Quick Cryptic Number 527 by Izetti

A slightly difficult puzzle of the type we’ve come to expect (and, I hope, enjoy) from Izetti. Very precise and misleading, with one or two answers that require complete confidence in having untangled the wordplay correctly. The dog breed did that for me today (my LOI, since I wanted all the checkers before guessing and then looking it up!). A nice balance of clues and devices, too, with one more homophone than usual.

My CsOD to the pair at 17.

Definitions underlined.

1 Brightness of girl embracing loveless idiot (8)
LUCIDITY – LUCY (girl) surrounding (embracing) IDIoT (without the O, love-less).
5 Injury sending member to hospital (4)
HARM – ARM (member) next to H (hospital).
9 Sound of large mammals in the country (5)
WALES – homophone of (sound of) “whales” (large mammals).
10 Dance with nothing on? That’s swell! (7)
BALLOON – BALL (dance) with O (nothing) and ON.
11 Little mischief selfish? Not entirely (3)
ELF – hidden in (not entirely) sELFish.
12 Shared communication systema political policy? (5,4)
PARTY LINE – double definition.
13 Possible wearer of leather jacket in this chair? (6)
ROCKER – double definition.
15 Messengers set to put in half of answer (6)
ANGELS – GEL (set) put inside half of ANSwer.
17 Wide-ranging alarm when old male beast is trapped (9)
PANORAMIC – PANIC (alarm), with O (old) and RAM (male beast) inside (trapped).
19 Not a word from this parent? (3)
MUM – double definition.
20 Associate seen as ‘catch’ on reflection, right? (7)
PARTNER – ENTRAP (catch) reversed (on reflection) and R (right).
21 Toad’s friend is irritable (5)
RATTY – double definition.
22 Part to go round audibly (4)
ROLE – homophone of (audibly) “roll” (to go round).
23 Having lots of free time and terribly idle, certain to be hiding (8)
LEISURED – anagram of (terribly) IDLE containing (hiding) SURE (certain).
1 Vulgar attire that a motorist sets off in (3,4)
LOW GEAR – LOW (vulgar) and GEAR (attire).
2 Muslim leader in American state briefly (5)
CALIF – shortened (briefly) CALIFornia (American state).
3 Nasty spider in a gap — going down the plughole? (12)
DISAPPEARING – anagram of (nasty) SPIDER IN GAP.
4 Row around bend initially in river (5)
TIBER – TIER (row) around first letter of (initially) Bend.
6 Surprisingly, age is no worry (7)
AGONISE – anagram of (surprisingly) AGE IS NO.
7 Meat chopped up and cold, in pit (5)
MINCE – C (cold) in MINE (pit).
8 Sporting characters? Many are in suits (7,5)
PLAYING CARDS – PLAYING (sporting) and CARDS (characters).
14 Restraint of one opposing monster endlessly (7)
CONTROL – CON (one opposing) and TROLl (monster) without the final letter (endlessly).
16 Dog for breaking up demo, say (7)
SAMOYED – anagram of (breaking up) DEMO SAY.
17 Publication offers worthless writing with little hesitation (5)
PAPER – PAP (worthless writing) with ER (little hesitation).
18 Woman, one crushed by horse (5)
MARIE – I (one) inside (crushed by) MARE (horse).
19 19 across‘s half-hearted affair (5)
MATER – MATtER (affair) losing one of its middle pair (half-hearted). The definition here refers to the answer at 19ac.

13 comments on “Quick Cryptic Number 527 by Izetti”

  1. Yes, back to target 10 minutes + 4 for the second time this week and it’s only Wednesday! Still it’s nice to have Izetti back with us for the first time in a month (#507 17 February).

    I don’t know that there was anything here that, on reflection, was particularly difficult apart from 16dn if (like me) one didn’t happen to know the word, but more generally many of the answers failed to leap out at me so I kept hopping around the grid looking for new toe-holds, and that always eats up solving time. I suppose my ignorance the dog was my own problem but it’s yet another example of a less than familiar foreign word being clued as an anagram which I have mentioned before as something I don’t much care for. It’s no big deal though. I welcome the occasional Izetti challenge and long may it continue.

    Edited at 2016-03-16 06:10 am (UTC)

  2. A little under 8 minutes for this neat offering. Like I expect many others, I was unfamiliar with the dog, and crossed my fingers that the vowels would fall right. OGRE as well as TROLL is worth watching out for when we get a ‘monster’.

    Thanks for the comprehensive blog, William, but we are missing 23 across!

    1. Thanks both! I’m going to blame being in a rush, as usual.

      The blog’s updated for completeness.

  3. 23ac: SURE (certain) in *(IDLE) (“terribly idle”) = LEISURED “having lots of free time”
  4. Found this hard going. For me, every one felt like a bit of a wrestle, but when solved felt like me being dense! 27 mins in total.
  5. The top half went in quite quickly, but then I struggled with the rest. Having a stab at ‘rapt’ (wrapped) for 22ac certainly didn’t help the SW corner, and resulted in me crawling over the finish line just over the hour. Invariant
  6. Tough but good puzzle. I did know the dog but came to a halt with about a quarter still to go. Put it down for a bit and on return the rest went in quickly with last in and COD ROCKER.
  7. A difficult one, but I struggled through slowly to finish in 50 minutes, with 16d un-parsed. I used to take a Samoyed for walks but I missed the anagram, as I took “say” to indicate a homophone – a fiendish trap. I’m sure that a few months ago I would have got nowhere with this puzzle, so more thanks to the bloggers and forum members.
  8. I took a bit of time to get going on this one and got very held up by the SW corner, so I put it down for a couple of hours and when I came back saw 17a and the rest followed without too much trouble. LOI 22a. I was also unfamiliar with the dog and took a bit of a punt on the order of the vowels and got lucky. Overall a challenging and enjoyable puzzle.
    1. Likewise to above, many thanks, and could not have done this for most of 2015. Complete and all correct, including translating severe clue into a real dog which I thought I had vaguely heard of! Not even dog tired when finished.
  9. 15a was my undoing…just didn’t get it. No good now saying I should have tumbled it immediately, but thx for the blog that explains how to approach it correctly. Like some others, it took a some reading of the clues until I began to get the wavelength, and then had a smattering of answers to work from. Just under the hour with 15 mins wasted on 15a.
  10. Got just over half, and looking at the answers, don’t think I would have completed had I been given a week.

    But completed the 15×15 (for only the second time, I might add) so if any QC-ers are reading this, they might want to have a go.

  11. A welcome back to Izetti. As usual I looked for the “easier” clues to get a foothold whilst expecting a difficult two or three lurking somewhere. But I knew the dog and for once I did not get stuck on the homophones. After 25 minutes I had two left: 13a and 15a. I now see I got 15a wrong; just did not think of Angels and invented Ansets. David

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