Times Cryptic Jumbo 1550 – 16 April 2022. So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish

Hi all.  No time for this as I solved on my phone in bed with 40 or so winks in the middle.  I thought it a brilliant puzzle with plenty of clever, cunning and well-disguised definitions.  It was also a crossword for crossword lovers, with some self-referential crosswordy content.  I didn’t find it easy but did find it free of any frustrating moments of being really stuck, despite a few unknowns or semi-knowns.  Far too much good stuff to list here.  Many thanks setter!

Definitions are underlined in the clues below.  In the explanations, quoted indicators are in italics, explicit [deletions] are in square brackets, and I’ve capitalised and emboldened letters which appear in the ANSWER.  For clarity, I omit most link words and some juxtaposition indicators.

1 Blue stone circles to incorporate flint in middle (5)
LAPIS LAPS (circles) going around (to incorporate) the central letter of (.. in the middle) flInt
4 One’s RADA friend ushered in before noon (7)
ACRONYM CRONY (friend) put inside (ushered in) AM (before noon)
8 Instrument initially supplied with fish from trawler? (9)
CASTANETS — The first letter of (initially) Supplied is next to (with) CAST A NET (fish from trawler?)
13 Mountain animal in North America on level (9)
PARNASSUS ASS (animal) in between N (North) and US (America), all next to (on) PAR (level)
14 Men in retreat, Dicky for one has to abandon front in corrupt constituency (6,7)
ROTTEN BOROUGH OR (men) reversed (in retreat), then aTTENBOROUGH (Dicky for one) needs the first letter deleted (has to abandon front)
15 Intelligent swimmer home after hard trudge back (7)
DOLPHIN IN (home) after the reversal of (… back) H (hard) and PLOD (trudge)
16 Technique required in piece written with quavers? (7)
TREMOLO — A cryptic definition
17 About to crack the clues: determination needed (7)
RESOLVE RE (about) + SOLVE (to crack the clues)
18 Cool with literal cryptic anagrams designed to avoid offence (11,7)
POLITICALLY CORRECT COOL with LITERAL CRYPTIC anagrams to give the answer.  It is certainly rare to find anagram used as an anagram indicator.  A cool literal cryptic anagram indeed!
21 2 is just too much for fairy (4)
PERI — 2d is PERIl, which is just too much for this answer, so we take the last letter off
23 Those signalling when soldiers could proceed to invade shelled area? (3,6)
EGG TIMERS — A cryptic definition
25 Locks procedure trapping one in harsh and unpleasant Jobcentre? (6)
HAIRDO — Here we are confining (trapping) I (one) in HARD (harsh and unpleasant) and O (jObcentre?)
26 Make joke about time needed to produce identification (3,3)
DOG TAG DO (make) + GAG (joke) around (about) T (time)
28 Old system in Japanese film is generic, strangely? (6,6)
ANCIEN REGIME In ANIME (Japanese film) is an anagram of (… strangely) GENERIC
30 Secret affair an elusive universal presence (4,6)
DARK MATTER DARK (secret) + MATTER (affair)
33 Old college article is seen by male as eg Hindu doctrine? (10)
POLYTHEISM POLY (old college) + THE (article) + IS + M (male)
34 One prepared to provide care for small charge? (6,6)
FOSTER PARENT — Another cryptic definition.  I have to admit I thought the most natural interpretation of the surface was the one actually required.  Hence I was misled!
37 Tyre tracks partially traced back, arriving at main road (6)
ARTERY — Part of the reversal of (… partially traced back) tYRE TRAcks
39 Gambling perhaps without ace, so folding (6)
PLYING PL[a]YING (gambling perhaps) without A (ace)
40 Slight anger associated with malfunctioning iPads (9)
DISPARAGE RAGE (anger) next to (associated with) an anagram of (malfunctioning) IPADS
42 Frost no longer seen, the fellow having played Morse? (4)
THAW — Two definitions, the first referring to the late John Thaw
43 Ordinary hybrid, one no good, or one done up like zebra? (10,8)
PEDESTRIAN CROSSING — A charade of PEDESTRIAN (ordinary), CROSS (hybrid), I (one) and NG (no good)
46 King George, one defined by appetite, having increased size? (7)
GREATER GR (King George) + EATER (one defined by appetite)
47 Throttle needed where rubbish blocks entrance (7)
GAROTTE ROT (rubbish) is inside (blocks) GATE (entrance)
48 Embarrassed when no professional leader at News? (7)
ASHAMED AS (when) + HAM (no professional) + ED (leader at News?)
50 In London, landmark and singular article put on hold (7,6)
NELSONS COLUMN COLUMN (singular article) following NELSON (hold)
51 Your compiler can be silenced, not susceptible to change (9)
IMMUTABLE IM MUTABLE (your compiler can be silenced)
52 Expression silver worker used for brawling woman (9)
TERMAGANT TERM (expression) + AG (silver) + ANT (worker)
53 Sea nymph previously nameless provided with an identity (7)
OCEANID O[n]CE (previously) without N (nameless) + ID (an identity)
54 Summons the entire population in Lewis? (5)
CALLS ALL (the entire population) in CS (Lewis?)
1 Order including monarchs potentially applied to ER (11)
LEPIDOPTERA — An anagram of (potentially) APPLIED TO ER
2 Two school lessons taken by learner in danger (5)
PERIL PE and RI (two school lessons) + L (learner)
3 Present with stage having collapsed – film produced for fewer dollars? (9,7)
SPAGHETTI WESTERN PRESENTWITH STAGE anagrammed (having collapsed)
4 As more highly ranked, soldiers dropped in line (7)
ARSENIC SENI[or] (more highly ranked) without OR (soldiers dropped) goes in ARC (line).  I’m usually quite good at spotting chemical symbols as definitions but this one got me!  Finally twigging it enabled my last one in, PARNASSUS
5 Makes new home, having thing about Yorkshire market town (9)
RESETTLES RES (thing, Latin) around (about) SETTLE (Yorkshire market town)
6 Tender lines by Frost quoted in simple verse (7,5)
NURSERY RHYME NURSE (tender) + RY (lines) + a homophone of (… quoted) RIME (frost)
7 Mice emptied place for grain left over in big city (10)
METROPOLIS MicE without inner letters (emptied) + the reversal of (… over) SILO (place for grain) and PORT (left)
8 Cynical to start with concerning party dogma (5)
CREDO — The first letter of (… to start with) Cynical + RE (concerning) + DO (party)
9 Sinking boat reportedly shadowed in dock (8)
SUBTRACT SUB (sinking boat) + a homophone of (reportedly) TRACKED (shadowed)
10 Annoyed by anagrams at first? That’s not down to solvers (6)
ACROSS CROSS (annoyed) by the initial letter of (… at first) Anagrams)
11 Thrown out, but Nellie irrepressible (9)
EBULLIENT — An anagram of (thrown out) BUT NELLIE
12 School chorister accommodating the French film director (11)
SCHLESINGER SCH (school) and SINGER (chorister) around (accommodating) LE (the, French)
19 Coherent infantryman going into pub (7)
LOGICAL GI (infantryman) going into LOCAL (pub)
20 Brilliant point in tirade about charity sent up (7)
RADIANT RANT (tirade) around (about) the reversal of (… sent up) AID (charity)
22 Limited number catch on, ill at ease when manipulated (5,11)
LOCAL ANAESTHETIC CATCH ON, ILL AT EASE when anagrammed (manipulated)
24 Attention Scots hooligan deserved (6)
EARNED EAR (attention) + NED (Scots hooligan)
27 Drink in street with son in women’s clothes (6)
SKIRTS KIR (drink) in ST (street) + S (son)
29 One’s captivated by set the French needed for ballet (7)
GISELLE IS (one’s) inside (captivated by) GEL (set) + LE (the, French)
31 Those people getting silver? One lot bringing gold (3,4)
THE MAGI THEM (those people) + AG (silver) + I (one)
32 Race such as this never having close finish? (4-8)
LONG-DISTANCE — Another cryptic definition
33 Spies coming together to protect English royal line (11)
PLANTAGENET PLANT and AGENT (spies coming together) going around (to protect) E (English)
35 Actor man seated in gallery sees one such as Druantia (4-7)
TREE-GODDESS TREE (actor) + DES (man) seated in GODS (gallery).  Herbert Beerbohm still refuses to leave the crossword stage
36 Press entertained by one successful old writer (6,4)
VICTOR HUGO HUG (press) inside (entertained by) VICTOR (one successful) and O (old)
38 Clerk touring French department picked up sales agent (9)
TRAVELLER TELLER (clerk) around (touring) the reversal of (picked up) VAR (French department)
40 Book by food shop on wine-producing plant (9)
DANDELION DAN (Book, of the Bible) + DELI (food shop) + ON
41 State banks are reorganising (8)
NEBRASKA BANKS ARE anagrammed (reorganising)
44 Set up marine area with new weapons? (7)
REARMED REAR (set up) + MED (marine area)
45 Saint needs gypsy man to provide biological tissue (6)
STROMA ST (saint) + ROMA (gypsy man)
47 Good media personality shows spirit (5)
GHOST G (good) + HOST (media personality)
49 Male murder victim’s name (5)
MABEL M (male) + ABEL (murder victim)

5 comments on “Times Cryptic Jumbo 1550 – 16 April 2022. So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish”

  1. Several DNKs: Druantia, STROMA, THAW, NED (actually, that may be a DNR(emember); I think it may have appeared here once before). No idea what Dicky was doing, even after solving the clue (well, not solving it, since I had no idea etc., but writing the solution). I notice we have two examples of ‘the French’, 12d and 29d. Is a LAP circular? A number of nice clues: ARSENIC (I was fooled by the As, too), LOCAL ANAESTHETIC, ANCIEN REGIME (took me forever to parse), POLITICALLY CORRECT, ACRONYM.
    1. A ‘circular tour’ for example is not in a geometric circle, it just starts out and goes back roughly to where it began.

      But the word in the clue is ‘circles’, and ‘circle’ as a verb can be defined (e.g. by Lexico) as: Move all the way around (someone or something), especially more than once. That seems a pretty good description of ‘lap’.

      Edited at 2022-04-30 05:43 am (UTC)

  2. I was annoyed to find this morning that I was missing the answer at 8ac. I lost sight of it somewhere along the way.

    The wretched TREE had been missing from crosswords for ages and I had assumed that the editor had at last placed a ban on him since he’s been dead for 105 years and he was really only of limited importance in his day. His acting work survives in only 6 films all made before the Great War. Since this puzzle appeared he has also appeared in a 15×15.

    1. I seem to recall that Tree was the, or a, founder of RADA, which conveniently appears in 4ac. I mainly remember him as Max Beerbohm’s (much) older stepbrother.
  3. I found I’d only done 86% of this puzzle so finished it off before coming here, with a total time of 46:44. Sadly I didn’t spend enough time on 54a and discarded CALLS for CELTS. Dope! I had to look up Druantia before I could add to TREE in 35d. Apart from those 2, PEDESTRIAN CROSSING, LOCAL ANAESTHSETIC, PLYING, LONG DISTANCE, FOSTER PARENT and LOI ACRONYM were this morning’s entries. Nice enough puzzle. Thanks setter and Kitty.

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