Times Cryptic No 28266 – Saturday, 16 April 2022. Known unknowns?

This was a straightforward solve, with a few obscurities that we’ve seen before. The top right held my last few in, shortly after I cracked 8D. Thanks to the setter for a very enjoyable puzzle. How did you all get on?

Notes for newcomers: The Times offers prizes for Saturday Cryptic Crosswords. This blog is posted a week later, after the competition closes. So, please don’t comment here on the current Saturday Cryptic.

[Read more …]Clues are blue, with definitions underlined. Any hidden answers are in red.

1 As London club, wanting a liberal in charge (7)
ARSENIC – ARSEN(al) + I/C. As is the chemical symbol for arsenic.
5 Underground drain hasn’t rain around entry (5)
DEBUT – TUBE + D(rain), all backwards (‘around’).
9 Man in Macbeth, say, moving east (5)
ETHAN – THANE, with the E moved forward. Macbeth was Thane of Glamis and also, later, of Cawdor.
10 Perhaps arm cracking whip in some French dairy (9)
CAMEMBERT – MEMBER=arm, ‘cracking’ CAT=whip.
11 A prison bordering on a quantity of land (7)
ACREAGE – A + CAGE, ‘bordering’ RE=on + A.
12 Web article in French about Greek (7)
LATTICE – LE (article in French) around ATTIC.
13 Retire from hospital? Dismissal following appeal (3,3,4)
HIT THE SACK – H=hospital + IT=sex appeal + THE SACK=dismissal.
15 Expert leaves saying part of speech (4)
VERB – (pro)VERB.
18 Something that is so out of time in religious book (4)
20 Reasonable skirts silver and trendy (3,3,4)
ALL THE RAGE – ALL THERE = reasonable, in the sense of rational. Insert AG=silver.
23 Extraction tool appropriate to mushrooms (7)
FORCEPS – FOR=appropriate to + CEPS=mushrooms.
24 Rotten king: terrible ruler going over outline of speech (7)
KNAVISH – K=king + IVAN (the Terrible) ‘going over’ + S(peec)H.
25 Praising person famous for driving on the right (9)
LAUDATORY – (Niki) LAUDA=famous driver + TORY=on the right.
26 Folk knowledge about India is current in Europe (5)
LOIRE – LORE ‘about’ I=India.
27 Taps into valuable material to make pigment (5)
OCHRE – C + H=cold and hot taps, in ORE=valuable mineral.
28 Surveillance operation ditching Sierra or Escort (4,3)

1 Dry shirt messed up attending houses (7)
ATHIRST – AT=attending. It ‘houses’ an anagram (messed up): SHIRT. An old-fashioned word, but we’ve seen it before.
2 Get brown paper bag without good article (8)
SUNBATHE – SUN=paper + BA(g) + THE.
3 Comfortable spot according to Otto I in north-east (5)
NICHE – if Otto speaks German, ICH=I. Put that in NE.
4 Firm understood to dismiss leader involved in crime (9)
5 Strip of rank ham after days (6)
DEMOTE – EMOTE (as a ham actor might) after D.
6 Where workers may be seen in High Barnet (7)
BEEHIVE – “Barnet” is CRS for hair, so High Barnet, as well as being a Tube Station, is a cryptic hint for the answer as an old fashioned hairstyle.
7 Student of French you support on course (5)
TUTEE – TU=‘you’ in French + TEE=support on (golf) course.
8 Figure Homer represented eating butter up (8)
METAPHOR – anagram (represented): HOMER, ‘eating’ PAT (of butter) ‘up’, meaning backwards. I was thinking butter=ram, and as I tried to mumble the sort of word that might produce, the angel of the household heard METAPHOR. A triumph for poor diction?
14 Climbing mountains, call to spare no expense (6,3)
SPLASH OUT – ALPS ‘climbing’ + SHOUT.
16 British troops accordingly keeping queen’s men in order (8)
BRETHREN – B=British + RE=troops +THEN=accordingly, ‘keeping’ R=queen.
17 Group of mates round after lager is drunk (8)
SERAGLIO – anagram (drunk): LAGER IS, then O=round. Deceptive definition.
19 By losing energy, where poor driver may end up (7)
THROUGH – a poor golfer’s tee shot might end up in TH(e) ROUGH.
21 Believer in a philosophical idea and its main ground (7)
ANIMIST – anagram (ground): ITS MAIN.
22 Waste the money one’s paid in the Home Counties? (6)
23 Lifted picture from big book (5)
FOLIO – OIL=picture + OF=from, all ‘lifted’.
24 Boat unaffected after capsizing? (5)
KAYAK – a palindrome (unaffected after capsizing), and a literal definition too. A kayak is designed to roll over safely.

16 comments on “Times Cryptic No 28266 – Saturday, 16 April 2022. Known unknowns?”

  1. …because I couldn’t make sense of the clue so biffed ‘rite’.
    I found the puzzle enjoyable, though. I have double-plus ticks against HIT THE SACK, LATTICE and THROUGH, with COD to THROUGH.
    When we lived in France, we used to take visitors to the lovely port town of Honfleur and on the way back divert via the village of CAMEMBERT, so our friends could have their picture taken with the village sign.
    That’s one of 4 clues with a French or German connection: 10ac, 12ac, 3d, 7d.
    Thank you for BRETHREN and FOLIO, Bruce, but I query ALL THERE = ‘reasonable’. In my view ALL THERE is synonymous with being in full possession of one’s faculties.
    Oh, and I’m another one who fixated on ‘butter’ = ‘ram’, but the only ‘angel’ in my household is my Miniature Poodle and avatar, Bianca, so she was no help in sorting that one out!
    Thanks for the blog, Bruce!
    1. I see what you mean, but the first two definitions in Collins—“showing reason or sound judgment” and (especially) “having the ability to reason”—seem to match the answer well enough.

      Edited at 2022-04-23 04:07 pm (UTC)

  2. Never figured out NICHE; or OCHRE, which I still don’t get. DNK LAUDA. LOI, embarrassingly enough, was ARSENIC; I had thought I was past being fooled by As and He. COD to SERAGLIO.

    Edited at 2022-04-23 06:33 am (UTC)

    1. The idea of SERAGLIO being a ‘group of mates’, for me conjures up an image of a wild, untamed group of ‘ladettes’ engaged in a boozy party in a harem!
  3. 44 minutes with ATHIRST LOI. I spent an age constructing BRETHREN having biffed it. I did see the right-wing racing driver, my COD, quickly. I found this tough but a good challenge. And BEEHIVE left me with all of Dusty’s catalogue as an ear worm. Thank you B and setter.
  4. Struggled to get a foothold but it flowed quite well once I did

    Quite a few very nice clues SERAGLIO THROUGH LAUDATORY and my favourite OCHRE

    METAPHOR loi after also trying to shoehorn MAR in

    As for ARSENIC I saw As, thought “that could be arsenic but it won’t be” and moved on. D’oh as the occupant of 8d might have said

    Thanks Bruce and Setter

    Edited at 2022-04-23 07:55 am (UTC)

  5. DNF after 91 minutes as I left 9ac even though I had guessed ETHAN. I just had no idea why that would be the answer.

    I Needed the blog to understand the parsing of CAMEMBERT, LATTICE (I guessed ATTIC for Greek without knowing why) and OCHRE where I should have seen ‘hot and cold’.

    Parsed BRETHREN and THROUGH post solve and ANIMIST was just a matter of getting the letters in the right order and checking with Google.

  6. NICHE was my FOI, then I populated the NE. I had quite a few interruptions, but nevertheless completed in 31:41. Loved SERAGLIO, LAUDATORY and TH(e)ROUGH. My LOI was METAPHOR where I also tried to use RAM as the butter. 31:41. Thanks setter and Bruce.
  7. I invented a word for 8d – REFATHOM (figure out again). My “butter” was FAT.
    1. Nice one- almost works! (I usually end up having to refathom more than once the majority of my attempts in these puzzles).
  8. Failed to solve SUNBATHE, BEEHIVE or BRETHREN — obviously need work on clues containing the letter B. Many others entered from definition and crossers but not fully understood.Thanks, brnchn ,for showing me how everything worked.
  9. Nearly an hour, but at least correctly solved. BEEHIVE was biffed, since although I knew BARNET was CRS for something, I couldn’t remember for what. The rest I actually understood. SERAGLIO was my LOI after realising that “IS” was part of the anagrist. The mates in the group are of course not each other’s mates, but the sultan’s. METAPHOR was near the end, since I was also thinking the butter would be a ram. Nice puzzle.

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