Times Cryptic 28369 15 August 2022

Hello again. My third and final stand-in for Ulaca, and I am still waiting for the legendary easy ride that Monday crosswords are supposed to deliver. I would not class this as difficult, but it made me think and it had some very neat clues and surface readings. As for COD, I think the kangaroo gets it by a nose from Jack and Jill.

I use the standard TfTT conventions like underlining the definition, CD for cryptic definition, DD for a double one, *(anargsam) and so forth. Nho = “not heard of” and in case of need the Glossary is always handy

1 Approach shaking, bearing last of early religious texts (9)
APOCRYPHA – *(APPROACH), with (earl)Y in there.
6 Formal  body (5)
9 African king is going the wrong way (5)
TUTSI – TUT, + IS reversed. A reference to the Egyptian pharaoh Tutankhamun, aka King Tut. Tutsis are one of the tribes, with the Hutus, involved in several African genocides
10 Killer left, drinking more rum? On the contrary (9)
STRANGLER – L(eft) in STRANGER (more rum)
11 The dictionary’s description of it? (8,7)
DEFINITE ARTICLE – a CD, “the” being a definite article, unlike “a” or “an,” which are indefinite articles
13 Flower that might indicate fall in the Rockies? (8)
SNOWDROP – A CD, the humble snowdrop flower which might be taken to refer to an avalanche. Why in the Rockies specifically, I have no idea. A mountain range closer to home might be more apposite, the Cairngorms or the Alps perhaps. Perhaps our setter is American? See also 23ac
14 Case of robbery in solicitor’s practice (3-3)
TRY-OUT – R(obber)Y in TOUT, a solicitor of a sort
16 Announced composer’s name (6)
HANDLE – Sounds like Handel ..
18 Engineer unclear initially how this provides propulsion (8)
LAUNCHER – *(UNCLEAR), with H(ow) included
21 What could result in Perón’s exile (9,6)
DISPLACED PERSON – *(PERSON) can be “displaced” to make Peron’s, at least as long as we don’t care about diacritics.
23 Buzz from a great distance (9)
LIGHTYEAR – A light year is indeed a great distance, a bit less than six trillion miles. And I imagine you don’t need me to tell you about Buzz Lightyear. I would spell the distance as two words, as would Lexico and Collins. Chambers allows the use of a hyphen, but one word is not a European usage. It is an OK clue however, if you interpret the answer as being constructed from the distance, they do use the same letters..
25 Concede Istanbul provides sanctuary for believer (5)
DEIST – Hidden, slightly, in conceDE ISTanbul.
26 Painter’s daughter drawn to wise man from the east (5)
DEGAS – D(aughter) + SAGE (wise man) reversed
27 Dangerous area? Possibly, if men lied (9)
1 As Garbo did, longed to be different at heart (5)
ACTED – ACHED (longed) with the H replaced with a T
2 Might tired kangaroo be thus  restricted? (3,2,6)
OUT OF BOUNDS – A DD, one jocular. My first idea was “out of pocket,” ha ha, but it doesn’t parse.
3 Was Queen hailed in speech? (7)
REIGNED – sounds like RAINED. Does rained mean the same as hailed? Discuss .. (I would say, no!)
4 Yours truly’s resigning from tax office (8)
POSITION – An IMPOSITION is a tax. Remove the I’M ..
5 A route not taken by many across the pond? (6)
ABROAD – A B ROAD. If our setter thinks B roads are “not taken by many,” he clearly has never visited this part of Kent…
6 Nurse a politician briefly, one in upper house (7)
SENATOR – SEN (state enrolled nurse) + A TOR(y). You can no longer qualify as a SEN, though I believe there are still some working.
7 Jack leaving his companion out of sorts (3)
ILL – (j)ILL. A neat clue. Jack and Jill from the nursery rhyme:

Jack and Jill went up the hill
To fetch a pail of water
Jack fell down and broke his crown
And Jill came tumbling after. 

8 One entertaining a female retiree in novel way (4-5)
12 Boxers hanging out here? (11)
CLOTHESLINE – A CD. I would spell this with two words, as would Lexico, but Collins allows it as one. Chambers uses a hyphen… so  the choice is ours, it seems
13 Kid turned up after school as arranged (9)
SCHEDULED – SCH(ool) + DELUDE (kid) reversed.
15 Bureaucrat’s lover, courageous for the most part (8)
MANDARIN – MAN (lover, as in Stand By Your) + DARIN(g) (courageous)
17 Warning signs slow to appear in records (1-6)
L-PLATES – LATE (slow) in LPS, records. Do they still make those?
19 Many in Foreign Office on retiring accepting outcome (2,3,2)
NO END OF – END (outcome) in FO ON reversed. All quite logical although hard to visualise. The FO is now the FCDO, the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, as of course we all know, although it doesn’t affect the validity of the clue
20 Run off, grabbing last of champagne for a laugh (6)
SCREAM – (champagn)E in SCRAM, to run off
22 Referred to absence of delinquent youth? (5)
NOTED – Oo-hoo, how I winced when I saw this clue. NO TED surely means the absence of a perfectly innocuous youth who likes dressing up a bit, not any sort of delinquent necessarily, as our late lamented commenter and blogger Jimbo regularly had to point out. Collins however does say “any tough or delinquent youth”
24 An up-and-down performance (3)
GIG – a palindromic performance

Author: JerryW

I love The Times crosswords..

84 comments on “Times Cryptic 28369 15 August 2022”

  1. 12:44
    Definitely not difficult, although it took me a while to figure out how LOI IMPOSITION worked. I also lost time taking ‘more rum’ to be (MORE)*. I biffed ACTED & NO END OF, parsing post-submission. I had a ! by NOTED; the setters seem incorrigible. I wonder if the setter used the Rockies to invite the surmise that ‘fall’=autumn. Liked DEFINITE ARTICLE (“it” is not an article, it’s a pronoun) and DISPLACED PERSON.

    1. “Definite article” never featured in my grammar lessons at school, but from what I’ve picked up here, I thought perhaps the definite article in 11ac was the “The” at the start of the clue?

      1. Yes, that’s it! I mean, it’s THE, the definite article, I mean!
        And there I was, wondering how DEFINITE PRONOUN could be a thing.

    2. Yes I assumed the setter chose a US mountain range so that the misdirectional use of ‘fall’ made sense.

  2. Thanks, jack. You brought him up in reference to Teds, but I was thinking the other day that we should add “Jimbo” to the glossary – a Jimbo being when you solve a clue by having a particular, possibly arcane, bit of scientific or technical GK. Such as Light Year: “I had the Light Year Jimbo”, for example.

  3. 19 minutes. A not too difficult introduction to the week. Like brnchn, I parsed 11a as ‘The’ as the def and the rest as wordplay; good clue. POSITION was bunged in from the def and parsed later, but everything else was pretty clear. OUT OF BOUNDS took far too long to get and was my LOI. It helped to have had TOBIT on Friday for APOCRYPHA.

    Favourite was the surface for ACTED. Thanks for the Tammy link at 15d.

  4. 20:28. Lost a lot of time falling into the DEFINITE PRONOUN trap! But of course ‘the’ would have no place in the clue if it wasn’t the definition. Touché.

    ‘One’ is an indefinite pronoun.

    1. “One” seems pretty definite in a sense, but there are indeed a slew of indefinite pronouns.
      Yet I don’t recall hearing the term (or its converse) before.

      1. NHO ‘(in)definite pronoun’, although one can see (in some cases) a parallel with (in)definite article: I bought a magazine/I bought one, I bought the magazine/I bought it.

  5. 33 minutes. I also put DEFINITE PROUNOUN before correcting it when SENATOR wouldn’t fit across it.

    After all the hoo-ha yesterday about ‘person in charge’ (I only asked!) I thought I’d better check that DISPLACED PERSON is a lexical item, and I’m pleased to report that it is.

  6. 19:30 fail due to an attack of fecklessness. Enjoyed this gentle and witty puzzle very much – but found myself dealing with a A-R-A- for LOI 5d. Guessed AIRWAY (even though it seemed a bit improbable) and decided that I felt lucky…
    …at least I got my breakfast a few minutes earlier than I otherwise would.

    Had lots of fun anyway – thanks J and setter

  7. I failed in exactly the same way as Denise—got everything done in about 23 minutes, then after five more I finally put in SNOWDROP, then couldn’t see anything other than AIRWAY for 5d, even though I didn’t see how it worked, so bunged it in after five more minutes of staring. I’m not sure I’m much more convinced by ABROAD.

  8. At 39 mins one of my slowest Monday puzzles However I thought there were some clever clues especially 2d 21a and 11a
    4d was my last in as I was thinking of a specific office
    Didn’t like 13a as I spent ages trying to think of autumn connection

  9. 5:06 which was less than 100 seconds slower than QC, so very gentle sub-9-min Monday “double”. Some pleasing surface readings, some slight murmurs and tuts (not least at TUT for ‘king’), but all very doable and often biffable. Many thanks to stand-in blogger and setter.

  10. 9:52. This was relatively straightforward for me today as evidenced by sneaking under the 10 minute mark. I had just assumed “it” to be a DEFINITE ARTICLE and thus bunged it in without thinking about it actually being a pronoun. That’s the benefit of being schooled in the 1980s when grammar weren’t taught.

  11. I am bouncing around like a kid
    I just found LIGHTYEAR in the grid
    And with LAUNCHER as well
    This is heaven, not hell
    To the setter- I love what you did!

  12. 26 minutes with LOI ABROAD. I too could hear Jimbo’s protestations. COD to DISPLACED PERSON. Trickier than it looked. Thank you, setter . Great blog to finish, Jerry.

  13. 9:23. Like Jerry, I enjoyed OUT OF BOUNDS and ILL best. DEFINITE ARTICLE went in without thinking the definition could be anything other than of “The”. LOI, as some others had too, was ABROAD, which I should have seen more quickly as it has come up before. As for “Rockies” at 13A, I thought the setter was just adding some direction as “fall in the Rockies” could have indicated “Autumn”. Thank-you Jerry and setter.

  14. If I can do it in less than an hour, then it must be on the easier side. Slow to get started, though with FOI ILL. 1d remained a challenge. I though it was to do with Garbo’s “I want to be alone” quote, with ALONE somehow changing heart.

    The homonyms HANDLE & REIGN definitely chestnuts over on the QC.

    LOI SNOWDROP, although it was DISPLACED PERSON which was the most troublesome. Didn’t really understand it but now see that it’s a good clue.


  15. 20 minutes or so. Found this straightforward enough, though a couple of answers – SCHEDULED and POSITION went in before I parsed them.

    FOI Acted
    LOI Position
    COD Apocrypha

  16. 33m 39s
    No difficulties but, like others, I wondered why our setter had to place the flower in the Rockies and not on home soil.
    CLOTHES LINE reminded me that a few months ago I bought a print by the artist Helga Stentzel from her ‘Household Surrealism’ series. You can see it on her website. It’s entitled, aptly, ‘Pegasus’.

  17. Well they’re not the roads less travelled here in the sticks. Do you have B roads ‘across the pond’?

      1. That’s what I thought. In which case ‘any’ rather than ‘many’ would have been more helpful in the clue.

    1. We do have B roads but they’re not called that, or anything much except when James Taylor sings about a country road. Since the advent of satnav all kinds of vehicles can end up on one by mistake.

      1. Some people used to call them “blue line roads” – because on printed maps the B road equivalents were often shown in blue, and cross-country drives with a partial goal of seeing something of the local colour (ie, finding the best roadside hamburger or barbecue) were called blue line tours.

        1. There was a U.S. best- seller from the 1980’s titled Blue Highways by William Least Half Moon that described his meanderings over various backroads .Very enjoyable.

  18. 36:41. Quite a tricky easy one today, if that’s a thing. I liked STIFF (I’m easily pleased). I invented OUT OF BOUNCE which made DISPLACED PERSON hard to get but once sorted both were good clues.

    Nice to see the name checks for L-PLATES (a star poster in the other place) and the Mighty Meldrew in the wordplay for 26ac. Is my memory playing tricks on me? or is Meldrew responsible for devising the name L-Plates?

      1. Despite his protestations … QC2056 blog … 25th January 2022 records the historic moment that horryd commented:

        “Might I suggest ‘l-plate’ as a user name and similar for your ‘avatar’. You can then update when you achieve say 11 or 12 minutes.”

    1. I came, I saw, I sort of conquered it!!

      I don’t know which is better – getting a name check in the biggie or being referred to as “a star poster” 😀

      Someone over at the Russian blog site suggested L-Plates when I was posting anonymously, in part because I couldn’t be bothered to sign up but also needed a name. I will look back and see if I can find it.

  19. 12 minutes but another AIRWAY – knew it seemed wrong when I bunged it in and forgot to go back.

    Liked DISPLACED PERSON a lot

    Thanks Jerry and setter

  20. 41 mins having held myself up in the NE by DEFINITE PRONOUN and carelessly bunging in APOCRAPHY, thereby leaving myself no chance with 5d. A PDM for CLOTHESLINE showed the error, PRONOUN changed to ARTICLE and I finally saw ABROAD. After that I was off to a sprint finish.

    An enjoyable outing that should have been at least ten mins less than it was.

    I liked ILL and LAUNCHER.

    Thanks Jerry and setter.

  21. 06:10, mostly Monday-ish with a first brief pause to consider the one-word LIGHTYEAR (then conclude it’s fine, as per the blog) and a second one as I, too, contemplated what Jimbo would have had to say about 22dn.

  22. Nice start to the week- held my self up with dry run with I thought would be wrong and so it proved with the anagram at 8d, LOI was clothesline.
    Didn’t seem as easy as a typical Monday to me.
    Thanks blogger and setter

    1. I tried out “dry run” – but it was clearly wrong because the anagram letters in 8dn did not include ‘n’.

  23. 10:13

    I nearly bunged in AIRWAY at 5d to slip in under 10 mins but I’ve learned the hard way that putting in an answer you can’t explain can often lead to disaster. That apart I though this fairly Mondayish.

    Regarding Jimbo the Ted, for those of you who don’t venture into Jumbo land see below an extract from my recent blog of July’s Jumbo 1566:

    “27 Fashionable sort of women’s garment — golly! (5,3)
    TEDDY BOY – TEDDY, BOY! How the late Jimbo would have loved to see teddy boy defined as a fashionable sort rather than a delinquent.”

    1. I was curious to what the dictionary said about Teddy Boys, and Chambers considers them both delinquent and fashionable:
      “An unruly adolescent, orig in the 1950s, affecting a dandyish style of dress reminiscent of Edward VII’s time”.

    2. Regardless of Jimbo’s views, I must say my memories of teddy boys definitely include the idea that they should not be messed with… which is still not quite the same as delinquent, mind you

      1. I was under 10 when they had their heyday and I think I’d have found any group of lads gathered in the streets intimidating however innocent their intentions may have been.

        1. My father (born 1913) called any youngster he didn’t like the look of ‘a teddy boy’ even in the 60s and 70s when they were obsolete!

          1. Reminds me of a character in the TV show Friday Night Dinner (which we all watched and enjoyed as a family) who refers to any youngsters he disapproves of as ‘punk rockers’.

            1. When The Beatles first appeared in about 1962 they were of course dismissed by my father as ‘teddy boys’. In spite of my protestations he continued to do so, and he was positively apoplectic by the time The Rolling Stones appeared who received the same tag, together with the term ‘Nancy boys’ if my memory serves me correctly. He would have some difficulty coping with the political correctness of today.
              Oh, and incidentally, during the 60s when I started growing my hair long (as was the fashion) he started calling me Gladys! Much to the amusement of everyone in the family and all my friends.

  24. Just under 40 minutes. I am normally just a QC solver, but tried this because of comments in the other blog that this might be do-able (many thanks, Tina!). I initially had “singular pronoun” for 11ac, and “out of bounce” for 8d, which held me up for a while.

    Many thanks

  25. No problems, 13 minutes, ending with A B ROAD – I agree, Jerry, hardly “not taken by many” even in Rutland. Nothing outstanding to note. Thanks for blog.

  26. 29 minutes, but after entering POSITION because it had to be and only parsing it afterwards. MERs at the randomness in 1dn and hailed = rained. I also thought of Jimbo.

  27. Nice and easy in 18 mins only held up at the end because I never thought of THOSE kind of boxers.

  28. Found it Mondayish, very quick. Right on the wavelength. A few exceptions – CLOTHESLINE was obvious, but not confident so it was LOI when I got back to it; started off with PRONOUN mentally pencilled in at the second half of 11ac like others above; FIRE-EATER an unlikely anagram; and ABROAD needed a few seconds thought. Everything else pretty well wrote itself in, including the big cringe on TED, reminding me of Jimbo.
    Really noticed the quality of the clues though, top-notch surface readings throughout.

  29. 5d reminded me of the old joke – American woman asked if she’s ever been abroad says I’ve been a broad all my life. I always thought L-PLATES were an excellent idea – too bad the US never adopted them. Nice one to start the week. RIP Jimbo. 15.59

  30. I certainly didn’t race through this, though there was nothing particularly tough about any of the clues. An enjoyable 40 mins in the garden with the morning cup of tea and, pleasantly, slightly fewer degrees Celsius than of late. Like our blogger, I question whether hail and rain are quite the same. I’m sure, from an early age, that one is worse than the other, as per the riddle:

    Q: What’s worse than raining cats and dogs?
    A: Hailing taxis.

    (Source: The Beano. Or The Dandy. Or both. About every 12-18 months throughout my childhood of the 1960s.)

    1. I checked out various sources to see if I could justify hail as rain or rain as hail. The closest I found was both were”precipitation”, one liquid, one solid. Perhaps Bob Dylan’s “hard rain” might link the terms figuratively!

  31. 13:11. Slowed slightly by instantly bunging in “dry run” at 14ac, with a mental note to come back to it later – fast is generally slower if you have no idea what you are doing. Like others, I heard the echo of an exasperated harumph from somewhere in Dorset at 22d. Gone but not forgotten.

  32. No problems with this – well Mondayish and none the worse for it! Funnily, I got 5D ABROAD, but parsed it as A (given) followed by BROAD as in ‘broad is the road that leads to damnation…’. It was obviously the right answer, so I skimmed over the fact that the ‘broad road’ is the one taken by many rather than by few… Did anyone else read it this way?

  33. Not as easy as last Monday’s, but not particularly difficult. A minor hold-up was an erroneous answer for 12d, which I entered as WASHINGLINE, but I suppose that can only be two words, so I can’t blame the setter for ambiguity.
    22 minutes, which counts as easier than average for me.

  34. 14.54 but felt it should have been done quicker. A mess up over spelling apocrypha didn’t help .
    Some nice clues, lightyear, clothesline and my COD displaced person.
    Thanks setter and blogger.

  35. 31:15

    Nothing ungettable, but felt I was on the slower side today. The Snitch suggests I should have been able to do this in 24 mins. Think if I’d remembered the anagrammed APOCRYPHA earlier, it would have made a difference.

  36. A comfortable canter from ACTED to MANDARIN, with a pause to smile at Dorset Jimbo’s probable reaction to 22d. Landed straight on the DEFINTE ARTICLE en route. 14:28. Thanks setter and Jerry.

  37. 9:38. No major hold-ups today. Same reaction to the Ted reference as everyone else.

  38. 10’19”

    Nice friendly and rigorously clued Monday puzzle. No major sticking points, though I spent quite a while trying to parse AIRWAY before the penny dropped. My favourite clue is 3 Down, because it’s actually raining outside for the first time since June! If anyone is interested in such things, APOCRYPHA derives from Ancient Greek, meaning ‘hidden things’.

  39. On my first ever post to the QC this morning I was so pleased with my PB there (I’m still a crossword novice) that I said I would have a go at the Cryptic. I did it!! The only clue I couldn’t parse was ‘abroad’ so thanks to the blogger for the explanation. And thanks to the setter for a gentle introduction to the Cryptic😋

  40. Can anyone explain why ‘on the contrary’ is needed in 10c?!?! ‘L’ drinking ‘stranger’ is surely enough??? We must be missing something!!!

    1. Because it’s “stranger” drinking (taking in) L, not the other way round.
      More elliptically, of course, it could be an L-drinking stranger, but I think it would be unfair to drop the hyphen, if not the indefinite article.

  41. Can only estimate a time at circa 40 minutes as constant interruptions make the clock irrelevant. LOI was AIRWAY which I was unhappy with, thinking it was a poor clue! Now I know it wasn’t, and I really should have thought it through that bit longer. I also wasn’t helped by having APOCRAPHY for a while which made the solving of 5dn even tougher.
    COD to 2dn, a term I am very familiar with from my golf playing days, having paid many a visit there!

  42. Most enjoyable. The tired kangaroo takes the biscuit for me.
    I biffed DRY RUN for 14a, but of course that made no sense at all.
    Fairly gentle. I suspect sterner tests are to come later in the week.

  43. Took around two hours to complete, of course not a clean solve but only my second attempt at the biggie. Sent here on advice of Tina and Merlin, the latter suggesting I would (indeed) enjoy 17D !!

    Before I reached that 16A – the HANDLE/HANDEL combination went in smoothly reminding me of this classic 3-2-1 clip …. https://youtu.be/k1TLso4Hwrc … truly awful 😀

    Four aids on my solve:
    – Having spotted the anagram in 1A, I put in APOCRAPHY having never heard the word, so looked it up and corrected.
    – I checked at about 1hr30 as needed to go off and do stuff. That highlighted an issue with my attempt at DEFINIng … and a rethink immediately produced DEFINITE-ARTICLE and then a slew of answers followed.
    – Same again half hour later when I was down to last 4-5 and that highlighted it wasn’t at-END-OF. Quickly correctly and finally unravelled the LAUNCHER anagram.
    – Last issue was AIRWAY like others. I just bunged it in, as knew I could have another go if wrong!


    Thanks to Jerry for the blog and detailed explanations 🙂

    LOI ABROAD but only because I had misspelt APOCRYPHA initially.

    Started badly and thought I wasn’t going to finish but came back to it in the evening and everything dropped into place. Thanks to setter for a nice crossword.

  45. Tried this, having finished the QC quickly, and, on balance, wish I hadn’t. I spent too long on POSITION and DEFINITE ARTICLE (which was a PRONOUN), and put them in unparsed. Reading the blog (thanks, Jerry!), I see they are good clues!
    But was very unhappy with 18a which I parsed as an anagram of UNCLEAR with an H at the end, giving RELAUNCH. Difficulty with crossers forced an eventual rethink; I think that was a bad clue, but it seems like I’m in a minority of one, so I’ll sulk alone.
    To be fair, STRANGLER and SCHEDULED were great clues.

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