Saturday Times 26310 (16th Jan)

Posted on Categories Weekend Cryptic
14:10 for this one, but I made the mistake of solving it before my morning coffee, so I started off very sluggishly! I’d guess at 10 mins for the first half, 4 for the second. Things of interest – nice clue to ISHMAEL, probably the best of a week where that answer seemed to appear numerous times; two “dodgy homophones” that require totally different accents – one rhotic and one RP (so hopefully everybody’s happy); a rare cross-referential clue, with ISHMAEL (there he is again) helping out with the anagram at 1ac.

1 Festival 18 came mostly to reform (10)
MICHAELMAS – anagram of ISHMAEL (see 18dn) and CAM(e). Some hate them, but I don’t mind cross-references like this. Some puzzles in the Guardian can get a bit tiresome with cross-refs jumping all over the place, but in moderation it’s fine.
6 Member in state of oblivion, wanting love (4)
LIMB – LIMBO (state of oblivion) minus the O (wanting love).
10 Make rough answer, interrupting my old nurse (7)
COARSEN – A(nswer) inside COR (my) + SEN (old nurse – State Enrolled Nurse, a designation that was replaced in the mid-1990s I believe.
11 West Bank town judge with house to east of Morecambe? (7)
JERICHO – J(udge) + HO(use) to the east of ERIC (Morecambe).
12 Goodwill following female European in lawsuit (9)
AFFECTION – F(ollowing) + F(emale) + E(uropean) inside ACTION (lawsuit).
13 Governess (and more than that) torn apart by news (5)
NANNY – NAY (and more than that) around NN (news).
14 Container at edge of a large waterway (5)
CANAL – CAN (container) + A + L(arge).
15 Be more than unacceptable, having less feeling (9)
OUTNUMBER – OUT (unacceptable) + NUMBER (having less feeling).
17 Leisurely hour overlooking ring in ruined complex (9)
UNHURRIED – HUR (hour minus the O) inside (ruined)*.
20 Workers’ association — leaders of left in paint plant (5)
TULIP – TU (Trade Union, workers’ association) + first letters of Left In Paint.
21 Backtracking slightly over one part of skeleton (5)
TIBIA – A BIT (slightly) around I (one), all reversed.
23 Servant may initially help with hot water in Yorkshire (9)
HOUSEMAID – M(ay) + AID (help), next to H(ot) + OUSE (water in Yorkshire).
25 Feeler put out by a northern singer, some say (7)
ANTENNA – A + N(orthern) + TENNA (sounds like “tenor”, in some accents).
26 Lively dance? Way in which dictionary enters name (7)
HOEDOWN – HOW (way in which) around OED (dictionary) + N(ame).
27 Individual on back of sled, taken for a ride (4)
DONE – ONE (individual) after (sle)D.
28 Coward possibly bringing wife in to perform accurately (10)
PLAYWRIGHT – W(ife) inside PLAY RIGHT (perform accurately).

1 Hamish’s surprised expression, dipping into mum’s coffee (5)
MOCHA – OCH (Hamish’s surprised expression) inside MA (mum).
2 In church, make fun of leading singer (9)
CHAFFINCH – IN + CH(urch) after CHAFF (make fun of).
3 Area of France, one toured by gang leader’s girl (6-8)
ALSACE-LORRAINE – ACE (one) inside AL’S (gang leader’s) + LORRAINE (girl).
4 Fast Russian man mostly displaying skin condition (7)
LENTIGO – LENT (fast) + IGO(r) (Russian man mostly).
5 It supplements a formal jacket at a Continental court (7)
ADJUNCT – A + DJ (formal jacket) + UN (a “Continental”) + CT (court).
7 Like some old Peruvians putting bill up in lodging-place? (5)
INCAN – AC (bill) reversed inside INN (lodging-place).
8 Practical joke sending up, eg, Labour blunder? (5-4)
BOOBY-TRAP – PARTY (e.g. Labour) + BOOB (blunder).
9 Be last to raise specific flightless bird, say (5,2,3,4)
BRING UP THE REAR – BRING UP (raise) + sounds like “the rhea” (specific flightless bird). A very different (and more common) accent than the previous homophone!
14 Square, perhaps, to woo detectives (9)
COURTYARD – COURT (to woo) + YARD (detectives).
16 Politicians go head to head on key branch of Aussie river (9)
BILLABONG – LIB/LAB (politicians going “head-to-head”) + ON + G (key).
18 Outcast from state replacing one monarch with another? (7)
ISHMAEL – ISRAEL (state) with HM (Her Majesty) replacing R (Regina).
19 Intrepid woman youth leader that’s revolting at heart? (7)
DOUGHTY – DOT (woman) + Y(outh) around UGH (that’s revolting).
22 Stick to orange at first in bar (5)
BATON – T(o) + O(range) inside BAN (bar).
24 Hit roof, seeing cake spelt in American way (5)
DONUT – “DO NUT” (hit roof – and with good reason!)

15 comments on “Saturday Times 26310 (16th Jan)”

  1. No doubt everyone will be happy Andy, unless (more likely) everyone is unhappy.
    But I enjoyed this crossword, the past few weeks have seen exceptionally good crosswords.
    Not previously heard of lentigo, as a posy word for freckle.
  2. Yes, very nice puzzle indeed. Not particularly noteworthy except for Magoo sitting on p9 of the Club board thanks to the neutrino brigade (how long before they take over completely?) and 2 idiots on the Forum acting up – yes they got a smack from Nanny (aka me). When I say it was nothing special that’s not damning it at all, it’s just that I wonder if we’re getting a bit spoiled because I agree with Jerry that we’ve had some really first rate ones lately. Howling blizzard outside our windows on NYC’s UES and my elder daughter and her husband left for Jamaica yesterday afternoon leaving us with their 2 little boys. How’s that for timing. 14.32
    1. Hi Olivia

      I don’t agree (and never have) about neutrinos. If you can tell me what rule they are breaking, maybe I will join you in condemning them. but they are not breaking any. The worst you can say is they prefer typing speed to solving speed.. but i have never been able to get excited about speed.

      please keep us posted about the weather! so much better to get firdt hand reports

      Edited at 2016-01-23 06:41 pm (UTC)

  3. 12:06. Straightforward stuff, not much to say. No problem with the homophones.
    I just had to go and look at the forum to see what two idiots being smacked by the Nanny looked like – good for you Olivia. All the best for surviving the hardship of the next couple days: it sounds like it’s going to be something of an ordeal for you guys. And the blizzard won’t be much fun either.
  4. For 18D you probably meant,
    “… with R replaced by HM.”

    Hope all are safe on the eastern seaboard.

  5. It’s time to get over Hamish and Jock and rediscover Scot. Nobody offended, you see. Why “Aussie”? Setter trying too hard, perhaps.
    1. Setter is flagging the “foreign” word. Same reason there’s “French” when you could describe Alsace-Lorraine as an unqualified region.
      21 minutes, unable to parse the RHEA, but thanks to crosswords got the LENTIGO, COWARD, OUSE and CHAFFINCH with barely a pause, all unknown 8 years ago. Nice crossword but I’m not a fan of random names: girl = LORRAINE, woman = DOT, Russian = IGOR, etc.
  6. Polished this off in a mere 55 minutes.

    Am I the only one disappointed though by 3d where girl = Lorraine was the whole part of the answer.

    Didn’t seem very cryptic.

    That gripe aside I enjoyed this.

  7. I was surprised at how fast I did this; unheard of for me, for a Saturday (although it was heard of yesterday, too). I’m not a fan of cross-referencing clues, but in any case I think it’s a bit much to have 1across referring to a clue that most solvers will not have reached yet. 3d biffed from enumeration; there may be other appropriately hyphenated French areas, but fortunately for me, I don’t know any. 16d my COD, although I only solved it post-biff.
  8. Went quickly here, too, after I sorted out a couple bits of Britusages I should know better (chaff, donut as a cake, Eric Morecambe). I had exactly Andy’s thought regarding the cross reference – I don’t mind every once in a while, but don’t like it when the entire puzzle goes back and forth. I do, however, rather prefer cross references to be definitions rather than anagrams.
    And, I still don’t understand “ALS” as Gang Leaders, what am I missing?

    Edited at 2016-01-24 03:52 pm (UTC)

    1. I don’t have the puzzle to hand, but AL (as in Capone) is used (overmuch, some would say) for ‘gangster’.
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