Quick Cryptic 2164 by Corelli

Medium difficulty I would say, with some write-ins as well as chewier ones. My knowledge of Italian is based on musical notation and gangster films, so the former was enough for 20 dn. Slowed down by a suicidal determination to crowbar TURPIN into 21ac and USHER somehow into 23ac

1 Alfred’s cooking suddenly burned (6)
FLARED – anagram (‘cooking’) of ALFRED
5 Weekly or monthly, perhaps, obtained larva (6)
MAGGOT – MAG[azine] + GOT
8 Enforce the writer’s model (6)
9 Fresh auction maybe is concerned with small beer (6)
10 Good Polish food (4)
12 Encountered love in Morecambe, maybe, so brilliantly fast! (8)
METEORIC – MET + ERIC [Morecambe] with O [love] inserted
14 Extraordinary fourth stage, in great demand (6-5)
SOUGHT-AFTER – anagram (‘extraordinary’) of FOURTH STAGE
16 Big pile of Oxford University books collected by principal (8)
18 Cockney warms food (4)
19 Some group’s endeavouring to pass to a higher place (6)
UPSEND – hidden word: groUPS ENDeavouring
21 Traveller highwayman initially steals from and beats (6)
23 Guide, increasingly red in the face, I abandoned (6)
RUDDER – RUDDIER minus the I
24 Arrested outlaw after turning over couch (6)
NABBED – BAN backwards + BED
2 Italian wine and meat retailed at first by American company (9)
3 Short public disturbance in S American port (3)
RIO – short for RIOT
4 Vision of 500 — that many sheets? (5)
DREAM – D [500] + REAM [500 sheets]
5 Indian into grammar at Harvard (7)
MARATHA – hidden word: gramMAR AT HArvard. A caste of people from Maharashtra in India
6 Gets a bolt for fixing fuel container (3-6)
GAS-BOTTLE – anagram (‘fixing’) of GETS A BOLT
7 Painting of gorilla oddly missing (3)
OIL – alternate letters of gOrIlLa
11 Burden one dispatched in Buckinghamshire village (6,3)
BOURNE END – anagram (‘dispatched’) of BURDEN ONE. Not sure why we’re supposed to have heard of this place. Maybe the setter lives there.
13 Cross Tiber, rail having been mended (9)
IRRITABLE – anagram (‘mended’) of TIBER RAIL
15 Taking in oxygen, increasingly difficult for squirrel (7)
HOARDER – HARDER with O inside
17 Small number put on weight? Unacceptable! (3,2)
20 More Italian pizza in Umbria — just starters (3)
PIÙ – first letters of  Pizza In Umbria. I’ve added the accent.
22 Kid, one of twenty-four found in chest (3)
RIB – double definition

77 comments on “Quick Cryptic 2164 by Corelli”

  1. Is this the third time this month LAMBRUSCO’s appeared? Anyway, it was a gimme today. BOURNE END sure wasn’t. Morecambe has figured in enough clues that I’ve finally learned; it wasn’t that long ago that he was a NHO. 6:44.

  2. 17 minutes from FOI: FLARED to LOI: RUDDER.
    Favourite THROBS.
    I spotted the hidden Indian from the initial M but waited for all the crossers as I didn’t know the caste.

    1. I didn’t either, but I knew the language, which helped me spot the hidden (something I’m quite poor at).

  3. 9 minutes with only MARATHA unknown but easy enough to spot.

    Corelli usually has a Nina or theme for us but after comparing notes with johninterred all we have been able to come up with so far are MAGGOT and GRUB being related with the latter perhaps connecting with several food and drink references. There’s also a number of double-letters in some of the answers. Topics in the past have ranged from the fairly obvious to the obscure, so If anyone can come up with anything more substantial please let us know. Corelli himself may choose to pop in later and enlighten us – he has done so on previous occasions.

    I think there are four places called BOURNE END, the best known being in Bucks on the Thames. Three others are nearer me, two in Bedfordshire and one in Hertfordshire midway between Berkhamsted and Hemel.

    1. Appropriate Nina leading up to MAGGOT. (If you want to delete this and put it in the blog with spoiler text then go for it.)

        1. Well spotted! It would seem that Meldrew’s fishing lures were closer to the mark that we realised 😂

    2. Jack
      You are quite correct I believe. As a Harpenden resident I get very confused between them all and my Satnav made in Japan won’t help. Our neighbour Joan aka Mrs Eric Morecambe charmingly and diligently judged our jubilee cake bake off. But I still biffed the clue thinking it was something to do with Bay. 25 today so happy. Seems a gentle few days. J

        1. Yes. I’ve been reading the blog for years but found the old Soviet one so difficult to post. But this one’s great. I’m very indebted to you and others. J

  4. 19mins held up by THROBS PIU UPSEND and MARATHA, the last 3 of which are new words to me. I too was looking for ‘Turpin’ to contribute to the outlaw of 24A.

    Satisfying solve in the end.

    Thanks Corelli and Curarist

  5. I found this a bit of a slog and struggled with the anagrams in particular – I even needed most of the checkers for BOURNE END despite being just down the road.
    The word play for LOI PIU was obvious, but it looked so unlikely that it went in very tentatively once RUDDER had revealed itself to me.
    Crossed the line in a sluggish 11.27
    Thanks to Curarist

  6. 46-mins.

    First readthrough of clues gave me RIO, DREAM, OIL, FLARED, UPSEND, EATs, BOURNE-END. And I’d also put COUS for the ending of LAMBRUSCO (haven’t heard that in a decade or so). Spent next 20+ mins predominantly trying to unscramble the SOUGHT-AFTER, IRRITABLE and GAS-BOTTLE anagrams. The latter I had the unparseable GOT-STABLE at one stage.

    Nothing until 29-mins when I spotted GRUB then it was all solved in the remaining 17-mins. Really highlights that when I’ve got a couple of extra checkers in place, I can do these in decent time. Parsed everything except MOUNTAIN.

    Didn’t understand what “Fresh” was doing at the start of RESALE clue other than to confuse me as to what the def’n was. Not helped by reading it as “French auction”!

    LOI METEROIC (always forget to connect Morecambe to Eric)

    Interesting week – 3 solves (27, 37, 46 mins) which I’m pretty happy with.

    Thanks to Corelli and Curarist 🙂

  7. 7:45 but with tangled fingers at 8a. IPOSEE. Grrhhh! Thanks Corelli and Curarist.

  8. Felt rather smug about solving this puzzle relatively quickly, then I realised I had forgotten to go back and check 23, so RUDDERless.
    Anyway I seemed to be on the wavelength today, for a change. BOURNE END sprang to mind, along with LAMBRUSCO. Liked MAGGOT, GRUB, HOARDER, and NABBED among others. NHO the Indian caste but had to be.
    Thanks vm, Curarist.

  9. Not my finest twenty minutes, but arrived quickly at 11dn BOURNE END.

    FOI 2dn LAMBRUSCO !!!
    WOD 20dn PIU – grab a piu!

    As for the Nina we have a collection of lures as used by Gaelic fly fishermen:-The Flared-maggot, the Rudder, the Grub(ber), the Dreamhoarder (Draimhoughda), the ‘Sought After’(sougtaftah), a Not-on!, the ‘Irresistable’ and the Gasbottle aka the ‘Electric Bluebottle’. A.J. Cronin Gone Fishin’

    1. I must admit I wondered if it were 1st April! Never having been a Gaelic fisherman. Still not sure I believe these!

      1. Gosh! There’s obscure … and then there’s Gaelic names of fishing flies.

    2. I like to Google some of the comments on this site to improve my GK. But I’m baffled by your reference to A J Cronin and Gone Fishing. Please can you enlighten me? Is it coincidence that Cronin appears in the main crossword today?

  10. A bit over target again.

    Good puzzle though, a QC that makes you think a bit, without being unduly hard.

    I couldn’t get florid out of my head for red-faced, but RUDDER eventually came to me as my LOI. Like others, NHO MARATHA, but spotted the hidden once I had checkers.

    MOUNTAIN and NABBED had good surfaces.


  11. Classic example of the difference between “solving on the Club” and “just solving”. I was down to the last, the anagram of the unknown village. All checkers present and I could see it was “End” so only three letters to fit in! Clock ticking down to 8 mins.

    Instead of writing out the anagrist and working it out, I panicked to get in under 8 mins and shoved in “Bounds End” (which Google now tells me doesn’t even exist) and hit submit just as I saw that that had given me MOUDTAIN.


    FOI FLARED, COD MAGGOT, time 07:52 but. Can’t spot the Nina.

    Many thanks Corelli and curarist.


  12. A good end to the week for me. I moved steadily around the grid making full use of essential crossers for some of the answers mentioned above. I finally decided to cross my fingers and enter UPSEND at 12.38 and was pleased to see that it is actually a word (has anybody ever used it?).
    Unlike Templar, I am never aware of my time until completion. I don’t respond well to a ticking clock!
    Thanks to Corelli and Curarist. John M.

    1. I never used to be until I started solving through the Crossword Club a week or two ago! It’s stressful!!

  13. This took me into the SCC at just short of 21 minutes, but that did include some time looking for a theme / Nina whilst solving. Very well spotted Horryd if you’re right – none of those lures are known to me, and other than the grub / maggot connection, I could spot no better candidate, so hats off to you. LOI was NABBED, PIU unsure of, LAMBRUSCO slow to come, but very familiar with. Thanks both for another interesting challenge.

  14. I would agree with Curarist as I thought this of medium difficulty. My time of 10.15 was a whisker outside my target. I thought the ‘big pile at Oxford University’ was an oblique reference to the Bodleian, and actually started to write it in before realising it didn’t fit in with 15dn. Never heard of the word PIU and relied on the cryptic. Misread the clue at 5ac as lava and not larva, and was trying to work out why the clue was six letters long to accommodate MAGMA!

  15. DNF today. Just couldn’t get RUDDER for some reason and gave up at the 30 min mark having completed the rest sub-20 – grrrr. NHO MARATHA but spotted the hidden straight away. Major PDM with MOUNTAIN and METEORIC, otherwise seemed fairly straightforward. Liked MAGGOT and METEORIC best. Many thanks to Corelli and Curarist.

  16. 9 mins, last two were maratha (glad it was hidden as couldn’t work out what was going on), and sougtaftah which I’m sure is also in JR Hartley’s book!

    A Levels finish today so might have a drink with my nearly 18 yo.

  17. Quite tricky in places. About 23 mins.

    I live not far from BOURNE END and still needed nearly all the checkers to get it. Has a lovely waterfront onto the Thames.

    Is ‘small’ really necessary to make sense in 17D?

    8A my LOI… I’M = “the writer’s”? I was trying to fit MY.

    Thanks both

    1. I think “the writer’s” can be both the possessive, for which “my” is indeed an alternative, but also “the writer is”, for which “I’m” works.

    2. I would say the ‘small’ is definitely at least desirable in the context of the clue, otherwise you’d be messing about with spurious numerals unnecessarily, rather than realising it was an abbreviation that was needed.

  18. Finished and parsed in 12 minutes, quite a quick time for me. NHO MARATHA but spotted the hidden, so it didn’t hold me up. Entered UPSEND with fingers crossed as I’ve never heard of this as a word. Didn’t realise 14ac was an anagram until I’d entered it from the crossers. No problem with 11dn BOURNE END but thought it was a bit obscure as a place. Everything else fairly straightforward for my second fastest time of the week and a decent day.

    FOI – 1ac FLARED
    LOI – 13dn IRRITABLE
    COD – 9ac RESALE

    Thanks to Corelli and Curarist

  19. A good mix of write-ins and ones that were, shall we say, somewhat more challenging. Nabbed was a typical wrong end of the clue problem for me, and certainly not helped by thinking 13d required a (6,3) answer. . . All sorted in the end, including the token unknown SE town, in what seems a respectable enough 20mins. CoD to 6d, Gas Bottle, for the surface, a nose ahead of 21ac, Throbs. Invariant

  20. 15 mins…

    I enjoyed this and thought there were some lovely clues. As soon as I see Morecambe I think of Eric so 12ac was pretty much a write in. Wasn’t convinced about 19ac “Upsend” as a word – but, if it’s there, it’s there.

    Thought there might be a Nina, didn’t find the Nina, upon reading the blog I would never have found the Nina.

    FOI – 1ac “Flared”
    LOI – 16ac “Mountain”
    COD – 15dn “Hoarder”

    Thanks as usual!

  21. Dream Hoarders: How the American Upper Middle Class Is Leaving Everyone Else in the Dust, Why That Is a Problem, and What to Do About It

    Piu Lambrusco – probably not a good idea

    Impose Resale – story today about a woman who has to sell her Scottish castle over a small debt (Corelli must have had some foresight for that one)

    No, I can’t see a theme either, but I like Meldrew’s suggestions (have you given up on Horryd?).
    I didn’t find this too bad at all and came in at 9 minutes, pretty much on the dot. I did think BOURNE END would give people trouble – it’s not even a town but a village, so I can’t imagine how anyone not from the area is supposed to know it. Very expensive and full of ‘celebrities’ (like many of those Thames-side places). It does sort of follow on from our conversation last week about tautological waterway names though!
    I enjoyed this – some of the trickier vocab was kindly clued (MARATHA, UPSEND), and a lot of the surfaces had me smiling (METEORIC, IRRITATED and NOT ON).
    FOI Impose LOI Resale COD Mountain
    Thanks Corelli and Curarist

    1. BOURNE END is indeed listed as a village but I know of several towns that are smaller. I visited with our small grandchildren only two days ago to have a picnic and feed the ducks. It was buzzing as always. There’s certainly lots of money in the high street!
      For anyone who knows Henley-on-Thames (as in the regatta) think of a slightly smaller version and you will have a good picture of it.

      1. It’s a very long time since I was last there – probably much expanded since my childhood! My more regular Thames-side visits are to see the family in Windsor (not THAT family 😂)

  22. A puzzle where trusting the wordplay got me home. I had heard of Bourne End – I rather sympathise with those who quite reasonably have not – but I did not know Maratha, did not realise Upsend was a real word, and did not expect a full answer in Italian in an English language crossword. Common words in other languages as components of an answer are fair enough as part of the wordplay, but for the answer itself to be in “foreign” is a bit of a stretch I think.

    Still, all done in 11 minutes- and naturally I did not spot the Nina. Many thanks to Curarist for the blog and a good weekend to all.

  23. I was going really well as I entered the SCC with just two to get (MAGGOT and IMPOSE). An alphabet trawl was required for each of these, but the one for IMPOSE inexplicably took 12 minutes. The more I stared at _M_O_E the more I thought the word was unknown to me and that I was going to have to give up. When it finally came I remembered that I have been seriously held up by ‘model’ = POSE on more than one previous occasion. Why can’t I remember such a simple thing?

    Otherwise, the solving processwent really well, despite having NHO MARATHA or PIU and finding it hard to persuade myself that UPSEND is a real word. Total time = 36 minutes.

    Mrs Random finished 10 minutes ahead of me. She would have escaped the SCC had she not been held up by THROBS and RIB. So, situation normal in the Random household.

    Many thanks to Corelli and Curarist.

  24. I DNK either MARATHA or PIU but the wordplay was generous. I wasn’t sure how many would know of BOURNE END. I live in Buckinghamshire but the closest BOURNE END to me is in Hertfordshire. I liked the cluing for MOUNTAIN. My LOI in 8:34 was a biffed and belatedly parsed RESALE.

  25. 7.27 but..

    .. the fat fingered typos are back

    Know Bourne End for some reason but also wanted TURPIN which delayed things in that bottom corner

    Liked FLARED – clever surface

    Thanks Corelli and Curarist

    1. Put us out of our misery please, Captain, I don’t think anyone’s going to get it!

        1. Managed to spread over two days to finish in a cumulative time in excess of 30 hrs which put me outside the doors of the SCC facing a sign “Closed. Reopens Monday”.
          Enjoyed at length. LOI UPENDS.
          Thanks Corelli (very clever Nina), Curarist and all the commenters.

          1. Mrs Random has still to finish two QCs from several weeks ago. They’re filed by the side of her chair, but she finds a different excuse not to complete them each time I remind her. SCC to the nth power!

  26. Pleased to finish after a struggle, since NHO MARATHA, BOURNE END or UPSEND.

  27. 17:51. Many minutes staring at LOI RUDDER before I saw it. I think rudder as guide eluded me and had me looking in wrong directions. Didn’t know BOURNE END, PIU, UPSEND, MARATHA or GAS-BOTTLE but luckily all five fit in nicely anyways. COD to MOUNTAIN. Thanks for explaining Morecambe was Eric ( I only thought it was a bay) and rest of informative blog.

      1. Meldrew – Morecambe in Lancashire is spelt with an A, not an O! Eric Morecambe took his stage name from the town of his birth. Best not confuse everyone 😉

  28. I think Meldrew is guilty of an UPSEND (which spell check doesn’t recognise, and neither do I). I thought it quite a strange puzzle.

    TIME 4:27

  29. I enjoyed the crossword but have not enjoyed the nudge, winks regarding a Nina. There clearly is a Nina, it is well into the day and would have expected someone to have explained it by now in plain language.

  30. Personally I thought this had strange mixture of very good and absolutely dreadful clues – I always assume it is a Nina when they get this bad. Piu, maratha are not QC answers, upsend is not a word that anyone has used since Milton, and I really struggle with I’m for the writer’s in 8a, and rudder for guide.

  31. I’d agree wholeheartedly with Paanliv’s comments above, Ninas seem to spoil a good puzzle. I’d seen both Piu and Maratha, but refrained from putting them in as I thought I’d misunderstood the clues and some proper words would occur if I got some checkers in. Eventually when the checkers arrived, I realised that my first hunches were correct and I wrote them in with a shrug. Generally this felt like a nice puzzle which was let down by those two or three odd words.

  32. Very challenging but also very enjoyable. Relied on the word play for some clues. Back in the SCC after a very good run. Have a good weekend everyone.

  33. First time posting here. Quite enjoyed this. Didn’t time myself but about 15m. Held up on Impose – never spot that I’m/my/me wordplay! And Piu? Not sure about that.

Comments are closed.