? No end (4)
    STUN (T)

    11a Small house on estate, I’m getting converted (10)
    MAISONETTE. Anagram of (on estate I’m)*. I like Penfold’s Uxbridge dictionary definition (above).

    13a Prohibition – check Chicago’s last (4)
    VET O. Russian Wheat-O according to Penfold.

    16a Sailor needing to achieve objective (6)

    28a Record composer heard (4)
    (Brahms and) LIST

    29a Weird scene must involve a session with a spiritualist (6)
    SE A NCE

    4d Strange article defending made up story (5)
    A LIE N

    5d Spinner’s cap and sweater (3)
    TOP. Beware the triple definition!

    7d Conservative, one departing in a chopper (7)

    8d A Caledonian racecourse (5)
    A SCOT

    17d What could make one lie square? (9)

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