Jumbo 1225

Posted on Categories Jumbo Cryptic
I found this one something of a slog at the time, with a slew of unknowns and not much in the way of humour, but going through it again there were some deceptive surface readings and interesting usages of deletion indicators. It certainly provided a mental workout both for solving and blogging. I didn’t help myself by not seeing any of the long anagrams until I had several checkers in place.

Definitions are underlined.

* = anagram, dd = double definition, cd = cryptic definition, {} = omission

1 Magic transport needs fourth of combustion chambers to run like clockwork (10)
BROOMSTICK – {com}B{ustion} (fourth of combustion) + ROOMS (chambers) + TICK (to run like clockwork)
6 Soundlessly defying comprehension? (12)
UNFATHOMABLE – kind of an extended definition, where sound is used in the sense of (Chambers) “To measure the depth of”
14 Perhaps excel at making statements extreme (9)
15 Prudish damage to comment, deleting articles (5)
MIMSYM{a}IM (damage) + S{a}Y (comment), both without their articles. According to Chambers, this was influenced by Carroll’s invented word (as seen in “All mimsy were the borogroves” in Jabberwocky) though it’s not clear how, as Humpty Dumpty comments that it means “flimsy and miserable”.
16 Hunting breed incapable of steady gait? (7)
LURCHER – a literal interpretation
17 Repeatedly hit old salts in refuge? (9,4,4)
BATTERSEA DOGS HOMEBATTER (Repeatedly hit) + SEA DOGS (old salts) + HOME (in)
18 Not speaking, I forgot to mention complaint (5)
MUMPSMUM (Not speaking) + PS (I forgot to mention, i.e. the postscript at the end of a letter)
19 Work against a municipal lack of transparency (7)
OPACITYOP (Work) + A + CITY (municipal)
21 Hen scrabbling in grass, ready for mates? (2,4)
ON HEATHEN* in OAT (grass)
22 Some heated argle-bargle over site of capital (8)
BELGRADE – hidden reversed in heatED ARGLE-Bargle. Argle-bargle is apparently an alternative version of argy-bargy – though you don’t need to know this to solve the clue, the presence of such a word does tend to suggest a hidden or anagram.
24 Unwelcome blow for man that may be crowned (7)
DRAUGHT – dd, the second referring to a piece in a game of draughts that reaches the opposite side of the board
26 Region that has nothing against blocking a royal (8)
PROVINCEO (nothing) + V (against), inside PRINCE (a royal)
27 Water regulator favoured to provide motor part (6)
TAPPETTAP (Water regulator) + PET (favoured), to give (Chambers): “A projection that transmits motion from one part of a machine to another by tapping, esp in an internal-combusion engine from the camshaft to the valves”
30 Opinionated medic giving nothing away during broadcast with European (11)
DOCTRINAIREDOCT{o}R (medic giving nothing away) + IN (during) + AIR (broadcast) + E (European)
32 Working at it, cheer up, to improve one’s health (11)
33 Milky preparation or similar to hide second cut? (6,5)
SKINNY LATTESKINNY (similar to hide, i.e. like skin) + LATTE{r} (second cut), for (Chambers): “A drink of latte made with low- or non-fat milk”
35 Manipulation of planimeter’s unaffected by fourth dimension? (11)
SEMPITERNALPLANIMETERS*. Chambers: “(chiefly poetic) Everlasting”, with the definition referring to time being the fourth dimension in concepts such as space-time. For good measure, a planimeter is (Chambers): “An instrument for measuring the area of a plane figure”.
37 Heads off to leave after a beer, which makes sense (6)
INTUIT – {p}INT (a beer) + {q}UIT (to leave)
38 Like a person Scottish philosopher irked in speech (8)
HUMANOID – homophone of HUME (Scottish philosopher) + ANNOYED (irked)
39 Like a ruddy camp fire? (7)
FLAMING – dd (or maybe a triple), the first being (Chambers): “Often used intensively or to express irritation, etc (informal)”, the second being how you would literally describe a (camp) fire. I would have been inclined to say that this was a triple definition, where flaming is a slang expression for being extremely camp, but that doesn’t appear to have made it into any of the main dictionaries yet. However otherwise “camp” isn’t really doing much in the clue.
42 One half abused in US toilet out of service (8)
CIVILIANI (One) + VILI{fied} (half abused), inside CAN (US toilet)
44 Raced and just beaten with unknown standing for the start (6)
ZIPPED – {p}IPPED (just beaten) but with the P (start) replaced by Z (unknown)
46 Good book with a final twist, its first section being trumpery (7)
BIBELOTBIBEL (Good book with a final twist, i.e. BIBLE with the L and E exchanged) + OT (its first section, i.e. the first section of the Bible, i.e. the Old Testament), to give us a word meaning a knick-knack
48 Mock coach admitting own goal (5)
BOGUSBUS (coach) around OG (own goal)
49 Don’t corpse, the casket, fig and a pear decompose? (4,1,8,4)
KEEP A STRAIGHT FACE – (THE CASKET FIG + A PEAR)*, with corpse here meaning (Chambers): “(of an actor on stage) to forget one’s lines, etc, to be incapable of speaking one’s lines because of a sudden attack of hysterical laughter”
51 France possibly bitter about alliance? (7)
ANATOLEALE (bitter) around NATO (alliance), with Anatole France being a 19th/20th century poet/novelist, famous(ish?) for Penguin Island
52 Sharp surge in small fish (5)
SPIKES (small) + PIKE (fish)
53 Not fully getting to grips with things, very short of staff? (3-6)
ONE-HANDED – I think the idea here is that if you aren’t using both hands then you aren’t fully getting to grips with things, plus if you only have one hand (in the sense of worker) then you are very short of staff, with the question mark erasing any quibbles you may have over either of these definitions
54 Ill-advised liaison having new piquancy in part (12)
ENTANGLEMENTN (new) + TANG (piquancy), in ELEMENT (part)
55 Sterile unit fenced off (10)
1 Born high or low, pondered changing sides (4-7)
BLUE-BLOODEDBLUE (low) + B{r}OODED (pondered) with the R (right) replaced by an L (left), i.e. changing sides
2 Surprisingly content to ignore every new music group (5)
3 Promotion of publicly funded entertainment starting three months early? (9)
MARKETING – the start of JUNKETING (publicly funded entertainment) is JUN (June), so three months earlier would give us MAR (March) and hence the answer
4 Revolutionary to run broadcasting company (7)
TROTSKYTROT (to run) + SKY (broadcasting company)
5 Hybrid animal has feline claw shortened (7)
CATTALOCAT (feline) + TALO{n} (claw shortened). Chambers: “A cross between the bison (‘buffalo’) and the domestic cow”, and fortunately not involving cats. A mere 33,500 Google hits for this animal, suggesting its natural habitat can only be Crosswordland.
7 Ordering of pieces from mint is a must for me (11)
NUMISMATIST – (MINT IS A MUST)*, with an extended definition for someone who collects coins
8 Madcap display with tops off carelessly (6)
ANYHOW – {z}ANY (Madcap) + {s}HOW (display)
9 Was a loudmouth Liberal before getting into power? (8)
HOLLEREDL (Liberal) + ERE (before), inside HOLD (power)
10 Jesus follower uplifted youth with spirited stuff, just past two o’clock? (4,9)
MARY MAGDALENE – reversal of LAD (youth) + GAMY (spirited) + RAM (stuff), + ENE (East-north-east, which on a clock dial corresponds to just past two o’clock (67.5° vs 60°))
11 Snake swallowing piece representing half or quarter of artists (7)
BOHEMIABOA (Snake) around HEMI (piece representing half)
12 Hater of Brussels sprouts to start with mushroom, having obsessed about removing cap (11)
EUROSCEPTICS (sprouts to start) + CEP (mushroom), inside {n}EUROTIC (obsessed about removing cap)
13 Suave person who won’t keep your interest without rifling through it (6-4)
SMOOTH-BORESMOOTH (Suave) + BORE (person who won’t keep your interest), to give (Chambers): “(of a firearm) not rifled”, where rifle means (Chambers): “to groove spirally”
20 Section of Norman arch is thrown into disorder? (9)
ANARCHIST – hidden in NormAN ARCH IS Thrown, with the answer an adjective and the “into” in the definition having the sense of “liking”
23 9 in the morning, stopping long speech (8)
SCREAMED – 9D is HOLLERED, and the wordplay is AM (in the morning) inside SCREED (long speech). I only knew SCREED as a long piece of writing but it can be a speech too.
25 A tiny toll from rise of large deer parasite in egg form (6)
TINKLE – reversal of ELK (large deer) + NIT (parasite in egg form). The definition refers to toll in the sense of “for whom the bell tolls”.
26 Publicity favoured pushy salesman’s data, on paper (8)
PRINTOUTPR (Publicity) + IN (favoured) + TOUT (pushy salesman)
28 Promise to fix toilet pan (9)
29 Disagreement on acceptance of a queen’s duty (6)
TARIFFTIFF (Disagreement) around A + R (queen)
31 Newlyweds’ odd utensil born in couple’s being eccentric? (8,5)
RUNCIBLE SPOON – (BORN IN COUPLE’S)*, with a reference to Lear’s The Owl and the Pussycat whose main protagonists, after being wed by a hill-dwelling turkey, “… dined on mince and slices of quince, which they ate with a runcible spoon”. Lear’s sketch of this utensil shows it resembling a ladle, however for some reason modern usage favours (Chambers): “a pickle-fork with broad prongs and one sharp, curved prong”.
33 Charmer, bachelor in art school, that might be handy in a street fight (11)
SWITCHBLADEWITCH (Charmer) + B (bachelor), in SLADE (art school – part of University College London)
34 Opposing discrimination, say, came down on a piece from Opera North (11)
EGALITARIANEG (say) + ALIT (came down) + ARIA (a piece from Opera) + N (North)
35 Perhaps show outrage about popular sportsperson using strong-arm tactics (4-6)
SHOT-PUTTERSPUTTER (Perhaps show outrage) around HOT (popular)
36 Radiant quality of star directed without serious thought (5-6)
LIGHT-HEADEDLIGHT (Radiant quality of star) + HEADED (directed)
40 Financial juggling, random, with good earnings primarily for the bottom line? (9)
ARBITRAGEARBITRARY (random), with GE (good earnings primarily) replacing the RY (bottom line, i.e. the usual abbreviation for railway, appearing at the bottom of the word). Arbitrage involves the exploitation of market inefficiencies via buying/selling in a (usually) short timeframe, which I suppose can be reconciled with the definition.
41 A swift kick to the rear as instruction for RUC? (4-4)
BACK-HEEL – RUC is a reversal of CUR (heel), hence BACK-HEEL is a way to derive RUC. I don’t think that a back-heel necessarily needs to be swift, though it helps the surface.
43 Traveller uttered unfocused angry outburst (7)
VAGRANT – homophone of VAGUE (unfocused), + RANT (angry outburst)
45 Press become tedious, with old content (7)
DRAGOONDRAG ON (become tedious) around O (old), with the definition to be read as a verb
46 Labour’s core began developing plant in Slough? (7)
BOGBEAN – {La}BO{ur} (Labour’s core) + BEGAN*, to give us the marsh (Slough, minus the deceptive capitalisation) plant also known as the buckbean
47 Squirt American uncle that’s been dumped overboard (6)
JETSAMJET (Squirt) + SAM (American uncle)
50 Praise out of place in review of books (5)
AUDIT – {Pl}AUDIT (Praise out of place)

3 comments on “Jumbo 1225”

  1. This was a slog for me, too, but then all the Jumbos are. DNK MIMSY under this def, and waited for all the checkers. Never heard of the Battersea institution, and hesitated between dogs and men’s until I got 13d. DNK ‘corpse’. I actually got RUNCIBLE SPOON without making the Lear connection, which I’d forgotten. Fortunately, we had both CATTALO & SKINNY LATTE fairly recently, although the latte took me forever. COD perhaps to MARKETING.
  2. Thanks – nice to be able to have the parsing for the odd puzzling ones. Linda Lofthouse

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