Quick Cryptic 635 by Izetti

Posted on Categories Quick Cryptic
I found this on the whole at the easier end of the difficulty spectrum, with 5D I imagine being the likeliest unknown for solvers (though the wordplay isn’t unhelpful). Based on my previous experiences of this setter in his various guises, I got the sense of him pulling his punches a little, perhaps as a kindly nod to those of us currently forsaking sleep in favour of following the Olympics. Thanks, Izetti.

The puzzle can be found here if the usual channels are unavailable: http://feeds.thetimes.co.uk/puzzles/crossword/20160815/17834/

Definitions are underlined.

1 Bishop leads the way with team making attack (9)
BROADSIDEB (Bishop) + ROAD (the way) + SIDE (team)
6 Mark and little Dorothy (3)
DOT – double definition, the second being one of several diminutives of the name Dorothy
8 Seats in group by river (7)
SETTEESSET (group) + TEES (river, probably England’s greatest)
9 Name given to wild party bird (5)
RAVENN (Name) after RAVE (wild party). Owl is to parliament as raven is to unkindness.
10 Courage shown by a sort of batsman — one may raise a cap (6-6)
BOTTLE-OPENERBOTTLE (Courage) + OPENER (a sort of batsman)
12 In good health in spring (4)
WELL – double definition
13 Beloved daughter given attention (4)
DEARD (daughter) + EAR (attention)
17 Bad giant’s action is hostile (12)
20 A fool attached to a girl (5)
ANITAA + NIT (fool) + A
21 Chum in a biblical city who does something for nothing? (7)
AMATEURMATE (Chum) in A + UR (biblical city, whose frequent appearances in puzzles give it a good claim to being the capital of Crosswordland)
23 Consume beef, say, having disposed of starter (3)
EAT – {m}EAT (beef, say, having disposed of starter, i.e. the word “meat” without its first letter)
24 The ado he’d stirred up, being impetuous (9)
HOTHEADED – anagram of (stirred up) THE ADO HE’D
1 Top footballer of yesteryear (4)
BEST – double definition, the second referring to the late Man Utd winger George BEST
2 Result published — draw nigh (7)
OUTCOMEOUT (published) + COME (draw nigh)
3 Colour to fade reportedly (3)
DYE – homophone (reportedly) of DIE (to fade)
4 Matters for debate in periodical publications (6)
ISSUES – double definition
5 EU with final message on fateful day for famous Greek (9)
EURIPIDESEU + RIP (final message) + IDES (fateful day, perhaps best known from Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar: “Beware the Ides of March”), to give the ancient Greek tragedian responsible for (among others) Electra and Orestes. For the lowbrow among us, possibly more famous for his role in the classical tailoring joke that centres around punning pronunciations of himself and (the) Eumenides. If you exclude the asteroid named after him, he has about the same number of Google hits as George Best.
6 Little boy about four finds bed (5)
DIVANDAN (Little boy) about IV (four, in Roman numerals)
7 Occupation of a number on northern river (6)
TENURETEN (a number) + URE (northern river, i.e. the river that flows through Wensleydale)
11 Communications system that could be great help (9)
TELEGRAPH – anagram of (that could be) GREAT HELP
14 Flavouring being a requirement is added in (7)
ANISEEDA + NEED (requirement), with IS added in
15 Fellow taking time to run (6)
MANAGEMAN (Fellow) + AGE (time)
16 Trendy female performance, to tell the truth (2,4)
IN FACTIN (Trendy) + F (female) + ACT (performance)
18 Maybe Oliver‘s turn (5)
TWIST – double definition, the first referring to the Dickens character Oliver TWIST
19 Stimulus quietly provided with stick (4)
PRODP (quietly) + ROD (stick)
22 Beast taking odd bits from apple (3)
APE – odd-numbered letters (odd bits) of ApPlE

24 comments on “Quick Cryptic 635 by Izetti”

  1. I never notice who’s the setter, so I don’t know if this is easy for an Izetti, but it definitely felt easy. Although having said that, I was lucky that OPENER figured in a recent (Sunday?) cryptic (where I failed to solve it). I didn’t know of BEST (Grace being the only cricketer I’ve heard of) and first thought of ‘Bean’, until I got the S. Biffed EURIPIDES once I saw the RIP. 3:48.
  2. 7 minutes for this one and I’d agree it’s a bit on the easier side for an Izetti offering, not that I’m complaining. I’d also agree that EURIPIDES is the answer most likely to cause problems but the wordplay was inventive and possibly quite helpful; I liked “final message” for RIP.
  3. Kevin how did 1dn George Best pass you by!? He was the the fifth Beatle! You really should get out more often. Pele’s (Brazilian) favourite footballer.

    18 dn Oliver Twist never heard of him!!

    I think the 5dn trousers belonged to Frankie Howerd or Ken Williams.

    7.42 LOI 8ac SETTEES

    horryd Shanghai

    1. You mean Pete? He was the fourth, Ringo being the fifth. Anyway, I didn’t miss George; I’ve never missed any cricketer, never will.
  4. 10 minutes here. All good fun.
    So let’s get this clear – did Euripides play football or cricket? 😏
  5. … is of average difficulty assuming you have the required general knowledge. Definitely worth a shot.
  6. In an era of hackers, the brilliant Best stood, or rather ran, supreme. 4’10” today. There may be different views about today’s 15×15, but it’s always worth a go. Thanks Izetti and mohn.
  7. If I hadn’t spent time trying to put the letter ‘t’ into 15d and ‘pal’ into 21a I would probably been on for a record as most of the rest seemed to just slip in nicely.
    Can I just take a moment to thank this august community. On Friday I finally achieved my long held aim of completing a Times 15×15 without resorting to the type of aids which I consider as cheating. I would never have been able to do that without the help you provide on a daily basis for how to go about answering clues and encouragement to keep going when it gets hard. It may have taken me about three hours but I got there in the end. My mum used to do the Times crossword daily when I was a child and I was always in such awe of her ability to do so. Doing it once on an easy day still leaves me some way to go to emulate her, but it’s a start.
    1. Hearty congrats, ant45! Half the difficulty is in believing one can do it and now that you’re over the first hurdle it will get easier. But don’t be put off by setbacks as we all have difficult days or clues that just won’t be solved.
    2. Well done Ant. I can still remember the time when I was fourteen and completed a crossword (in another paper) after my father laughed at the idea that I could do it. Onwards and upwards!
      1. Thank you both. I’ll have another go today. The blogger suggests it is relatively easy but I will make my own judgement on that!
        1. I didn’t find today’s 15×15 as easy as many others. In fact it was a technical DNF (Did Not Finish) for me as I was stumped by 17ac and needed aids to complete it.
      2. Thank you both. I’ll have another go today. The blogger suggests it is relatively easy but I will make my own judgement on that!
    3. Well done! Completing the main cryptic for the first time is a major stepping stone on the way to completing it once a week then once every few days and then eventually you’ll be doing it every day. As long as you keep attempting the puzzles and then reading the blog to understand the parsing of the clues you couldn’t solve or got wrong, then you won’t fail to improve.

      One thing to remember is that the bloggers for the main cryptic are usually blogging with experienced solvers in mind, so what might be described there as “relatively easy” will probably be somewhat harder than you might think from that description! Though it’s good for your experience to try ALL the puzzles, regardless of difficulty, I do appreciate that it can be disheartening to attempt a puzzle described as “easy” that turns out to be a right stinker for your solving level. But if that happens, you just need to get back in the saddle. It’s all part of the journey.

      1. Don’t worry – I am under no false illusions about how different people rate the difficulty. I have had a go at many 15 by 15s, usually when others have suggested they are relatively straightforward and my success rate has varied from not even getting started to doing all but two – up until Friday. I’m not sure I’m going to manage once a week yet but …..
        Thanks for the encouragement.
  8. Good fun and about average for me, which probably means at the easier end of the scale for an Izetti. Did enjoy bottle opener with the allusion to cricket and raising a cap. Top footballer = Best is an old favourite
  9. Managed to rattle through this in just over 30 minutes, with 3 or 4 of those on LOI Tenure – I was trying to fit NR in after Ten to no avail. I think 14d was my favourite, though I did enjoy 10ac as well. My thanks to Izetti for a gentle enough start to the week. Invariant
    1. Sometimes “helpful” extra words in the clue can actually end up being simply confusing, e.g. “northern river” could either literally mean a northern river (as in this case) or it could be N + a river or even (as you were trying) just NR. To further confuse things, we had TEES indicated simply via “river” in 8A – I would guess the URE is much less well-known than the TEES, so having “northern” as part of the URE description probably didn’t help anyone whereas adding “northern” to the TEES description would have pointed people in the right geographical direction. All valid weapons in the setter’s arsenal, though!
      1. Indeed, and don’t get me started on the flower plant/river conundrum! I admit I had to check that Ure was a river, even though I’m married to a Yorkshire girl, but it had to be in order to fit the clue. Hard but fair is always the maxim with Izetti. Invariant
  10. I’d mirror the comments above that this was decidedly gentle b Izetti’s standards and I completed it in 15 minutes. My only hold up was trying to spell 17a incorrectly (starting anti rather than anta for some reason). Fortunately I studied 5d so had no problems with it. LOI 4d
  11. Nice gentle start to the week except I carelessly put in DIE instead of DYE so fail. Thanks Mohn and Izetti
  12. A help for Crossword solvers is the mnemonic I learnt in geography at school. SUNWACD for the rivers flowing east from the Pennine: Swale, Ure, Nidd, Wharfe, Aire, Calder and Don. It’s surprising how often it’s useful!

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