Quick Cryptic 944 by Flamande

Posted on Categories Quick Cryptic
I enjoyed this despite the ungodly hour. Good mix of clue types, nothing particularly fiendish. Came in at just over 9min. My favourites are 20ac and 15dn. LOI 16ac, for no obvious reason

1 Preserve trunk road around Caribbean island (7)
JAMAICA – JAM (preserve) + AI (road) + CA (circa)
5 Trap feline near church (5)
8 No 1 sign diet at fault? (11)
INDIGESTION – What we call an &lit clue, the whole thing is both cryptic and surface. Anagram (‘at fault’) of NO 1 SIGN DIET. With ‘I’ instead of ‘1’, obviously
10 Fuel that is partly undervalued (4)
DERV – hidden word
11 See a drum beaten with show of restraint (8)
MEASURED – anagram (‘beaten’) of SEE A DRUM
12 Huge numbers of weapons from Cornwall and Devon? (6)
SWARMS – SW (South West) + ARMS
14 Vegetable dish and ham too, served regularly (6)
POTATO – POT (‘dish’) + alternate letters of hAm ToO. Note to ex-Vice President Dan Quayle: it doesn’t need an E on the end
16 I will leave night clothes near entrance to room for someone staying (8)
LINGERER – LINGERIE (‘night clothes’) minus the I, plus R (‘entrance to Room’)
18 Cheer leaders of rubbish team, accepting goalless draw? (4)
ROOT – Leaders of rubbish team are R and T, goalless draw is 0-0, or OO in crosswordland, assemble. To root is to cheer. An yet when they cheer Joe Root by calling his name it sounds like they’re booing. As if cricket wasn’t complicated enough.
20 Reveal terrible pain is constant (11)
EVERLASTING – Nice compound clue. An anagram (‘terrible’) of REVEAL plus STING (‘pain’) all into a nice surface.
22 Suppose one will receive letter from Athens (5)
OPINE – ONE with PI (‘letter from Athens’) inside.
23 Homeless old lady sheltering in barrel (7)
VAGRANT – GRAN (‘old lady’) inside VAT (‘barrel’)

2 Stick offer in as expected, initially (5)
ABIDE – ‘Offer’ is BID, put inside the initials of As Expected.
3 Heading off, pass town in Hampshire (7)
ANDOVER – Remove the first letter (‘heading off’) of HANDOVER
4 Company takes on good employee who’ll play small part (3)
COG – CO (company) + G (good). Why is ‘G’ always ‘good’, does anyone know? Is is something to do with racing?
6 Roadie usually having the last word (5)
ADIEU – another hidden word roADIE Usually.
7 Challenge wrongdoer put on trial (7)
CONTEST – CON (‘wrongdoer’) + TEST
9 Person photographing crocodile? (7)
SNAPPER – double definition
11 Strong wind and cloud over river and a lake (7)
MISTRAL – Know it well. MIST (‘cloud’) + R (‘river’) +A + L (‘lake’)
13 Account‘s dazzling pure wit (5-2)
WRITE-UP – anagram of (‘dazzling’) PURE WIT
15 Line restraining stray dog (7)
TERRIER – ‘Line’ is TIER, stray is ERR assemble. Very nice neat surface. Proof that a really good clue doesn’t have to be difficult.
17 Fresh information about sappers (5)
GREEN – ‘Information’ is GEN, placed around RE (Royal Engineers, or ‘sappers’)
19 Newspaper article following gold mining’s end? (5)
ORGAN – OR (‘gold’) + G (‘mining’s end’) + AN (article)
21 Empty shore near a stretch of water (3)
SEA – Empty shore is SE, add A

20 comments on “Quick Cryptic 944 by Flamande”

  1. At 16 minutes this was my worst solving time since the first week of August when I had two similar timings. Both of those were from very occasional setters (Howzat and Wurm) but Flamande is a regular opponent and I didn’t expect to be stretched today when I saw that name on the screen.

    I wish I could analyse what gave me problems but I can’t, other than to say the clues that delayed me were 1ac, 16ac and 2dn, all of which seem perfectly straightforward now with hindsight.

    Edited at 2017-10-20 06:32 am (UTC)

  2. I can’t remember what slowed me down, but slowed down I was. I’m surprised I still had DERV in my memory, as I only came across it once or maybe twice in 15x15s some time ago. 7:36.
    1. DERV came up in the 15×15 as recently as September 5th, kevin. You contributed that day but didn’t mention the word. Before that it appeared in June, both times as wordplay for DERVISH.
      1. Well, 6 weeks is some time ago. Listen, I’m surprised I still have breakfast in memory.
  3. Got stuck on LINGERER – I have never come across “lingerie” as meaning “nightclothes” before, and “I will leave” led me to think about a word missing ILL rather than I.

    Very nice puzzle though the top half of the grid felt a lot easier than the bottom, for unknown reasons!

    Thanks to Flamande and curarist


  4. I have managed sub 15 minute times on four out of five days this week which is definitely a record for me. (14:27 today). I couldn’t get started at all on the NW corner initially but when I moved towards the right I found I got going. LOI was also Lingerer for me but I have to admit it was my wife who suggested Lingerie as an alternative word for night clothes.
  5. A bad week for me on the QC. Another with one wrong, as I couldn’t quite see 12a and stuck SWORDS in. I knew it was wrong as I hit submit, but the clock was at 9:54 so I did it anyway. Onwards and upwards to the 15 x 15. Thanks Flamande and Curarist
  6. 27:20,with at least 7 mins on LOI, LINGERER. Did not parse at all, so thanks, blogger.

    As soon as I see “Hampshire Town” I always try ANDOVER, Hampshire has many towns but only seem to ever see this one in the crossword.

    OO for goalless was a new one for me.

    COD 11d, MISTRAL

  7. A nice set of clues for a puzzle that I thought was rather harder than usual for Flamande. Finished on JAMAICA/ABIDE, though quite why “Preserve” didn’t immediately suggest jam or marmalade to me I don’t know. COD to 8A for the ingenuity.

    Matthew Booth, the (now retired) South African footballer, was another sportsman for whom it was easy to confuse the crowd’s acclaim for a lengthy booing. G stands for Good when describing the condition of vinyl records, but I suspect there’s probably a more commonplace equivalence than that.

  8. I thought many of the clues were excellent. 22a is a good example of the definition often being the first or last word in the clue. Took a while to get 1a and 2d but finally finished in just under 15 mins. I also managed to complete the main puzzle today so feeling chuffed. Here’s a big BOO to both setter and blogger. Have a nice weekend all
  9. I felt on form today as the top half went in quickly and I finished in 16 minutes. LOI was 18a.
    I thought 16a difficult and a bit misleading as night clothes must be pyjamas which I do not see as synonymous with lingerie. But I was not held up for too long. Opine was also tricky. David
  10. I’ve started these crosswords only a month ago, so …
    I finished in approx. 3hrs across the whole day. For me, it was the correct level of complexity for a Quick Cryptic.
    COD 16a
    LOI 19d (gold is OR, why?)
    11d was a “biff” based on checkers given, but I’d never heard of that word beforehand.
    1. If you see “gold” in a clue, then the answer is highly likely to contain either OR (as explained above by curarist) or AU (the chemical symbol for gold).

      In the right-hand column of this page, there is a section called “Free online editions of UK dictionaries”, which contains links to Oxford, Chambers, and Collins respectively. I use these frequently to check on words or meanings that I don’t know. You can also get apps for all three. I think that Collins tends to be the dictionary used by Times compilers (though there is obviously a lot of commonality between all three).

      Finally, congrats on the completion! Practice, as well as reading the blogs for explanations of ones you couldn’t get or couldn’t understand, will bring your completion times down.

    2. Welcome to our crazy little world!

      I couldn’t actually answer your question about OR so I looked it up. It’s a heraldic term meaning gold or yellow colour. It’s also French for gold, but I suspect that’s not the reason.

      A bit like G for Good above, there are loads of crossword abbreviations whose meaning I know, but whose derivation I don’t.

  11. This may be an old chestnut but can we stop having “old lady “as a clue for Gran ? Grandmothers nowadays need not be old !!
  12. This came a welcome return to an average difficulty puzzle for me, after my struggles over the last couple of days. Enjoyed 18a and the well disguised hidden at 6d. LOI 7d, completed in 17 minutes.
  13. 29 minutes, should have been quicker but stuck for ages on LOI opine. One = one doh!

    Dnk derv.

    COD indigestion or swarms.

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