ST 4273 (Sun 20 Apr) – O tempora! O mores!

Posted on Categories Daily Cryptic
Solving time: 10:30

A rare gem from the Sunday Times, the like of which crops up about every three to four months. Some inspired clues, very tight wordplay and first class surface readings throughout. I’ll bet a Mars Bar that this was by Tim Moorey [wrong]. A slowish time which would have been much quicker if I’d known either of the phrases at 1ac and 1dn!

* = anagram, “X” = sounds like ‘X’.

Across
1 ARM(C + AND)Y – ‘with’ in this clue is expertly disguised as a link word. I only knew ‘eye candy’ so this was slow to come.
5 EREBUS; (ONE – ON) + REBUS – the Greek god of darkness. Excellent clue.
6 T(A RANT + IS)M – a fitting condition once thought to have been caused by a tarantula bite. TM is transcendental meditation.
11 TEN(E)T
12 RESIT; (TRIES)* – not sure about ‘X to swat’ meaning ‘anagram of X’, as ‘swat’ is only a transitive verb.
13 DES + PER + A + DO
14 ANT + I(THE)SIS – another innocent-looking word (‘the’) which turns out to be a key part of the wordplay.
17 TORC[h]
19 I(R)AN
20 DOWN AT HEEL; (DONE + WEALTH)* – great &lit / double-whammy (© P Biddlecombe).
22 EST. + RANGES
24 PROOF (double definition)
26 O.R. + BIT[ter]
27 TYRANNISE; (NASTY REIGN – G)*
28 E(LE)EVEN
29 DESTINED; (DIETS)* + NED

Down
1 ALTERNATIVE VOTE; (VETO)* – wordplay in the answer. The second word was obvious but I went for ‘transferable’ for the first, until I realised it didn’t fit, and didn’t spot the actual answer until I had most of the letters. Having looked this up, I think ‘alternative vote’ and ‘transferable vote’ are the same thing.
2 MORES, from MORSE – as in O tempora! O mores!. A signature?
3 AN + NO + TA[s]TE
4 DRIED; DR[a]I[n]ED, semi-&lit
6 R + OTTER, &lit – another nice clue.
7 BAN + GALORE
8 SUTTON COLDFIELD; (CLOUDS FLITTED ON)*
9 O + MISSION
15 TRACTABLE; rev. of CART, + TABLE
16 ELONGATE; L in (ONE)*, + GATE
18 STEP ON IT; rev. of (TIN + O + PETS)
21 [p]RATTLE
23 S(PR)EE
25 ON(I)ON – apparently ‘set’ can mean ‘a bulb for planting’, which may be an onion.

3 comments on “ST 4273 (Sun 20 Apr) – O tempora! O mores!”

  1. I’m sorry I missed this one. I was bogged down with the rather difficult Saturday Jumbo so didn’t get round to it. Shame.
  2. I enjoyed this too. I can’t remember much about it except that I too wrote in ‘transferable vote’ except of course I didn’t after about the ‘b’ because it is the wrong number of letters. It was a lot of checking letters before I got to ‘alternative’.

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