Quick Cryptic 375 by Mara

Posted on Categories Quick Cryptic
A gentle offering from Mara today, with a good wodge of simple charades and anagrams.

The puzzle can be found here if the usual channels are unavailable: http://feeds.thetimes.co.uk/timescrossword/20150817/9337/

Definitions are underlined.

1 Shiner‘ in two languages? (6,6)
FRENCH POLISHFRENCH + POLISH (two languages), for the furniture varnish. Speaking of languages, I only recently discovered an astounding feature of Google Translate on my phone – if you point the camera at a piece of foreign text (e.g. a menu), it overlays the camera image with an English translation. Amazing. Back to the subject at hand …
9 Trouble in the past surrounding King George (5)
AGGROAGO (in the past) surrounding GR (King George)
10 Communist police arresting a lamb, perhaps? (3,4)
RED MEATRED (Communist) + MET (police, i.e. Metropolitan Police) around (arresting) A
11 Hapless liberal has not seen script? (7)
BRAILLE – anagram (Hapless) of LIBERAL. For the definition, you need to read “not seen” in an adjectival sense.
12 Host takes me back with cabaret every evening, for starters (5)
EMCEE – reversal (back) of ME, + CEE (cabaret every evening, for starters, i.e. the first letters of “cabaret every evening”). A truly awful-looking word but loved by setters for obvious reasons.
14 Building with a kiln so hot, a strange practice (4-5)
OAST-HOUSE – anagram (strange) of SO HOT A, + USE (practice)
18 Awake, some lacklustre layabout turns over (5)
ALERT – hidden reversal (some … turns over) in lacklusTRE LAyabout
20 Petition thus legal (7)
SOLICITSO (thus) + LICIT (legal)
21 Spanish home, maybe, popular for criminal (7)
VILLAINVILLA (Spanish home, maybe) + IN (popular)
23 Nine drunk around university in a state of boredom (5)
ENNUI – anagram (drunk) of NINE around U (university)
24 Artificial satellite, a section past repairing (5,7)
SPACE STATION – anagram (repairing) of A SECTION PAST. Today, a Japanese spacecraft is scheduled to launch on a mission to carry a number of research satellites to the International Space Station, one of two space stations currently in orbit.
2 Complex procedure to fix poor morale (9)
RIGMAROLERIG (to fix) + anagram (poor) of MORALE
3 Initially not very much Chinese food (7)
NOODLESN (Initially not, i.e. the first letter of “not”) + OODLES (very much). Non-Chinese noodles are, of course, available, though sadly not in Northallerton.
4 Tree trunk hugged by animal lover? (5,8)
HORSE CHESTNUTCHEST (trunk, in the sense of a box) in (hugged by) HORSE (animal) + NUT (lover), for the tree that’s apparently only distantly related to chestnuts
5 Duck story about grandad’s ultimate senior citizen (5)
OLDIEO (Duck, i.e. zero) + LIE (story) about D (grandad’s ultimate, i.e. the last letter of “grandad”). A surface that seems more and more intriguing every time I look at it.
6 Something cold that is keeping cold! (3)
ICEIE (that is) around (keeping) C (cold)
7 Bowler perhaps crimson, showing animosity (6)
HATREDHAT (Bowler perhaps) + RED (crimson). Presumably a cricket-related surface.
8 Label next to cat (5)
TABBYTAB (Label) + BY (next to). You can never have too many cats in a crossword, or in life.
13 Steady growth caught and censored, unfortunately (9)
CRESCENDOC (caught) + anagram (unfortunately) of CENSORED. Referring to volume or intensity.
15 Most unsightly suit, leg needing adjustment (7)
UGLIEST – anagram (needing adjustment) of SUIT LEG
16 Coarse stuff electioneer talked about? (6)
CANVAS – homophone (talked about) of CANVASS (electioneer, as a verb)
17 Second journey for band (5)
STRIPS (Second) + TRIP (journey)
19 Classical English commerce (5)
TRADETRAD (Classical, i.e. short for traditional) + E (English)
22 No end to spring meadow (3)
LEALEA{p} (No end to spring, i.e. “leap” without its last letter)

7 comments on “Quick Cryptic 375 by Mara”

  1. A couple of these slowed me down some: 10ac I figured had to be RED X, and lamb suggested MEAT, but it took me some time to parse that bit (I might add that for American moi, the Met is the NY Metropolitan Opera). 11ac BRAILLE was, for me, anyway, a difficult anagram from ‘liberal’; and come to think of it, braille is visible on the one hand–for the sighted–and all scripts are not seen for the blind. But wotthehell. 7′ on the dot.
  2. 9 minutes. I’m reminded I’m pretty sure we had “lamb” clued as “white meat” or “light meat” once in a 15×15 which caused some controversy, but anyway there was no doubt in my mind today about10ac.
  3. Was going great guns until my last in NOODLES. Only got the answer when realising I had written FRENCH as FRECHH. FRENCH POLISH was my favourite in the first ever quickie I tried, today it was BRAILLE.
  4. Straightforward 5 1/2 minutes for me. Not heard anyone use the word AGGRO for a long time so that made me smile, as did NOODLES and BRAILLE, my clue of the day.
  5. Found this mildly difficult but never got stuck – a steady solve.
    Would never have got Crescendo without the anagram proving it could be nothing else.I liked 23a very much and my LOI was 10a. David
  6. Defeated by 16d. Not heard of a 14a before but it couldn’t be anything else. Particularly enjoyed 12a
  7. Well, if this was a ‘gentle offering ‘ I would hate to come across a hard one. While not impossible, it was challenging enough for a QC. 16d my LOI by a long way. Invariant

Comments are closed.