Times Cryptic 28940


Solving time: 22 minutes

This was one of the easiest 15×15 puzzles to solve and blog that I can remember. If I hadn’t parsed and marked up each clue as I solved I would easily have finished in 15 minutes.

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]. “Aural wordplay” is in quotation marks. I usually omit all reference to juxtaposition indicators unless there is a specific point that requires clarification.

1 Bow has only one old bus station? (4)
STO{o}P  (bow) [only one old  – o]. A DBE, hence the question mark. One tends to think of bus stops as being in the street, but of course they are also in bus stations, although there they are likely to be called ‘bays’.
4 Chaotic little dog without lead gets disowned, sadly (6-4)
{p}UP (little dog) [without lead], anagram [sadly] of DISOWNED
9 Third best exam mark secured by horribly loathsome kid in your class? (10)
C (third best exam mark) contained [secured] by anagram [horribly] of LOATHSOME
10 Shred leaves with front part of rake (4)
TEA (leaves), R{ake} [front part of…]
11 Coat mostly stuffed with good wool (6)
ANORA{k} (coat) [mostly] containing [stuffed with] G (good)
12 Deeply, oddly enlightened state (8)
D{e}E{p}L{y} [oddly], AWARE (enlightened)
14 Way to tuck into excellent drink (4)
ST (way) contained by [to tuck into] A1 (excellent)
15 Advertiser’s rate for feature during sci-fi show? (10)
HYPER’S (advertiser’s), PACE (rate)
17 A respectable, short debtor’s note ultimately proves damaging (10)
PER (a), NIC{e} (respectable) [short], IOU (debtor’s note), {prove}S [ultimately]
20 Turn to put out what prisoners do (4)
EMIT (put out) reversed [turn]
21 Alarm about family’s use of certain cosmetics? (8)
SCARE (alarm) containing [about] KIN (family)
23 Motorway stopped being repaired (6)
M (motorway), ENDED (stopped)
24 Religious leader shortly after midnight taking in mass (4)
1AM (shortly after midnight) containing [taking in] M (mass)
25 Prudish, naff, fancy idea regularly ignored before closer scrutiny (5,5)
PRIM (prudish), {n}A{f}F {f}A{n}C{y} I{d}E{a} [regularly ignored]
26 Leader’s position in group’s last run of gigs (10)
{grou}P [’s last], RESIDENCY (run of gigs). Collins: residency – a regular series of concerts by a band or singer at one venue.
27 As a result, work unit introduces nothing (4)
ERG (work unit), 0 (nothing). Latin for ‘therefore’.
2 Chaps keen to set out computer jargon (11)
Anagram [set out] of CHAPS KEEN TO
3 Expert movement garnering support (9)
PRO (expert), MOTION (movement)
4 In Paris, a large centre for teens remains free (7)
UN (in Paris ‘a’), L (large), {te}E{ns} [centre], ASH (remains)
5 Entertainer who might generate a sudden impact? No (5-2,8)
Anagram [generate] A SUDDEN IMPACT NO. The first word of the clue and the enumeration gave this away immediately.
6 Resident properly involved in bloody uprising (7)
WELL (properly), contained by [involved in] RED (bloody) reversed [uprising]. Not often seen on its own, but in terms such as ‘city dweller’ and ‘cave dweller’.
7 Love huge end of a series (5)
0 (love), MEGA (huge)
8 Language that is somewhat hidden or secretive (5)
Hidden in [somewhat] {hidde}N OR SE{cretive}
13 One in regiment deployed for horsey event (4,7)
ACE (one) contained by [in] anagram [deployed] of REGIMENT
16 Ruler in crown drinking last drop of Barolo wine (9)
PATE (crown) containing [drinking] {barl}O [last drop of] + TENT (wine)
18 Acclaimed cellist initially passed on a track (7)
C{ellist} [initially], LAPPED (passed on a track)
19 Brief problem supported by Queen (7)
SUM (problem), MARY (Queen)
21 Stint requiring months in spring (5)
M (months) contained by [in] SKIP (spring)
22 Stupid way programme ends? (5)

52 comments on “Times Cryptic 28940”

  1. Easy though this may have been, I ended taking forever to sort out the last clues because I had HYPERSPEED. My first guess for that clue was to biff HYPERSPACE, and I wish I had, but SPACE ≠ ‘rate’ while SPEED = ‘rate’. I failed to lift and separate and that cost me probably 10 minutes!

  2. Quite easy indeed! But still entertaining. HYPERSPACE got a laugh. I ended with PRIMA FACIE, one I had to look at twice.

    Solutions flowed quickly for me. As easy as any since the start of April when I started doing Times Cryptics daily. Very much getting used to the jargon after SMH daily for 60 years.
    Thanks to Jack for the parsing.

  4. 18:39
    LOI STOP, which I never parsed. Ditto for PRESIDENCY, not knowing RESIDENCY. Biffed STAND-UP, never bothered to parse. Parsed RACE MEETING & POTENTATE post-submission. Didn’t care for nice=respectable or acclaimed=clapped. I liked HYPERSPACE & UNLEASH.

  5. So easy that I simply gave up after 10 minutes, having spent more than half of that time becalmed in the SW corner. I failed mainly because of PERNICIOUS, which might then have led me to CLAPPED. PRIMA FACIE also failed to jump out and shout “BOO!”

  6. 21 minutes with LOI PERNICIOUS. COD to INANE. I was thinking more of a Preston Bus Station type of building than a metal pole in the pavement and was very disappointed in 1a, even if it is the ugliest building in the country. Quite an easy puzzle. Thank you Jack and setter.

    1. It has a certain brutal charm 🙂

      Isn’t it a listed building these days as being one of the ‘finest’ examples of brutalism?

  7. Sickness broke him. Impatient, he cursed at first, but Mended
    Being anointed and all;
    (Felix Randal, GM Hopkins)

    25 mins, leisurely, pre-brekker. All fairly straight forward, yet interesting. I liked the first ones across and down. I think what slowed me up was wanting “acclaimed cellist” to be new wordplay for Ma.
    Ta setter and J.

    1. Thanks for pointing me towards Felix Randall, a poem I was unaware of- very interesting read.

  8. Yes I found it easy also but for some reason I still took 26 minutes. Was very surprised as I thought I had flown through it, but the clock said otherwise.
    Thanks Jack and setter

  9. Despite being very tired I managed this in 25 minutes, and my main problem was a problem of my own making with 18d. [Very mild spoilers for yesterday’s Gruaniad follow] In yesterday’s (extremely tough for a Monday) Guardian puzzle there was a reference to a specific acclaimed cellist whose name began with a C and of whom I’d never heard. I’d already forgotten his name again by this morning and I spent about five minutes being absolutely sure the answer to 18d must be the same person, thus leading myself completely up the garden path and away from the quite obvious answer. D’oh.

  10. Steady solve, finishing in the NW with STOP, eventually got the parsing.

    16’24”, thanks jack and setter.

  11. Yes, on the easier side, 29 mins. A few in the SW held me up a bit, PERNICIOUS, CLAPPED, PRESIDENCY &, LOI, SKIMP.

    All good fun nd lots of juicy anagrams for me to doodle with. I liked TECHNOSPEAK & HYPERSPACE.

    Thanks Jack and setter.

  12. 13:52
    I started in the SW having failed on first reading of 1A, and that gave me a good foothold to gradually work my way around the grid.

    No real problems aside from always being slow to see “a” as “per”.

    All parsed and no unknowns so in my book that means it was an easy one. Enjoyable all the same though so thanks to both.

  13. 11:15. I took the time to parse everything as I went or I would have been faster. It may be a chestnut but I enjoyed INANE. Thanks Jackkt and setter.

  14. 5:43. On the wavelength today. I finished in just a few seconds over 5m, and having narrowly missed that target I took a few seconds to check my answers. As a result I spotted the fact that I had put in RACE MEEGING and avoided a pink square.

  15. Just under 15 minutes, with no real problems. Might have struggled with POTENTATE, but luckily I vaguely remembered tent wine from before.

    I’m just glad we don’t have to pronounce PRIMA FACIE…

    Thanks setter and blogger.

    FOI Tear
    LOI Clapped
    COD Skincare

  16. 15.06. Not too demanding but I did put stop and pernicious in without parsing them. Per been used for a couple of times recently so I should have seen that one at least.
    Still, alls well etc….

    Hyperspace my COD when I finally worked it out!

  17. 18′ before going to bed last night so very straightforward for me. Only INANE left unparsed which having seen the mechanics makes it COD for me. Looks like the dog will get an earlier walk… Thanks Jackkt and setter

  18. 11.25, not far off as fast as I can go. PERNICIOUS was my last in, and has prompted a query for seasoned companions. I can’t recall A giving PER in my early years of solving the Times, and wonder if it’s a relatively recent phenomenon introduced (perniciously?) by one setter and avidly taken up by others until it has become relatively commonplace. In the same clue, I’m mildly surprised that Chambers gives -um- niceness to respectable = NICE, but it does.
    Otherwise a straight through solve if you ignore the fact that the innocent STOP required checkers: ok, that bow.

  19. 16:34

    A certain amount of biffing then checking to see if the biff fit the cryptic today – had about five left after ten mins – POTENTATE/TIME crossing, PERNICIOUS/CLAPPED crossing and the standalone STOP. The last of these was my LOI as though it seemed the obvious answer, I couldn’t parse it, eventually bunging it in and hoping for the best. Plenty to enjoy though.

    Thanks Jack and setter

  20. Straightforward. Despite working in tech and living in silicon valley, I don’t think I’ve ever heard the word TECHNOSPEAK, although once I realized it was going to end in SPEAK from the checkers it was not a problem. Maybe it’s like fish and water, or that guy in Molière who was thrilled to discover he was speaking prose. I guess I’m talking technospeak all day! Like some others, my LOI was STOP requiring both checkers before I saw what was going on.

  21. 37 mins but I forgot to stop the timer at some point. Yes very easy, but STOP SKIMP and OMEGA held me up when they shouldn’t have done.

  22. 19:09

    Mostly easy, but PER for A got me again for a few minutes.

    Ended up in the SE with POTENTATE and finally MEETING.

    Thanks all

  23. Wavelength issues here. I knew it wasn’t difficult, but for some reason made hard work of it, especially in the SW corner where I struggled to see SKIMP and IMAM for ages. I also had HYPERSPEED at first, which made things unnecessarily complicated. Didn’t parse STOP. A hard won 52 mins.

  24. 41 minutes, the slowest reported time here by some margin. I couldn’t unscramble the anagrams without most crossers in place, took a while to shift PRIMA DONNA at 25a and I was eventually left staring at 1a as my LOI, having no idea how the wordplay for STOP worked. Should have done better.

  25. I finished in 30.20, but felt I should have been a good deal faster. I got a little bogged down by initially making silly mistakes like putting in PROMOTING for 3dn, and thus spending far too long trying to make sense of 17ac. Solving PERNICIOUS alerted me to the mistake, but I must have spent four or five minutes on solving my LOI CLAPPED.

  26. 26:20. Not that easy. Quite a few seemed tricky – eg HYPERSPACE, PRIMA FACIE, TECHNOSPEAK, PERNICIOUS – and I was surprised to come in under the half hour.
    FOI 1ac STOP where I took it that a bus stop – the pole on the pavement – might well be regarded as a “station”. LOI PRESIDENCY, taking ages to make sense of the “run of gigs”. I liked CLAPPED

  27. 23:35 – quite slow for a relatively easy puzzle, with CLAPPED and PRIMA FACIE causing most of the hold up. I knew the latter only in the legal sense. I can see the connection now, but it wasn’t enough to get me over the line until all the crossers were in.

  28. 21.30, but with a careless LOI, PRIMA FACIA. After a rapid start I became bogged down with several clues refusing to yield. By the time I got to 25a I’d become fatigued and failed to parse it correctly. Drat! Thanks setter and Jack.

  29. 1a STOP; as kapietro above I assumed that station=stop, as stopping is what what happens at a station by def.
    17a PERrnicious, took a little while to correctly place the per=a.
    2d NHO technospeak, but Tbabble I have used often. Not in Cheating Machine (added), and Wiktionary has technospeak=T-babble.
    26a (p)RESIDENCY passed me by completely; biffed. DK RESIDENCY=run of gigs but didn’t solve the clue.
    5d Stand-Up C, biffed, never found the anagram. DOH!

  30. Hit submit at 22.21, but found that I had not entered STOP. I was going to go back to it to think about the parsing.

  31. Last 3 weekday puzzles – today 23:52 (78), yesterday 10:31 (73), Friday 21:57 (132). SNITCH in brackets – now tell me wavelength doesn’t exist. 🙂

    Not sure why, but it just wouldn’t flow. A = PER is one that doesn’t stick in my head for example. POTENTATE LOI NHO wine = TENT before, sack yes, hock yes, red yes. Must file away.


  32. In homage to the late and much lamented Richard Rogan, might The Times be persuaded to reveal his identity when publishing his last crossword?

  33. A lot of HYPERSPEED’s today. Is hyperspeed actually a term used in sci-fi, excluding video games?

    Hyperspace, hyperdrive, warpspeed…heard of them, but hyperspeed?

  34. Thought I was doing the QC at the start, as the answers came very quickly, but then ground to a halt and struggled a bit with the last few obstinate clues. 1ac had to be STOP but I only understood why on reading the blog. Some of the anagrams were very good. Took an age with 18dn, thinking it must involve Pablo Casals, until the penny dropped.
    FOI – TEAR
    Thanks to jackkt and other contributors.

  35. 16: 04 with a typo.

    What Jack said regarding difficulty but with a fair amount of wit; I liked HYPERSPACE, PERNICIOUS and PRIMA FACIE.

    Thanks to Jack and the setter

  36. Well this was my fastest for a few days but it did not flow, floundered about in 28 mins. All along I had that feeeling “this is easier than Inam making it”. Sure we all get that

  37. I forgot the a = PER trick which held me up for too long on 17a. The other two that caused problems were CLAPPED and PRIMA FACIE, where I had to check the letters carefully to make sure it was the correct phrase, as I didn’t know what it meant. I was trying to find a cellist, or a word for ‘acclaimed’ as an adjective rather than a verb, and was getting very frustrated when the penny finally dropped with ‘passed’. Other than that, it was definitely easier than yesterday’s Quickie!

  38. Whenever an American state is an answer I always wonder how many Americans would get an English county as an answer! Suffolk for example. Most Americans don’t even know the names of all their own states!

  39. Got held up with potentate as I was sure that I was looking for the name of a wine. COD pernicious. LOI was inane and really annoyed that I could not see the parsing when I put it in.
    For me I would describe this as an accessible puzzle – 20minutes 23 for me

  40. I’m a dweller on the threshold. Van the Man. Mystic twaddle but good song. 23’12” so not a great performance, but it’s late. Many thanks.

  41. You know you’re on Big Puzzle when “tent” is clued as “wine” and the blog doesn’t even bother to explain it, assuming everyone knows. Crikey. POTENTATE therefore my LOI by some distance, after finally cracking HYPERSPACE. Now enlightened by Collins!

    Thanks Jack.

  42. Very enjoyable.
    LOI POTENTATE (no idea about TENT=wine)
    COD CLAPPED (like almost everyone else here I was thinking about cellists; clever misdirection)

  43. About 30 minutes and indeed very easy, although it took me a while to get started. My LOI was SKIMP, since my first guess, STINT, was obviously not going to work. Otherwise, not much to say about this.

  44. 14.07

    Even later than Hydrochoos so happy it was a gentle one and just snuck in the top 100. For the first time I spotted A =PER. Just the other hundreds of rules to remember now 🙂


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