Times 23525 – Not too hard

Enjoyable puzzle, with some good misdirection. Easy to break into, but tricky enough to finish, especially the NE quadrant.

Solving time: 29 mins (about average for me for the Times)

* = anagram

5 ERE BUS (Sub reversed). The only NE quadrant one I got first time around.
9 BISH O PRIC “Prick” = Injection Homophone (Thanks to the poster who spotted this error)
11 S OWER From the New Testament
13 A M(OR)IST Very clever stuff. “entertain” is a containing indicator in the cryptic reading and “showing” is a link. OR = Other Ranks (Troops) – a crossword staple.
14 FALSE RELATION A musical term, not in the Concise OED, but in the on-line Collins. So it was good that the wordplay was friendly and it could be guessed.
23 H EMEN(d) “Not quite” right i.e. last letter off.
26 DERRIERE. Links with 14 Down (Frenchman). Danny Boy is the Londonderry Air or in its “abridged version” Derry Air, homophone. Definition “14 Down’s behind.” Raised a smile.

1 FA B(I)AN Socialists believing in gradual change named after a Roman general famous for successful delaying tactics (Fabius the Cunctator).
4 LORDS TEMP ORAL With “entitled” and “cricket ground” the first word had to be “Lords” The lay peers.
7 BEW (web reversed) AILING Very tricky – it was hard to know which end of the clue gave the definition.
10 CLA (RENCE HO)USE (cheer on)* Rider = clause (Clever misdirection)
14 FRENCHMAN Nancy is a town in France. Should have noticed earlier the absence of a hyphen in “Nancy boy”
17 R (leader finally) EVEN (regular) UE. The EU and the R, “given rise” i.e. written upwards. Very good seamless join as the two parts of the clue meet at “regular/income”
18 IN C(r)OMER
19 TEE-HEE “After a drink, man’s heard to giggle” “Tea” “he” My one niggle – I took the homophone to refer just to “man” but I think Tee-hee has to be right.
22 AM USE (AM) being “half a day”, the other half being PM.

7 comments on “Times 23525 – Not too hard”

  1. 9:44 here – a bit harder than average for me. Had a good giggle over 26, and enjoyed the challenge elsewhere – the setters seem to be in a good patch of collective form at the moment.
  2. I also found the NE corner the trickiest part, especially as I wasn’t a hundred percent sure of ROSEOLA for 6 down. EREBUS and SCRUTINY were the last to go in for me.
    I thought there were some nice clues here:13 and 26 ac., 10 and 14 down were all rather witty and delightful
  3. 6m29s for me which I like to think is average (but is really a bit quicker). The anonymous contributor above is accurate, unlike his typing.

    I actually believed the ‘punishment’ in 1d was (sin)BIN not BAN, whoops, but you’re clearly right, NMS. Nice puzzle, several clues repaying further inspection.

  4. I just couldn’t wrap my head around this one! After half an hour I was stuck on 5, 11 and 25ac, 7 and 8 dn.

    However, I was able to download and solve this week’s Spectator crossword (a themed barred puzzle with 13 misprint clues and nine unclued entries) without much difficulty (and without Chambers), so it wasn’t that I was being particularly thick today…just had a mental block I suppose.

    1. 5A and 6D beat me. I guessed 7D correctly but just couldn’t see why. I spent ages trying to fit in NAL (LAN)as the computer network element but never saw BEW (WEB) even when I had the answer. Woods for trees!
  5. Even some of the speedsters found this one a bit tricky!
    Here are the “easies” left out of the blog:

    1a Minutes taken during foreign office meeting, following conventional rules (8)

    12a Put to sea aboard a ship in storms (7)
    A S SAIL S. Aboard ship or the like in a clue usually means within S and S. SS as a prefix for ship is an abbreviation of Steam Ship according to Wiki.

    16a Making plum selection? Yes and no. (6,7)

    20a Find how to give sofa a makeover (7)
    RECOVER. A bit of a tricky literal there?

    21a Amount of ground measured out in (the race)*

    24a Mike made reundant by this boastful type? (9)

    2d (R)uns and (skis)* off course – incurring these? (5)

    6d Lacking foresight principally, f(ools are) remarkably rash (7)

    15d Hut in which reptile is raised gets burnt (8)
    S CORC HED. The upside down reptile is the Croc. Not found in the avearge garden shed.

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