Times Cryptic 27230

Posted on Categories Daily Cryptic

Not too demanding a puzzle today, which is perhaps just as well.  Ho Ho Ho! and a Merry Christmas to one and all!

As usual definitions are underlined in bold italics, {deletions and substitutions are in curly brackets} and [anagrinds, containment, reversal and other indicators in square ones]


1 Fish American lawyer caught — and ate, ultimately (4)
DACE – DA (American lawyer), C (caught), {at}E [ultimately]
3 Linesman’s acknowledgement of clever remark about days in jail (5,5)
TOUCH JUDGE – TOUCHÉ (acknowledgement of clever remark) containing [about] D (days) which is itself contained  by [in] JUG (jail). I had a problem with this until I solved the cross-referenced clue at 7dn which identifies the sport in question.
9 Consequence of situation surrounding ancient city (7)
STATURE – STATE (situation) containing [surrounding] UR (ancient city).  Consequence in the sense of importance.
11 Price university may exact at first for clothing (7)
COSTUME – COST (price), U (university), M{ay} + E{xact} [at first]
12 Two women by an enclosure holding record for farm activity (13)
SHEEPSHEARING – SHE + SHE (two women) containing [holding] EP (record), A RING (an enclosure)
14 Meet at end of scripture exam — again (5)
RESIT – RE (scripture – Religious Education), SIT (meet – as Parliament sits or meets, for example). I imagine ‘scripture’ in this sense has long fallen out of use, but at one time it was the name of the subject as taught in some schools, later retitled RE as in this clue, or RI (Religious Instruction),  a term I suspect has now met a simlar fate. I think the answer has to be read as a noun.
15 Wren eg, male, grabbing insect’s tail, caught on outside (9)
ARCHITECT – ARCHIE (male) containing [grabbing] {insec}T [tail], C{augh}T [on outside] CT (caught – a method of dismissal as noted in cricketing records, although ‘c’ is also used). ‘On outside’ is irrelevant unless I’m missing something, but it adds to the surface and acts as a diversion by suggesting enclosure where there is none. Thanks to Kevin for pointing out my oversight. I did actually find ‘ct = caught’ on a cricketing site but can’t trace it now. It isn’t supported in any of the usual sources.
17 Description of virgin territory don turned out (9)
UNTRODDEN – Anagram [out] of DON TURNED
19 Hunting cry from Cockney in Scottish town (5)
ALLOA – {h}ALLOA (hunting cry) [from Cockney]. Interminable hours spent in my childhood sitting through football results on Saturday evenings whilst waiting for a favourite TV show to start were not entirely wasted as I learned the names of the Scottish League teams – in this case Alloa Athletic. That helped me here as I didn’t know the hunting cry – ‘halloo’ and ‘tally-ho’ being the extent of my repertoire.
21 Terrified old nurse stabbed by kid on grass (5-8)
PANIC-STRICKEN – PANIC (grass), SEN (old nurse – State Enrolled Nurse) containing [stabbed by] TRICK (kid)
24 Month in which men will secure court award (7)
OCTOBER – OR (men) contains [will secure] CT (court) + OBE (award)
25 Old coin found by soldier going over base (7)
IGNOBLE – GI (soldier) reversed [going over], NOBLE (old coin)
26 Maintain head has adopted favoured uniform with hesitation (10)
PERPETUATE – PATE (head) contains [has adopted] ER (hesitation) + PET (favoured) + U (uniform – NATO alphabet). The order in the wordplay looks wrong to me as in the clue we have: A/B with C (PET / U / ER) which appears in the answer as C/A/B (ER / PET / U). I know about the convention ‘A on B’ =  B/A in Across clues, but I’m not aware the same applies when the linking word is ‘with’.
27 Inclination to be crooked (4)
BENT – Two meanings
1 Dire sort said to flourish over America (10)
DISASTROUS – Anagram [flourish] of SORT SAID, US (America)
2 People pursuing further drinks (7)
CHASERS – Two meanings
4 Accidentally picked up report of animal minder’s position (9)
OVERHEARD – Sounds like [report of] “over herd” (animal minder’s position)
5 Bill’s companion catches cold, needing a warm drink (5)
COCOA – COO (bill’s companion – ‘bill and coo’) contains [catches] C (cold), A
6 Defence originally advanced in only one literary genre (13)
JUSTIFICATION – JUST (only), I (one), then A{dvanced} [originally] contained by [in] FICTION (literary genre)
7 Addict finally consumed most of 3’s game, I gathered (7)
DRUGGIE – {consume}D [finally],  RUGGE{r} (3’s game) [most of] containing I [I gathered]
8 English cleric’s flat (4)
EVEN – E (English), VEN (cleric), short for Venerable, this is a title given to Archdeacons in the C of E.
10 Like gripping book lacking capacity to include crushing remark (13)
UNPUTDOWNABLE – UNABLE (lacking capacity) containing [to include] PUT-DOWN (crushing remark)
13 Feat involving Tim and Netta, not daughter (10)
ATTAINMENT – Anagram [involving] of TIM AN{d} NETTA [not daughter]
16 Inhibit firm led by right-wing politician (9)
CONSTRICT – CON (right-wing politician), STRICT (firm)
18 Racecourse character’s quiet way to stop row (7)
TIPSTER – P (quiet) + ST (way) contained by [to stop] TIER (row)
20 Largely similar to a ballet, oddly attractive (7)
LIKABLE – LIK{e} (similar) [largely], A, B{a}L{l}E{t} [oddly]
22 My fine, initially unspoiled, holiday destination? (5)
CORFU – COR (my), F (fine), U{nspoiled} [initially]
23 Business enterprise completed takeover (4)
COUP – CO (business enterprise), UP (completed)

30 comments on “Times Cryptic 27230”

  1. Slowed down mainly by TOUCH JUDGE, which I’d never heard of. I vaguely remembered ALLOA, but couldn’t remember what the initial vowel was. But in G&S’s “Patience”, Bunthorne offers to read his new poem, “Oh, Hollow! Hollow! Hollow!”, and Patience thinks it’s going to be a hunting song. I was rather hoping we could get through the year without another my=COR.
  2. Here in China the goose is cooking and the crossword has has had a quick stir-fry. 19 minutes – such a difference from yesterday’s drudge!

    FOI and WOD 10dn UNPUTDOWNABLE – a grand start



    I was relieved that 12ac was indeed SHEEPSHEARING.

    ‘A Happy Christmas’ as we say in UK. Why is it always ‘Merry Christmas’ Stateside? A Dickensian throwback?

    Edited at 2018-12-25 05:35 am (UTC)

  3. This took me under 7 minutes which is a nice Christmas ego-booster.
    As I’m sure you know, jackkt, I am somewhat younger than you, but sitting through sports results waiting for something better is a vivid memory for me. The concept is of course completely alien to my kids, and as far as I’m concerned that’s definitely an improvement.
    To all TfTT bloggers, contributors and lurkers, a very merry Christmas!

    Edited at 2018-12-25 05:22 am (UTC)

    1. Indeed. The results used to come in ‘live’ whilst the camera focussed on a teleprinter machine. The mechanism jigged up and down and printed each latest result one letter at a time and then returned to a static position waiting for the next one to start. This would go on for what seems like hours until the results were all in, and then they’d be read out all over again as ‘classified results’ by each division. I’m reminded of this Michael Bentine sketch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-fub3Z1n2jc (the sound takes a moment to click in).
      1. Yes, I remember it well. Do you remember in the 1950s on the radio (Light Programme) Sports Report at 5pm every Saturday run by Eamonn Andrews?
        1. Yes. Some friends of my parents reported seeing Eammon Andrews working a boxing booth at a fair on Ealing Common, offering to take on all-comers to last a round with him and win a prize. That would have been early 1950s I believe.
  4. 19 minutes of my Christmas Day usefully occupied, though I could have done without RESIT, for which I failed miserably to get meet=SIT and submitted with trepidation.
    I agree PERPETUATE was out of order, but hey, it’s Christmas!
    Nearly felled by having FORTIFICATION for defence at 6 (I have no justification!) and allowed LOI ARCHITECT in without checking how all the wordplay worked, so missed out on the outside court device.
    Many thanks to Jack for double-overtime-worthy duty, and a pleasurable outcome to boot. Happy Christmas to all.
  5. 33 minutes over Christmas porridge (which is, if I’m honest, rather like every other day’s porridge to me, but I’ll be treating myself with a pleasant second breakfast later, once I’ve actually woken up…)

    Held up a bit by the sporting and hunting references, and a little worried about ALLOA, but as one would hope for a holiday, everything turned out well in the end.

    Have a good day, all!

  6. Another 19 minutes. Simple fare, perfect for solving during breaks from hosting 30 ravenous mouths…
  7. 12:53. Easily digestible fare which encouraged a lot of biffing, but I still managed to parse as I went. I liked COCOA and OCTOBER. PERPETUATE and COUP my last 2 in. I agree with you jack that the wordplay at 28a is a bit odd. Festive felicitations to all.
  8. 11:23 and all before the first Buck’s Fizz. It will be all downhill from here I suspect.
    Happy Christmas one and all and grateful thanks to all our bloggers who have helped make that kind of time possible.
  9. 20 mins with croissant and Cherry and Amaretto Jam. Well it is Christmas.
    Nice to see the old Panic Grass popping up again.
    Thanks setters and bloggers. Merry Christmas all.
  10. Gentle offering for Christmas morning, struggled with TOUCH JUDGE even when saw it was about rugby, and couldn’t see how PERPETUATE really worked, otherwise fair play. Thanks for blogging Santa Jackkt and good one keriothe 7 minutes is sharp.
  11. As others – simple fare with 7D giving 3A and slightly confused by PERPETUATE. Well done Jack

    Happy? Merry? Who cares – enjoy!

  12. My first all correct under 10 minutes solve in quite a while. Would have been quicker still if I had seen Perpetuate sooner.

    Merry Xmas to all. I hope some of you have a go at my political crossword which keriothe has kindly linked to above.


  13. A gentle offering which I almost screwed up in 19:45, but a last minute proof read showed a careless LIKEBLE at 20d. Phew. 20:10. DACE was my starter and TOUCH JUDGE brought up the rear. Enjoyable puzzle. Off to my brother’s for lunch now. He is a keen home brewer and I’m not driving today so I’m looking forward to sampling his output. Happy Christmas to all. Thanks setter and Jack.
    On edit: if you’re interested in home brewing his website is here: http://www.jimsbeerkit.co.uk

    Edited at 2018-12-25 03:51 pm (UTC)

  14. My 14.06 would have been quite a bit faster had I not convinced myself (too clever by half) that the linesman was sure to be a poet. We aren’t expecting the younger members of the family until later so last night it wasn’t necessary for my husband to don his COSTUME and consume the cup of Santa COCOA left for him (followed, as I don’t doubt it always was, by a few CHASERS).

    Feliz Navidad y Prospero Ano to all setters, bloggers and contributors. Now I’m going to have a bath and then tackle Aston Villa’s puzzle along with a croissant but alas unaccompanied by Myrtilus’s cherry and amaretto jam.

    P.S. Oh those football results, yes! I remember that you could predict the outcome based on the rising and falling of the announcer’s voice.

        1. The first Classified Results Announcer on the BBC Light programme Sports Report was John Webster, although I don’t think he was name-checked. He was succeeded in 1974 by James Alexander Gordon and then the current announcer Charlotte Green in 2013. Martin and Gudgin performed the same task on BBC TV Grandstand.
  15. 18:53, not sure I parsed everything but some nice light fare like this definitely required after a nice big Christmas dinner and a few glasses of wine. Merry Christmas every one!
  16. Everyone else has gone off to bed after a day of feasting and fun — leaving me a moment of peace to do the crossword. Didn’t time it (because I opened the thing on my laptop before breakfast this morning, at which point the festivities kicked off and I never got to look at it again) and the clock has been ticking away all day since.
    Anyway, a nice gentle cruise through the grid with some easy biffing at ALLOA, PANIC-STRICKEN (DNK the grass, but saw ‘trick’=kid), ARCHITECT inter alia.
    Cold turkey tomorrow! Yum!
    Thanks to jackkt for blogging today. and I wish a very happy Christmas to one and all.
  17. This is SO common among cricket fans, scorers and reference materials that it is a real surprise that it’s not in the usual sources (as also noted in fifteensquared a few years ago).

    But highly authoritative sources do cite it, for example, ESPN Cricinfo (the largest online site devoted to the game: http://www.espncricinfo.com/zimbabwe/content/player/55427.html), and, arguably, even more persuasively still, the Lord’s of Crosswords himself, PB: http://www.biddlecombe.demon.co.uk/yagcc/YAGCC7.html

    I have a feeling the cricketers’ Bible, the Wisden Cricket Almanac, also uses/used it, but don’t have one to hand.

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