Quick Cryptic 812 by Hurley

A pleasant, relatively straightforward puzzle from Hurley today. Nothing particularly tricky and not much general knowledge required, although a basic familiarity with rugby positions will help with 13d.

Took me a while to spot what was going on in 19ac as the clue was nicely constructed to lead the unwary (such as me) up various garden paths.

Thanks very much to our setter.

Definitions underlined: DD = double definition: anagrams indicated by *(–): omitted letters indicated by {-}

1 Groups of pupils on top floor? They’re highly ranked (5,7)
UPPER CLASSES – DD, the first being pleasantly cryptic
9 Section of kangaroo’s trusted sleeping place (5)
ROOST – Hidden in (section of) kangaROOS Trusted
10 Move faster than exhausted dad near church (7)
OUTPACE – OUT (exhausted) + PA (dad) + CE (church – of England)
11 Release showing prescribed charge to cross river (3,4)
SET FREE – SET FEE (prescribed charge) goes around (to cross) R (river)
12 External route revised (5)
OUTER – *(ROUTE) with “revised” signalling the anagram
13 This guy could become almost radiant (6)
ADRIAN – *(RADIAN{t}) – missing it’s T (almost) – with “could become” indicating the anagram
14 Easy catch for model (6)
SITTER – Straightforward DD
17 Italian capitalist? (5)
ROMAN – Cryptic definition based on a ‘capitalist’ being someone from the capital
19 In German a grammar feature involving rearrangement (7)
ANAGRAM – Hidden (indicated by ‘IN’) germAN A GRAMmar
21 Journalists covering Officer Commanding’s method (7)
PROCESS – PRESS (journalists) going around (covering) OC (abbrev. Officer Commanding)
22 One far from wise in Djibouti oddly (5)
IDIOT – Every other letter (oddly) of In DjIbOuTi
23 Without jackets or coats, eldest shiver unfortunately (12)
SHIRTSLEEVED – *(ELDEST SHIVER) with “unfortunately” signalling the anagram
2 University official, expert, on cold hill (7)
PROCTOR – PRO (expert) ‘on’ C (cold) + TOR (hill)
3 Teen entrant I’m playing for fun (13)
ENTERTAINMENT – *(TEEN ENTRANT IM) with “playing” indicating the anagram
4 Lose in court room, small (6)
CLOSET – Put LOSE in CT (abbrev. ‘court’)
5 For cooking, I have a trout: it’s reliable! (13)
AUTHORITATIVE – *(I HAVE A TROUT IT) with “for cooking” pointing to the anagram
6 Well-kept small trading centre (5)
SMART – S (small) + MART (trading centre)
7 Southern judge maybe — a wool-cutter (7)
SHEARER – S (abbrev. Southern) + HEARER (judge, maybe)
8 Flower one gentleman brought up (4)
IRIS – I (one) + SIR reversed (gentleman brought up)
13 Referring to a forward, odious in the extreme (7)
APROPOS – A PROP (a forward – as in the rugby position) + OS (the extremes of OdiouS)
15 Tribune’s unusual machine (7)
TURBINE – *(TRIBUNE) with “unusual” suggesting the anagram
16 Subordinate from Virginia upset girl (6)
VASSAL – VA (abbrev. state of Virginia) + LASS reversed (upset girl)
18 Roam over island for the language? (5)
MAORI – ROAM reversed (over) + I (island)
20 Gosh! Half of that is fiction! (4)
MYTH – MY (gosh!) + half of THat

31 comments on “Quick Cryptic 812 by Hurley”

  1. Fortunately for me, ‘prop’ came up recently, or 13d would have taken me much longer. ADRIAN was my LOI–spent too long thinking HE would be in there–and got the Unlucky sign. Went over the grid looking for a typo, then thought about SITTER–I wasn’t familiar with the ‘easy catch’ meaning, but couldn’t think of anything better–then finally–finally–realized that ‘shirtsleeves’ was wrong. A lot of time wasted for a 9:17.
  2. I set off quickly but was held up by AUTHORITATIVE, finishing in 9:27 after grabbing a sheet of paper and a pen. I was surprised that SHIRTSLEEVED wasn’t two words or hyphenated. Otherwise a nice puzzle. Thanks Hurley and Nick.
  3. I was a bit slow, though it wasn’t a real toughie. Nice of Hurley to namecheck me, though he seems ambivalent about whether I’m 6dn or 22ac…
  4. Apologies for bothering you here but is anyone else having a problem using the pdf reference (provided with today’s crossword)?
    Or is it just me?
      1. Sorry if I wasn’t clear. I see the http link in the text above today’s (1960 vintage) crossword but it doesn’t respond with 26703. In fact, it doesn’t respond at all. Is there another way of getting to it? Usually the competition crosswords are in PDFs form looking as thought they’re cut and paste from the paper. Thanks for any help.
  5. Around 30 minutes with only 14a left.

    However I had spelt 5d as authoratative so was left with _A_T_R and couldn’t come up with anything equating to easy/model.

    After amending the A to an I sitter was easy!
    So prob more like an hour.

    COD 19a.

    Edited at 2017-04-19 07:07 am (UTC)

  6. I’m doing this online on the times app- 15 down will not add to the grid so I can’t complete it–and is also clued with 9 instead of 7 letters!! Anyone else have that issue?
    1. Yep. Deeply frustrating! Especially as I was heading for a PB. Or so I fondly believe….

      1. My problem also but I had an error Airman instead of Adrian and so I would not have made it anyway.
    2. Yes, exactly the same problem – very frustrating, particularly as every time I tried to select 15d to enter the obvious answer (despite the wrong number of letters being given) the glitch threw me out of the paper completely.
    3. Yes it should be 7 letters then the answer is simple anagram of tribune is turbine
    4. Oh not just me then! Annoying; every time I selected the clue in order to add the answer the app crashed.
  7. Finished in a comfortable 25 minutes, being slightly slowed down by 13dn. Nothing too tricky here, although I’m unfamiliar with vassal. The clueing was generous, though. Good to be back on track after a few shaky days. Gribb.
  8. On the Times page the entire grid and clues did not appear for seventy seconds but that may be my VPN. Thus my time was just about ten minutes as I finished in 11.10!


    Have a go at today’s 15×15 from 1960 and get an idea of how things were in my day! How’s your Bardspeak?

  9. Slow and steady today, about 40 mins. Seem to do better the earlier in the day I start!
    COD 19a also liked 13d
    Thanks again to Hurley and blog.
  10. Half an hour for me today, so not bad. In my paper, 15d says 9 letters, not 7 – this threw me right off, looking for an extra letter to add to tribune’s…until I actually counted the squares. Grrrr.
    ADRIAN had me foxed, and ANAGRAM took me an unnecessary amount of time. A real ah-ha moment when I finally spotted it!
  11. About 35 mins today, having been held up in the NE (again!) as a result of not seeing 1ac until late on. I was also slow in getting 5d, even though I have come across the phrase ‘authoritative advice’ many times in my working life. Nice mis-direction from Hurley in the letter count for 15d. . . 😊 Invariant
  12. That was a lovely puzzle.
    First time I’ve seen my name as answer! (13ac)
    Thanks to setter & blogger.
  13. That was a lovely puzzle.
    First time I’ve seen my name as answer! (13ac)
    Thanks to setter & blogger.
  14. As our blogger mentioned there was nothing overly difficult today and yet it felt like a bit of a sticky solve, with the SW in particular holding me up. I tried to read too much into 17a and spent a while trying to think of words for free marketeers etc who happened to be Italian. I also chucked an unparsed ‘antonym’ in 15d, which didn’t help matters. Completed in 19 minutes, LOI 13a
  15. I too had the ipad glitch that closed the app if I tried to enter the answer. Gave up after the third time…
    Actual solving time around my average six minutes, so nothing of great note other than my usual grumble at the use of a random forename – apologies to all the Adrians out there. Why do it? Half a dozen or more perfectly good words would fit with the checkers. Rant over.
  16. I really enjoyed that one, lots of clues that draw a chuckle or an appreciative nod as the penny dropped. (Nothing audible, obviously. I’m sitting on the train home and must not break the Trappist vows.).

    Thanks to Hurley and the blogger.


  17. A late post but did swimmingly until the SW. Failed on 13a. Anyone else think about 17a in terms of classical columns? Doric, Ionic and Roman etc? Or just me?
  18. I found this really enjoyable although I got hung up on 5dn for an age to finish.

    Couldn’t understand the parsing for 19ac at first. I presumed it was the German for “in” with a feature of grammar = “gram”…but “an” in German is primarily “at” so it didn’t make sense. It was only until I read this blog that I saw it was actually a hidden word…if this was misdirection it was very good.

    15dn also threw me with the wrong number of letters shown in the paper version.

    FOI was 9ac and COD 13dn

    Auf wiedersehen!


  19. Returning late from a reunion with former colleagues.
    This took me 17 minutes. Needed to jump round the grid at first but nothing too difficult.
    Felt the Adrian clue (LOI) was a bit below normal standards. Liked 13d. David
  20. A late post but did swimmingly until the SW. Failed on 13a. Anyone else think about 17a in terms of classical columns? Doric, Ionic and Roman etc? Or just me?

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