Club Monthly 20197 February 2017

Solving Time: 40 minutes, quick for me once again this month though my efforts to parse 16dn seem unconvincing so far.. otherwise the usual very high quality stuff we have come to expect from the Club Monthly

cd = cryptic definition, dd = double definition, rev = reversed, anagrams are *(–), homophones indicated in “”

Dictionaries: The Club Monthly uses several dictionaries as sources, and why not? The main ones are the Concise Oxford Dictionary (COD), Collins, and Chambers. I can’t afford all those so I use Chambers, the online Collins dictionary and the ODO (Oxford Dictionary Online). Sometimes the online OED too.

1. Italian writer’s snake constricting 200 with one more loop (9)
Boccaccio – CC (200) in BOA, + CCI (201, ie one more) + O (loop)
6. Pleasant, not too warm, with temperature set to 50 (5)
lepid – TEPID with the T changed to L
9. Queen Victoria in fits over caviar (7)
Sevruga – VR (Victoria Regina) in AGUES (fits) rev. Never liked caviar.
10. Nasty bugs ail plantain seeds (7)
isabgul – *(BUGS AIL)
11. What’s pretentious for me, former princess wears divine headdresses (5)
modii – DI in MOI (me, a la Miss Piggy
12. Move an inch, even if entering like a ghost (9)
chthonian – THO (even if) in *(AN INCH). An unlikely looking word of Greek origin, meaning “to do with the underworld”
13. This girl Vera would return a wake-up call (5)
Ellie – A REVEILLE, rev., and with the Vera removed ..
14. Sentimentality put on at an early age – no good leaving congratulations (4,2,3)
good on you – GOO + DON (put on) + YOU(ng)
17. Note penned by Greek poet, note simply to fill a gap? (5-4)
plain-darn – LA (note) in PINDAR (poet) + N(ote). Pindar was a rather opaque Greek poet, fortunate in that unlike most of his contemporaries much of his work has survived. Personally, I incline more to the Pam Ayres end of the spectrum..
18. Old gold coin with none of the buck’s spending power? (5)
obang – a reference to the phrase “More bang for your buck”
19. Act of sniper possibly trapping people in rampage (5,4)
rifle shot – FLESH (people, as in eg “flesh & blood) in RIOT (rampage)
22. Time in pub bar first using smaller base than usual (5)
octal – T(ime) in (l)OCAL (pub, bar first). The usual base being 10, no prizes for guessing which base octal is
24. Most of large towns see university’s backing of complaint affecting vision (7)
uveitic – CITIE(s) + V (vide, see as in qv) + U, all rev.
25. Rich, not poor, about to whine (7)
opulent – PULE (whine) in *(NOT)
26. Female senior apprentice dumping duo in the van (5)
ainee – (tr)AINEE. I thought it was just a girl’s name to start with but no, it is (fem. version of) a French word meaning “senior.”
27. Desperate youth crossing street before long (4-5)
last-ditch – ST in LAD + ITCH (long)

1. Black space in print goes round like this sweep (5)
besom – SO (like this) in B(lack) + EM (space). My granny called a broom a besom, in those days they were the old-fashioned witches’ type
2. Brubeck’s Back in Black? Using their first names is a source of poison (9)
cevadilla – DAVE (Brubeck) rev. in CILLA (Black, stage name of Priscilla White). She was a cashier in Boots the Chemist in West Kirby, near where I lived at the time .. though I understand she moved on to better things, subsequently
3. Edible seed cooked in a bake contains depleted uranium (5,4)
aduki bean – D(epleted) U(ranium) in *(IN A BAKE)
4. Conservative Muslim’s allowed to hold minor worker and charge Roman for this, relating to engravings (15)
chalcographical – C (con.), + COG (minor worker) + RAP (charge) + HIC (Latin for “this”) in HALAL. I was terrified by the thought of a 15 letter word meaning “conservative Muslim” but fortunately the def. was at the other end..
5. With jaws that recede as though potion’s foul (15)
opisthognathous – *(AS THOUGH POTIONS). Not quite an impossible anagram as the word has some similarity to prognathous, its antonym
6. Flat area turned off none, presumably (5)
llano – ALL ON, both rev., so none off .. presumably!
7. What’s standard to protect head in Goa, India? (5)
pagri – G(oa) in PAR (standard) + I(ndia). And an &lit.
8. Weasel cat (northern, mouse-coloured) seen in swamp mostly (9)
delundung – N + DUN (mouse-coloured) in DELUG(e) (swamp mostly). A fine word, Delundung, for an elusive mammal akin to a civet cat but unknown to Wikipedia and even google images struggles a bit, too
13. Savour of burning page raised doubt without question in novel (9)
empyreuma –  P(age) + (q)UERY rev., in EMMA, a fine novel. Struggled a bit to parse that one..
15. Pompous nonsense accepted in Ring Cycle (9)
ororotund – ROT in O (ring) + ROUND (cycle)
16. Still eating in the way that is even more barmy than the rest (9)
yeastiest – um.. I see YET, (still) containing ASTIES. That seems to be ST (way) and IE (that is) inside AS (even?) .. I think I must be missing something here! On edit – indeed I did miss something, see Mohn’s comment below
20. Foreign Office pardon, conclusion of politician’s hot air in high places (5)
foehn – FO + EH (pardon?) + (politicia)N. One of a large number of exotic winds that it is useful to know
21. Spenser’s simply uncivilised when unconfined (5)
eathe – (h)EATHE(n) (uncivilised).
23. Indisposed, clutching a metal pot (5)
lotah – A in LOTH (indisposed, in the sense of not disposed to do something)

Author: JerryW

I love The Times crosswords..

2 comments on “Club Monthly 20197 February 2017”

  1. I had YET (Still), around AS (in the way that) + TIES (is even), though it took me a while to parse courtesy of the siren song of ST (way) and IE (that is).

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