Times Jumbo 698 (Sat 12 May) – Blunder gatherer

Posted on Categories Jumbo Cryptic
Solving time: 21:00, three mistakes (30ac, 34ac and 20dn).

This would have been under 15 mins but for 34ac, 41ac and 3dn. I got the last two of these right but guessed the first incorrectly, before checking and realising my error in 20dn. Throw in 30ac and this was a bit of a disaster for me.

* = anagram, “X” = sounds like ‘X’.

Across
17 H + AUTEUR – French for arrogance.
19 BUTTER(FL)Y
21 H(A RANG[e])UE
30 DEE PLAID – not ‘deep-lain’, clearly. Error #1.
34 HUNTER-GATHERER – a ‘hunter’ is a watch whose face is protected by a metal case. Error #2 (a result of 20dn).
38 ACHITOPHEL; (TO CALIPH HE)* – a biblical advisor of King David. Not a name I knew but this was the only plausible result of the anagram.
41 GNOME (double definition) – refers to the Gnomes of Z├╝rich, a term apparently coined by Howard Wilson. I just managed to prevent myself taking a wild guess for long enough to get this.
45 ARTEMIS + IA (rev. of A1) – absinthe is flavoured with wormwood.
48 K.O. (= ‘fell’) + PECKS (= ‘bills’, in the verbal sense) – knowing that KIP was a both a currency and a word meaning ‘hill’ (= ‘fell’), I wrote in KIP—- and struggled on this.
50 CLOC(HE for K)
Down
3 (E)MANATE[e] – ‘manatee‘ turns out to be another word for ‘sea-cow’. I looked long and hard for an alternative before deciding there wasn’t one.
4 NOTE (double definition) – I’m not sure why this clue is linked to the next.
7 ART(1ST for E)RY
8 SWA(I)N
20 TWOPENNY-HALFPENNY – not ‘twopence-halfpenny’ (error #3). I don’t really understand this clue (“Cheap at a tanner?”).
24 AG(RE)EING
37 SAL + ADC + REAM
51 CLEAR (three definitions)

6 comments on “Times Jumbo 698 (Sat 12 May) – Blunder gatherer”

  1. Twopence-halfpenny is the decimal equivalent of the old “tanner” (6d). I assume you know cheap = twopenny-halfpenny.

    I don’t quite get 49A PUNGENCY, assuming that’s the answer. I see “sharpness” and “joke” but where does “dope finds completely empty” fit in?

    Buzzword

    1. 49A PUN = joke, GEN = dope (information), CY = completely empty (outside letters of completely)
    2. Thanks. I’d wrongly assumed the answer referred to pre-decimal pence, not knowing that there was a decimal halfpenny coin.
      1. IIRC the old tanner remained in circulation for a while after decimalisation, valid as a 2 1/2p piece. There had been a press campaign against abolishing the tanner and this may have been a sop to that cause. Eventually, following hyper-inflation the 1/2p became worthless and was abolished. Whether the tanner remained valid currency until then I don’t remember.

        Thanks to Anonymous above for explaining PUNGENCY; I just couldn’t see it for some reason.

        Buzzword

  2. 14:50 for me. I’ve doubts about 38A, since in the bible (as opposed to Dryden) he’s spelt AHITHOPHEL (I’m not sure where the wikipedia’s AHITOPHEL comes from).

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