Times Cryptic No 27294 – Saturday, 09 March 2019. Show me the money.

Posted on Categories Weekend Cryptic
Welcome, travellers. This puzzle will take us through Germany, Italy, Bulgaria, and a Pacific island, on our way to South America. We’ll need lots of foreign money!

The puzzle wasn’t particularly hard, but featured lots of diversity. I thought it had many clever clues. So much so that it’s hard to name an exception. Many clues required thought, but the clue of the day has to be 13dn with its punning literary reference. I wrote it in but couldn’t parse it until I eventually appealed to my wife. Thanks to the setter for a very enjoyable puzzle.

Clues are in blue, with definitions underlined. Answers are in BOLD CAPS, then wordplay. (ABC*) means ‘anagram of ABC’. Deletions are in [square brackets].

1 Want party to exchange leaders? That’ll bring hostile reaction! (8)
BACKLASH: swap leading letters of LACK BASH. Nice to be spared mention of Dr Spooner.

5 Volume four including books English offered as promised (6)
VOTIVE: V=volume, OT=a set of books commonly mentioned in crosswords, IV=four, E=English. I knew “votive” had religious significance, but not that it meant this.

8 One swoops near ground, moving left to right (3)
OWL: start with LOW=near ground, and follow the instructions!

9 Consent for each assignment (10)

10 No longer confined, holding on for advocate? (8)

11 Girl brought to mark that locates treasure chest (6)
THORAX: THORA is “Miss Saturday” this week. X marks the location. Make sure you separate “treasure” from “chest”.

12 Australia finally getting spinner on (4)
ATOP: add TOP to [Australi]A. The definition is almost invisible! And no, not a cricketing clue.

14 Came down after snooze, subdued (10)

17 What one has to go on is fresh and amusing (5,5)
GREEN LIGHT: GREEN=fresh, LIGHT=amusing. Definition relates to traffic signals.

20 Authentic quartet to be seen in Liechtenstein (4)
ECHT: hidden answer.

23 Animal, better left in two areas, sent west (6)
ALPACA: LCAP=CAP / L[eft] “sent west”. Top and tail it with 2 x A=area.

24 Decline to accept drink, having answer ready for Bulgarian (8)
STOTINKA: SINK=decline, “accepting” TOT=drink, then A=answer. As it happened, I’d just seen the same answer in the previous week’s Jumbo with an almost identical type of clue, so this was a “gimme”. Definition is Bulgarian currency.

25 Motorway route cut short as data misread (10)
AUTOSTRADA: (ROUT- AS DATA*), “cut short” and “misread”.

26 Works informer shifting Republican to the centre (3)
ART: RAT with R=Republican moved as instructed.

27 Impulsive thing in north going after new money (6)
NEURON: N=new, EURO=money, N=north. Neutrons transmit nerve impulses.

28 Sit and adore rippling body (8)
ASTEROID: (SIT ADORE*) “rippling”.

1 Recoil from report about distraught Romeo (9)
BOOMERANG: BANG=report, around “distraught” (ROMEO*). Some boomerangs, not all, do return  but I would dispute that they recoil. Alas, it’s in the dictionary!

2 Music from revolutionary agent welcomed to state ball (7)
CALYPSO: YPS=“revolutionary” SPY, in CAL O (State, ball).

3 Raised in family like some wild animal (6)

4 Tiger seen abroad where lion holds sway? (9)

5 Six men accommodating model tourist (7)
VISITOR: SIT “accommodated” by VI=six, OR=other ranks.

6 Fossil — see black one with dull exterior (9)
TRILOBITE: LO=see, B=black, all inside TRITE=dull.

7 Excellent plonk given at raves (7)
VINTAGE: (GIVEN AT*) “raves”.

13 Rhymester‘s introduction to The Pit and the Pendulum say (9)
POETASTER: The Pit and the Pendulum is a short story written by Edgar Allan Poe, so an introduction to it might be a Poe “taster”.

15 Islanders and old volunteers whacked Scotsmen (9)
TAHITIANS: TA=old volunteers, HIT, IANS=(certain) Scotsmen.

16 Action needed about land taken away (9)

18 Rare vacant tenancy agreement — it’s free! (7)
RELEASE: R[ar]E is “vacant”, followed by LEASE.

19 Appears following trouble over affair (7)
LIAISON: LIA=AIL “over”, IS ON=appears (at the Alhambra, say).

21 Tax in one country initially raised money abroad (7)
CENTAVO: VAT in ONE, followed by C[ountry] … all “raised”, since this is a down clue. It’s a currency unit, mainly in South American countries.

22 Gunners captured by amphibious creatures mounting low attack (6)
STRAFE: RA in EFTS “mounting”.

19 comments on “Times Cryptic No 27294 – Saturday, 09 March 2019. Show me the money.”

  1. I was also helped with STOTINKA by its inclusion in a previous puzzle. From being a total unknown, it’s now engraved on my brain. POE-TASTER was a light bulb moment when I saw how it worked. I had the answer for a while before I believed it. An enjoyable puzzle. 22:30. Thanks setter and Bruce.
  2. A damned good thing we’d just had STOTINKA; at the time I thought that Bulgarian currency hardly ranks as GK. I thought ‘body’ a rather poor definition for ASTEROID. In 16d, is ‘needed’ needed?
    I would think that AN introduction to the Poe story would not count as a Poe taster, while THE introduction would; a Poe taster presumably being a sample of Poe’s writing. The clue, being ambiguous, avoids this problem.
  3. 10:10. I knew STOTINKA from past puzzles, including but not limited to that Jumbo. I biffed POETASTER – another word I only know from these things – without understanding the wordplay. I don’t know much about Poe. CENTAVO was also unfamiliar but the wordplay was kind.
    1. Sadly I thought the wordplay was very kind, so I plumped for CENTAXO, which sounded just as plausible to my ears as the unknown CENTAVO. Oops!
  4. 33 minutes. There are some songs and some comedians you’d rather not be reminded of. LOI was actually THORAX. I think that was because for me there’ll only ever be one Thora, the brilliant Thora Hird, and was she ever young enough to be a girl? I started out easily enough and was going like a house on fire until the south-east, the place to find a wunch of bankers exchanging money. I’ve never been to Bulgaria but a vague memory of a previous puzzle meant I eventually constructed STOTINKA. CENTAVO was at least known. The POE-TASTER was definitely my COD. It’s looking increasingly like we’re going to see the premature burial of my user name too in The Fall of the House of BWFC. Don’t put on any airs when you’re down on Rue Morgue Avenue. The prospect of bankruptcy in whatever form it takes seems to be getting to me. Thank you B and setter.
    1. Regardless of the fate of the club, don’t ever consider changing your moniker. If you have nothing to look forward to, you have some wonderful memories to look back on.
      1. Yep. It’s 1953, with smell of Woodbine cigarettes in the air, and the brass band playing Blaze Away and The Washington Post.
  5. For me this was a stinka as I ran out of money in the SE Did not know either currency. Capvato was possible for a time. Also failed to get STRAFE.
    Commiserations to BW whose team has run out of money in the NW.
    I am off to Deepdale today hoping for great things.
        1. Yep, I wish the avatars were clearer too. It’s Tom Finney and Nat Lofthouse training at Stamford Bridge for an England game at Wembley.
  6. 14:40 and plenty of fun along the way. Glad I had done that Jumbo so knew STOTINKA. I also knew POETASTER from a previous crossword. NEURON my LOI. I liked GREEN LIGHT but COD to ATOP.
  7. I found this to be at the easier end and today’s even easier. That is not a criticism. Thanks all.
  8. ….Romeo, but I was far from distraught on completing this cracker of a puzzle.

    Following its appearance in the Jumbo (already knew it) I managed to play STOTINKA on Words with Friends a couple of days later, so meeting it again so soon raised a smile.

    Enjoyed the Spoonerless spoonerism.

    FOI OWL (owls fascinate me !)
    TIME 8:18 (I was really pleased to be sub-10 minutes)

  9. Good one. Ripped through it in 40 mins, ho ho, and many a coffee. Really enjoyable.
  10. Thanks setter and brnchn
    Nice puzzle that I didn’t find as easy as some of the rest here – taking a tad over 50 min in a number of sessions.
    Have come across both currencies before, although STOTINKA doesn’t always stick and find that I have to piece it together every time from the word play. Couldn’t parse POETASTER even after seeing POE and thinking of the Edgar Allan – just didn’t know this work and didn’t think to look it up. Took a while to see what was happening with LIAISON, but was finally able to divide it into LIA and IS ON.
    A number of excellent clues, in particular THORAX, ATOP and NEURON. Finished in the NW corner with EXPONENT and LUPINE the last couple in.

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