Sunday Times 4832 by Jeff Pearce

7:34. No problems this week: nothing too obscure in either definitions or wordplay, the odd minor query here and there but a fun puzzle with some nice touches.

Definitions are underlined, anagrams indicated like (THIS)*, anagram indicators like this.

1 Is one at Billingsgate to get such after 27?
CHEAPSKATE – CD. Because if you were a CHEAPSKATE you might buy CHEAP SKATE that’s past its SELL-BY DATE at Billingsgate fish market.
6 Some fantastic wine
ASTI – contained in ‘fantastic’.
9 Peruvians once home get lots of money
INCAS – IN, CASh. I thought at first that this needed to be ‘gets’ for the wordplay to work, but if you think of ‘get’ as an instruction to the solver with no connection to the Peruvians it works OK.
10 Belittle lad with one good grade
DENIGRATE – DEN, I, G, RATE. For me DEN is less lad and more evil east-end landlord, but…
12 Ride posh car to Ascot — travelling with royalty
14 Once more found wagon capsized in long grass
RETRACED – reversal of CART in REED.
15 University chief backing brilliant work in Latin
UTOPIA – U, TOP, reversal of AI.
17 Old chief died leading kingdom
DOMAIN – O, MAIN preceded by D.
19 Good shot behind farm building bags large kind of goose
21 Rehoboam carries good book
SONG OF SOLOMON – before he was a large bottle of wine, Reheboam was the SON OF SOLOMON. Insert G.
24 Finally ruins ragout with an awfully bitter substance
ANGOSTURA – (ruinS, RAGOUT, AN)*. The aromatic bitter bark from trees of the family Rutaceae, of course. Also a cocktail ingredient.
25 Scoop on a boat contains small plant
26 Unlit rescue vessel behind dam
DARK – D, ARK. I don’t remember seeing D for ‘dam’ before. It’s in Collins, and it’s used in pedigrees: D for dam, S for sire.
27 When beastly Del might be rotten
SELL-BY DATE – (BEASTLY DEL)*. Not sure how this is supposed to work as a definition, other than very loosely. Del isn’t a food, and SELL-BY DATEs don’t really apply to Peckham wide-boys. Oh well, it’s clear what is intended and the surface works.

1 Shorten intro to Catch 22
CLIP – Catch, LIP. Because 22 is SAUCE.
2 1D only contains rear view of actor
EXCERPT – EXCE(actoR)PT. I’m sure I’m not alone in failing to realise for some time that it was 1D and not ID. A rather naughty trick!
3 After surgery lips are initially luminous — becoming yellow
4 Almost swim under anchor to get fishy meal
KEDGEREE – KEDGE, REEl. I think this is swim and reel in the sense of being dizzy.
5 Clobber group of workers going to French city endlessly
7 Place with vermin about is a new business
START-UP – reversal of PUT, RATS.
8 What one on bender at one could be later?
INEBRIATED – I, (BENDER AT I)*. Very nearly &Lit, or &Lit if you think ‘later’ can form part of the anagrind.
11 A gunboat may be travelling around an American naval base
GUANTANAMO BAY – (A GUNBOAT MAY BE)*. As pointed out by anon below, this is rubbish. There is clearly no E in GUANTANAMO BAY. Actually it’s (A GUNBOAT MAY)* containing AN. This makes the word ‘be’ a bit awkward: to make the clue work I have to read it in a pirate voice. All those of you who failed to spot this – ahem – deliberate error see me after class.
13 Cheeses cut by daughter — and nuts cracked by one for wedding guest
16 Game some shops kept under cover
PALL-MALL – PALL (cover), MALL. A game I had only vaguely heard of, but PALL seemed the obvious thing to put before MALL.
18 Mark’s fury about a boss
20 On top of chimney Santa broke a game
CANASTA – Chimney, (SANTA)*, A.
22 Condiment well spoken of
SAUCE – sounds like ‘source’.
23 Left snooker club without tip

27 comments on “Sunday Times 4832 by Jeff Pearce”

  1. This was a bit chewier than many of Jeff’s. I biffed 12ac and 2d. COD to EXCERPT (I was lucky to read ‘1D’ correctly at the start, although it was still my 2d to LOI). PALL MALL the street was named after the game. A bit odd that ‘game’ is the definition in two clues.
  2. ….and gave up after 12 minutes, resorting to aids to get CHEAPSKATE, which then led me to 2/4D.

    TIME N/A

  3. The def. in 27ac is presumably intended to be the whole clue, ie an &lit. It doesn’t work for me, most especially because a sell-by date means what it says so the product in question is highly unlikely to be rotten, which would make it unsaleable .. the setter seems to have confused it with a use-by date which is entirely different and has legal standing, unlike a s-b date which is just a suggestion to the retailer
    1. Not to mention the fact that most food is highly unlikely to be rotten by its use-by date.
  4. Every Day, ‘Our Tune’ of my first girl friend and me, though its promise was never quite fulfilled. I still play Buddy when I’m feeling nostalgic. The ROLLER COASTER was the tamest of the old wooden roller coaster rides at Blackpool Pleasure Beach. If not up with The Big One, at 21 minutes I was more at Grand National speed on this one, still the best ride on the park. COD to SONG OF SOLOMON, with the specialist knowledge required right up my street. Enjoyed this as you can tell, although SELL BY DATE doesn’t work, as has been noted. Thank you K and Jeff.

    Edited at 2019-01-13 09:39 am (UTC)

  5. This was an enjoyable puzzle but I simply could not get 1a. I knew Billingsgate was a fish market but could not see why anyone would want fish past their sell by date -even if they are cheap. Also failed to get 1d and 2d.
    I was reminded of the gunner, a drink which became fashionable in golf clubs after the drink-drive laws were tightened:a gunner consists of equal parts ginger beer (or lemonade) and ginger ale with a dash of Angostura bitters and sometimes a measure of lime cordial or lemon juice. It is regarded as a non-alcoholic drink, although Angostura bitters is 44.7% alcohol by volume.
    Cheers -sorry Slainte. David
    1. I would happily eat fish past its SELL-BY DATE if it smelled OK. On the other hand I have thrown away plenty of fish that wasn’t, because it didn’t.
  6. Enjoyable puzzle. I’d not heard of a Barnacle goose. Nor did I know who Rehoboam was. Solomon: A divisive judge who had some bottle as a father.

    COD: Utopia.

    Edited at 2019-01-13 10:22 am (UTC)

  7. I’d written exactly that point on my print-out but forgot to consult it when posting earlier this morning, so I’m pleased to see it very well-made. I also forgot to say that I have not come across PALL meaning a cover before.
    1. I’m sure you must have encountered it used figuratively in expressions like ‘pall of smoke/gloom’.
      1. Yes, probably, and I can hear in my head the expression ‘covered in a pall of smoke’ but I don’t think that ‘pall’ and ‘cover’ have ever registered in my brain as synonyms.
        1. The pall is the (white symbolising baptism) cloth that covers the coffin during many Christian funerals.
          GH, Queensland
  8. I enjoyed this puzzle. I didn’t worry too much over SELL-BY DATE as it was clear from the checkers and surface what was wanted. Didn’t know of Rehoboam, but knew Jeroboam and liked the clue. Also didn’t know PALL MALL was a game before it was a street! 22:43. Thanks Jeff and K.
  9. Agree, all good except 27a doesn’t work definition wise. But I liked the cheap skate idea. 20 minutes.
    And am also newly informed about Pall Mall being so named because the game was played there so thank you keriothe.
  10. 16:42. I agree with others about 27A. DOMAIN my LOI… not sure why! I liked the son of Solomon and BRIDESMAID, but COD to ROLLER COASTER. Good to learn PALL MALL was named after the game. Thanks all.
  11. Remembered from school days reading of Sam Johnson’s ‘Bartholomew Fair’. Under a PALL? Cloud?

    But got marooned in the north-west passage.

    No worries over 27ac SELL-BY DATE – might being the operative word.

    FOI 7dn START-UP

    LOI 2dn EXCERPT – stupid clue


    WOD 21ac clue REHOBOAM (SONG OF SOLOMON another schoolboy favourite) – know thee thy champagnes!

      1. Well Ben Jonson never went to university, so could not possibly have written the plays. Also The Alchemist contains references to Spain, and Jonson can’t possibly have been to Spain because of his bad feet, which is further proof.
        A close reading of Johnson’s Dictionary of the English Language using a statistical key that I invented to decode the underlying meaning, reveals that Samuel Johnson was the true author of the plays, a fact that was covered up by everyone pretending that Ben Jonson was a playwright for the century or so between his death and Johnson’s Dictionary being published.

        Edited at 2019-01-13 02:14 pm (UTC)

        1. I gather that Ben Jonson went to Westminster School before missing out on University. Plays so learned must have emanated from a grammar school scholar. So, they’re not his. Nobody with a public school education could have such knowledge. Samuel Johnson does indeed fit this bill. But the refined feelings revealed in the works could only have come from a woman. My own view is that they were written by Sue Johnston, when she was resting from filming episodes of The Royle Family.
  12. Not just Pall Mall but also The Mall are named after the game. It was a very simple game and after an initial surge of interest it died down and the (slightly) more complicated croquet took over.
    I have a fondness for Pall Mall having once been a member of the Reform Club; and my brother-in-law is a member of the Athaneum
    1. Thank you anon for spotting my – ahem – deliberate mistake. It is an anagram of A GUNBOAT MAY containing AN. This makes the word ‘be’ a bit awkward. I guess it has to mean ‘are’, which is unconventional grammar.
  13. Thanks Jeff and keriothe
    Took a bit over an hour but there were plenty of interruptions – felt much easier than that time. I hadn’t heard of the BARNACLE goose before and didn’t know ‘Rehoboam’, but guessed that he must have been related to SOLOMON after getting most of the checkers of him. The game of PALL MALL was also new to me – the cover I saw as the cloud of smoke. Follow the horses and kicking myself for not associating the D as the abbreviation for ‘dam’. Damn !
    Got SELL-BY DATE by working out the anagram with the Y and A in place – not 100% correct but as has been said, the meaning was crystal clear.
    Liked the cross-referencing to the other clues, particularly having to use a secondary definition to what had been used in them
    DOMAIN was my last in.

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