Times Cryptic 28100

Posted on Categories Daily Cryptic

Solving time: 38 minutes but technically a DNF because I used aids for one unknown as my LOI. Other than that it all seems straightforward.

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]. I usually omit all reference to positional indicators unless there is a specific point that requires clarification.

1 Current tribute defends quiet expertise (14)
AC (Alternating Current), then COMPLIMENT (tribute) contains [defends] SH (quiet!)
9 Reliable Blue Berets fit into cast (9)
UN (Blue Berets  – as worn by United Nations troops), then A1 (fit) contained by [into] FLING (cast)
10 Drive, say, all but disappeared (3,2)
EG (say – for example), GON{e} (disappeared) [all but…]
11 Deal with danger, losing height (5)
T{h}REAT (danger) [losing height]
12 Support at the front from top officers, before one retreats (9)
BRASS (top officers), then ERE (before) + I (one) (reversed) [retreats]
13 Detective’s words before meal are degrading (8)
DI’S (detective’s – Detective Inspector’s), GRACE (words before meal)
15 Surrealist backed enthralling Republican (6)
BET ON (backed) containing [enthralling] R (Republican). André Breton (1896–1966) French author and surrealist theorist. Never ‘eard of ‘im, and I failed to get to him via wordplay even with all the checkers in place, so I looked him up.
17 Uncaring, cold as usual, snubbing our lot (6)
C (cold), AS, {us}UAL [snubbing our lot – us]
19 A medic wearing jumper with posh torch (8)
A + MB (medic) contained by [wearing] FLEA (jumper), U (posh)
22 Trade union offensive limiting mine corruption (9)
TU (trade union), then RUDE (offensive) containing [limiting] PIT (mine)
23 African socialist utopia recalled to some extent (5)
Hidden [to some extent] and reversed [recalled] in {social}IST UT{opia}
24 Finished twentieth originally in the Open (5)
OVER (finished), T{wentieth} [originally]
25 Small fish attack pond plant (5-4)
S (small), PIKE (fish), RUSH (attack). Never ‘eard of it, but the wordplay left little room for doubt.
26 Easily scared, Kitchener ached after surgery (7-7)
Anagram [after surgery] of KITCHENER ACHED
1 Later instruction from TUC holding journalist in high regard (5,9)
TUC containing [holding] ED (journalist) contained by [in] ADULATION (high regard). For the surface reading some may like to know that TUC is a federation of trades unions in England and Wales and the C stands for Congress.
2 Constant bids for funds (7)
C (constant), OFFERS (bids)
3 Chairman’s supporter avoids area that’s wet (5)
M{a}OIST (Chairman’s supporter) [avoids area – a]
4 Call up sponsor to be collected (4-4)
DIAL (call) reversed [up], BACK (sponsor). Cool, calm and collected.
5 Distinguished archbishop is revolutionary (6)
LANG (archbishop) + IS reversed [revolutionary]. Cosmo Lang was the Archbishop of Canterbury from 1928 to 1942 and presided over the coronation of King George VI in 1937.
6 Big Eddy, top performer, clutches large mike (9)
MAESTRO (top performer) contains [clutches] L (large), then M (Mike – NATO alphabet)
7 Don’t look after injured leg caught in trap (7)
Anagram [injured] of LEG then C (caught) all contained by [ in] NET (trap)
8 Used dinner hour misguidedly, turning out thus? (14)
Anagram [misguidedly] of USED DINNER HOUR. I think we need the whole clue as the definition.
14 It’s feasible dealing with with boxer’s idiosyncrasy (9)
RE (dealing with), ALI’S (boxer’s), TIC (idiosyncrasy)
16 Swimmers turn red if energy rises internally (8)
BLUSH (turn red) containing [internally] IF + E (energy) reversed [rises]. Never ‘eard of it, but again the wordplay was helpful..
18 What’s picked up in disorderly creches? (7)
Anagram [disorderly] of CRECHES. I doubt that a single screech in a creche would even be noticed!
20 Charge for altering test run (7)
Anagram [altering] TEST RUN
21 Scrap odd parts of tours on isle to avoid current (6)
T{o}U{r}S [odd parts of], {i}SLE [avoid current – i]
23 Article’s followed by thank-you letter (5)
THE (definite article), TA (thank-you)

94 comments on “Times Cryptic 28100”

  1. But apparently there’s no such thing as a fluefish?
    Oh well

    Edited at 2021-10-05 01:53 am (UTC)

  2. 32 minutes, with a bit of luck on my side. Fingers crossed for BRETON and SIGNAL, but both seemed likely, one from the wordplay, the other from the def. Didn’t know the ‘pond plant’ or ‘Swimmers’ either but they looked plausible enough, again with wordplay as support.

    … Benedicto benedicatur, per Christum Dominum nostrum.

  3. I didn’t know BRETON either, but got it from the wordplay. I don’t think I’ve ever heard the phrase CHICKEN-HEARTED, although once I had CHICKEN there wasn’t really any alternative for the remaining letters. I also found it hard to get going at first, with almost nothing going in as I went down the across clues until I got to CASUAL. Then quite a bit went in at the bottom.
      1. Ironically, we even talked at the end of the stream about how you never fail to comment that you won’t be watching!
  4. DNK the pond plant, and thought of SHAKE-RUSH first, but BLUEFISH (also DNK) took care of that. Like Vinyl, I wondered about SCREECH; unlike him, I never thought of the relevant meaning until I came here. Knew BRETON, didn’t know he was a surrealist.
      1. Here I’d casually assumed (and probably so did Vinyl) that you had the 2 meanings while we only had the Nativity scene meaning. ODE gives the Nativity meaning as the first historically.
        What do you call a baby’s bed with barred sides? That’s what we call a crib.
        1. I know crib is used for a baby’s small bed but am not aware of any particular design requirement. ‘Cot’ is another word but I think of that as something larger than a crib. Not that I’m an expert on such matters.
    1. The man often referred to as “the Pope of Surrealism” might be said to have become in some sense the only true surrealist, as he (after borrowing the word from Apollinaire, who understood it differently) assumed the authority of defining Surrealism, and redefining it, as well as deciding who was in the movement (!) and who was excommunicated for some effraction of Breton’s ideals. In the United States, at least, Salvador Dalí stole much of his thunder and became the name most people think of when they hear the word. Still, I’m surprised that so many people are drawing blanks here.

      Edited at 2021-10-05 07:25 pm (UTC)

  5. Was about to give up until “bet on” came to me. Fortunately convinced myself that BRETON sounded familiar, but couldn’t have told you what position he played.

    Until that point, a steady solve. A few of them fell in stages, like CHICKEN-HEARTED, TUSSLE and SPIKE-RUSH.

    Prompted by Vinyl and Kevin to look up the different US meaning for creche. Didn’t know that one.

    Thanks Jack and setter.

  6. Decent solve for me, including a few where I was a bit unsure, but got there with the aid of the cryptic.

    – Was pretty sure the word TURPITUDE started with a TE (and pretty unsure of the definition). Probably I’m thinking of TERPSICHORE
    – Didn’t know about Archbishop Lang
    – Thought CRECHE was a collision between two cars in Kensington

    LOI BRETON, which I entered without parsing as I knew about André. Pink square was a careless typo in THREAT, slightly peeved about that, but doing the discipline right is something I can achieve

    Thanks J and setter

    1. I only know TURPITUDE from the expression ‘moral turpitude’ so I knew it was something bad, but not exactly what.
    2. I was most amused by Our Miss Tremble’s collision in Ken High Street. (This could not possibly have occurred in West Ken, however!). We resided in Flaam for many years.

      Edited at 2021-10-05 05:42 pm (UTC)

      1. Haha – you channeled my very thought processes there, horryd. I considered WK and KHS as possible locations, but didn’t know which was more likely.

        Thanks for filling in my knowledge-gap!

  7. Like others, BRETON gave me the most trouble today. I had all the checkers quite early but had little idea of the answer so left it for later with some concern. When I came back to it at the end fortunately I thought of “bet on” for backed quite quickly. On another day I could have stared at it for ages.
    1. This deserves the rest of the week in the naughty chair!! However your time is quite splendid! Green Meldrew
  8. Never heard of the composer or the artist, but I’d heard of the language/bloke, so that was that for that clue, especially as I have been known to have a flutter on the horses. A German-trained geegee won the Arc on Sunday. I wonder if that is a first?

    Looks like a German might win Bake-off too. Is there anything they can’t do?

  9. 25 mins pre-brekker. I just avoided the Misère by having heard of Andre, but I thought it was a bit harsh on those who hadn’t.
    Don’t like Screech singular in multiple crèches, but do like “Chairman’s supporter”.
    Thanks setter and J.
  10. Like others, I struggled to get going. I think my FOI (SCREECH) was only after 6 or 7 mins. thereafter everything seemed to fall into place quite nicely with no clues I failed to understand.
    I knew of Andre Breton but did not know he was a Surrealist. Mistakenly, I thought he was a Fauvist.
    Given the dates, Cosmo Lang must have been involved somewhere along the line in the abdication of Edward VIII.
    I’m still having a little chuckle about one of yesterday’s clues: AUTOPSY = ‘stiff examination’.
    Not NEGLECT, or CASUAL cogitation
    A MAELSTROM yesterday
    Much more LAID BACK today
    An ACCOMPLISHMENT on each occasion
  12. A very good time for me. Last two in were SIGNAL and BRETON, whom I hadn’t heard of either. NHO SPIKE RUSH but the clue was generous. Much better than yesterday’s miserable performance. Thank you Jack and setter.

    A slow start but a lot came easily after ACCOMPLISHMENT. LOI was half-remembered, so I was crossing my fingers.

    Thank you to jackkt and the setter.

  14. Beaten by SPIKE-RUSH – I put ‘spike bush’, hoping desperately that bush could be short for ambush, which sort of means to attack.

    Enjoyed this otherwise. Like many others I didn’t know BRETON but eventually saw the wordplay, and for some reason I couldn’t parse the relatively simple ACCOMPLISHMENT despite having all the checkers.

    Thanks to setter and blogger.

  15. 11:09 A lot easier than yesterday. DNK BLUEFISH, SPIKE RUSH or BRETON, by the wordplay rescued me. Thanks Jackkt and setter.
  16. 7:18. No problems here. I knew the surrealist poet, and am a little surprised by the number who didn’t. I don’t think I’ve come across BLUEFISH or SPIKE RUSH before, and the Archbishop was of course a complete unknown. That one has to take the prize for obscurity today!

    Edited at 2021-10-05 07:48 am (UTC)

    1. I probably know more Archbishops than Surrealists, though I used to work close to the headquarters of the London Institute of ‘Pataphysics, a charming bookshop in Hoxton. Chacun…
    2. You and me both. At least this gave me something to yammer about after getting to the blog so late.

      Edited at 2021-10-05 07:32 pm (UTC)

  17. 28 minutes following late arrival of newspapers. I was slow in finishing off in the SE, with the two unknowns, SPIKE-RUSH and BLUEFISH, the last to fall. I’m giving COD to SIGNAL if only because I remembered Archbishop Lang, but otherwise it might have gone to TURPITUDE, a word I sometimes confuse in my head with the stuff you used to wash your paint brushes in. Thank you Jack and setter, and to Guy the paper deliverer for commitment beyond the call of duty.
  18. Took a long time for 1ac to reveal itself, along with the ones which it connected to, especially as LAUD was the only four-letter archbishop I could think of to begin with. All good in the end. BRETON is a chestnut for quizzers, if not apparently crossworders (the founders or namers of artistic movements come up *a lot*…)
  19. I knew André well enough – he was still around in the late sixties when the child of Surrealism and Modernism, ‘Kitsch’ was developing.

    Q. How many surrealists does it take to fix a lightbulb?
    A. Three. One to set fire to the giraffe and the other to get the clocks into the bath-tub.

    Mr. Magritte had to fix his own light bulbs.

    I was some 45 minutes engaged – 30 mins (luncheon) and the 15 mins to finish off the top half – once 1ac ACCOMPLISHMENT heaved into view.

    FOI 18dn SCREECH without ever considering what creches were! (Surreal!)

    LOI 16dn BLUEFISH which at first I thought to be DEERFISH!(Surreal!)

    COD 15ac BRETON (Surreal!)

    WOD 12ac BRASSIERE – our Jack never said a a disapproving word. Good old Aston Vanilla!

    Edited at 2021-10-05 08:57 am (UTC)

    1. Best collection of short stories ever: “Keep the Giraffe Burning” by John T. Sladek. Sometimes classed as satire, sometimes as science-fiction, sometimes as sociology.
  20. I chuckled at my FOI, MOIST. Managed to remember the Archbishop once I’d used the instructions to put SI at the beginning. ACCOMPLISHMENT came latish in the proceedings after I though of SH instead of P for quiet. EGG ON came second and allowed me to make some progress in the NE, with UNDERNOURISHED jumping out of the anagrist and providing some helpful checkers. ADULT EDUCATION followed CASUAL DISGRACE and I was soon left with 15a. After much cogitation I hit on bet on and the job was done although I’ve NHO our surrealist. 29:03. Thanks setter and Jack.
  21. Just under 17, a more relaxing run than yesterday, though I had to make up BRETON, SPIKE RUSH and BLUEFISH from the wp.
    While familiar with creches (though I’d put a little roof thingy over the first E), I wasn’t particularly impressed with SCREECH. Babies and smaller rugrats make many noises, but I’d expect screeches more from owleries and such, or from brakes just before Denise’s brilliant Kensington collision.
    Indebted, as ever, to Father Brown for FLAMBEAU.
  22. Completed by Bond Street, held up by LOI BRETON (NHO). Also NHO SPIKE RUSH but that was gettable from the cryptic. No problem with SIGNAL (once I’d rejected SIDUAL).
  23. 26:14. Rare for me to be sub-30.

    Had never heard of spike-rush, and thought rush = attack was a bit of a stretch. Perhaps there’s a meaning I don’t know. Dredged Breton and flambeau from recesses.

    1. I looked twice at it too, but found this in Collins whilst preparing the blog:

      If you rush something or someone, you move quickly and forcefully at them, often in order to attack them.
      ‘They rushed the entrance and forced their way in’.

      1. That’s COBUILD. Further down the same page you will find this in the dictionary proper: ‘to make a sudden attack upon (a fortress, position, person, etc)’. Lexico has ‘dash towards (someone or something) in an attempt to attack or capture’.
  24. Half an hour, like others DK SPIKE RUSH or BLUEFISH but it had to be fish and got them from wordplay without looking up. 1a and 1d parsed post writing in. Thanks jackkt. A bit harder than yesterday IMO, although the SNITCH thinks otherwise.

    Edited at 2021-10-05 09:07 am (UTC)

  25. ….TUTSI goodbye. I biffed my way through this, and seem to be in a minority of one in finding it harder than yesterday’s.

    NHO BRETON, or SPIKE-RUSH, but both were easy enough from the parsings. I didn’t, however, parse any of ACCOMPLISHMENT, UNFAILING, or ADULT EDUCATION. A bit miffed to be a whole second slower than johninterred 😂

    Surprisingly, I knew the fish from a recent puzzle in either the Independent or the Grauniad.

    COD UNDERNOURISHED (closely followed my MOIST)
    TIME 11:10

  26. Pleased to have finished, with LOI SIGNAL. Don’t know too many archbishops (Ramsey and Tutu were early runners). Thanks for showing how MOIST worked, but COD to MAELSTROM.

    NHO of CHICKEN-HEARTED, but its a great word and I will try and use it today. More useful than SPIKE-RUSH, which sounds like a 19th bayonet charge.

  27. 17.50 with the last two minutes spent struggling with Breton until the penny dropped. Only got it with the bet on element. NHO Breton the surrealist painter.

    One thing I did like about this puzzle was the long edging clues, always get a lift when I see those going in.

    Enjoyable so thanks setter ( not forgetting blogger).

  28. Same as everyone else: NHO BLUEFISH, BRETON, SPIKE-RUSH.

    Penguins have creches, so that’d fit.

    14′ 32″, thanks jack and setter.

  29. A nice easy one today, then two impossible ones (for me at least) to finish off with. Was wondering about BRITON for a while. One wonders if these DNK answers are put in to juice up an otherwise straightforward and easily solved crossword.
  30. 22:44. Knew BRETON but couldn’t have sworn I knew who LANG was, not that it mattered, but having spent the past hour reading about him I will remember him next time.
        1. I’m Jeremy; nice to meet you. I’ll be sure to mention you often in every stream of mine going forward.
  31. It wasn’t meant as a criticism, it just surprised me as I would have said BRETON was very famous. But then I am basically an honorary Frenchman (without a passport to show for it, alas). However random archbishops from nearly a century ago must surely count as obscure. Not that it really mattered for the clue.
  32. Time 14.40. This was a fine puzzle with ‘the long-uns’ falling in short order. Unknowns were Spike Rush and Breton but neither held up proceedings. Bluefish are common enough on the Eastern Seaboard – ah! I notice Olivia beat me to it!
    COD 1dn Adult Education – as it opened up the board.
  33. Archbishop Lang had a central role in ousting Edward VIII and there was a bit of doggerel that made the rounds at the time playing on “Cantuar” which is the formal surname assigned to the position of Archbishop of Canterbury.
    My lord archbishop what a scold you are
    And when your man is down how bold you are
    Of charity how oddly scant you are
    How Lang oh lord how full of cant you are.

    BLUEFISH are very common along the eastern seaboard of the US and can be caught by casting from the shore into the surf, although you have to be careful removing the hook if you land one because they have quite fearsome teeth. Delicious cooked with a little butter, pepper and scallions. 16.08

      1. Kevin and Francois – one version is: Auld lang swine how full of cant you are.
  34. I very nearly had the invented word tarpitude from “trade u” offensive plus pit but it did not look right then I saw what was going on.

    30 minutes with a fingers crossed there must be a surrealist called Breton 😊

    Thanks J and setter

  35. by SPIKE-RUSH and BLUEFISH, but once checkers were in they fell into place faute de mieux. With nothing in after 10 mins, I thought this was going to be a stinker… but they came pretty quick once I’d got the long words around the edges.
  36. As my family name is Faverot de Kerbrech, a very Breton name, I should at least have heard of the guy. Sadly not….
  37. Took an absolute age but got there in the end with a bit of help from husband with laid back, I saw dial when he said it, and rush, I supplied the pike. I was lucky with Breton, NHO, it was a toss-up between in and Briton, so you can see I didn’t parse it. Much to enjoy. FOI Tutsi. I got about 20 of these without too much difficulty but almost called it a day, the others were so hard to dredge up. I have heard of Cosmo Lang, but didn’t see him in signal. Signal was the only word that fit. The blog cleared up many unparsings and part-parsings. Thanks, Jack, and setter.
    1. Double-take. Saw your avatar: wallaby! Looked more closely: a southern hairy-nosed wombat.
  38. Just glad to finish today, relatively painlessly though I probably made a bit of a meal of it.

    NHO BRETON nor one of today’s random fish — please welcome MR SPIKE-FISH.

  39. I liked 14 dn, concerning = re, boxer’s = (Mohammad) Ali’s, idiosyncrasy = tic. Result Realistic i.e. feasible!! However, I did waste a bit of time thinking about boxer dogs.
  40. Straightforward solve, with Breton my NHO LOI. The word play gave it to me. I liked the chairman’s supporter. Thanks to our blogger, as ever.
  41. 10:30 early this evening. More chauffeuring duties earlier today around Edinburgh dodging the pot holes in a constant downpour. The experience didn’t seem to get me down for whatever reason.
    After a brief and unsuccessful foray into the top of the puzzle, I reverted to the foot and having seen 26 ac ” chicken hearted” straightaway, I worked my way upwards and picked up the setter’s wavelength.
    NHO LOI 25 ac “spike rush” but the word play seemed to work.
    Several fine clues today with COD 22 ac “turpitude”.
    Thanks to Jack for the blog and to the setter.
  42. Slow and steady solve in 3 separate sittings, as had other things to do during the day. All correct in the end. I’d never heard of the surrealist, the pond plant or the fish, but all gettable from the wordplay.
    Thanks for the blog, all the comments and also to the setter, for giving us an elegant, not too taxing puzzle.
  43. 19.58. I got off to a slow start but things soon picked up. I wasn’t fully confident that spike-rush was correct but it seemed to be what was required. Otherwise I had no problems and found this quite satisfying to work through.
  44. Late entry. Decent time for when I’m solving half asleep in bed after a long day churning thru the emails and Zooms.

    Too few short ‘uns to be a fave grid but got a foothold in the south and worked northwards

    BRETON also LOI. Surprised myself by persevering and finally working it out

    Plenty to like elsewhere

    Thanks Setter and Jackkt as usual

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