Times Quick Cryptic 1271 by Hurley

This seemed a bit on the tricky side to me but I have no time to report due to travel interruptions. Let me know how it was to go at in one sitting as I suspect there were a lot of easy-ins but a few chewy ones – especially in the downs.


1. STAMPEDE – sudden rush. Impressed (STAMPED), English (E).
5. LENT – double definition. Provided for a while (on loan) – lent, 40 days in Spring.
8. AFTER A FASHION – to some extent. Anagram (after redevelopment) of FAN OF THIS AREA.
10. TIMOR – Island. Mike (M) participates in an anagram (unfortunately) of RIOT.
11. CURATOR – museum employee. Anagram (arranged) of CAR TOUR.
12. RETAIN – keep. Referring to (RE), Territorial Army (TA), at home (IN).
13. MEDIUM – average. Doctor finishing early (MEDI)c, I (I), hesitate to say (UM).
16. MARQUEE – tent. Damage (MAR), monarch curtailed (QUEE)n.
18. SHANK – cut of meat. Went down (SANK) pinching hotel (H).
20. ACCREDITATION – approval. Anagram (prepared) of TRIO NICE ACT AD.
21. TREK – long journey. Backwards inside dar(KER T)imes.
22. GREENERY – foliage. More inexperienced (GREENER), Yankee (Y).


1. START – jump/be surprised. Leading man (or woman) (STAR) ahead of time (T).
2. ATTEMPT – try. Some noug(AT TEMPT)ing.
3. PORTRAITURE – painting style. Coastal town (PORT), artist (RA), Italian (IT), sure initially ignored s(URE).
4. DEFECT – double definition.
6. EDICT – order. Redraft (EDIT) including (C)aptain’s.
7. TANTRUM – hissy fit. Effect of sun (TAN), brough(T), strange (RUM).
9. STREETSCAPE – picture from town. (S)mar(T), steer upwards (REETS) on top of headland (CAPE).
12. REMNANT – something left over. Regular payment (RENT) around (covering) Monday oddly (MoNdAy).
14. IMAGINE – Dream. Island (I), belonging to (in my possession/inside) me (ME) with silver (AG) and in (IN). I think the (?) is ‘forgiving’ the ‘it’ at the end for the word play to work. Island (I), belonging to me (MINE) with silver (AG) inside it.
15. DENIER – double definition – one refusing to accept it and fineness of silk. The latter definition is not very common in my vocabulary but was dredged up from somewhere.
17. RECCE – &lit – the whole clue is the definition as a recce is an initial look-see. The first letters of (R)ather (E)xact) (C)areful (C)lever (E)xamination first of all?
19. KINKY – with unconventional tastes. Kentucky (KY) supporting (holding up) family (KIN).

41 comments on “Times Quick Cryptic 1271 by Hurley”

  1. Fairly straightforward, but three of the long ones required a lot of checkers, the two acrosses because I don’t write anagrist down for Quickies, and PORTRAITURE because it hadn’t occurred to me that that was a style of painting; a type or a genre, but not a style. 6:58.
  2. 7 minutes, but like others I needed most of the checkers before coming up with ACCREDITATION. Also TIMOR would be way down the list of islands I could name off the top of my head so I needed a checker to get me started on sorting out its anagrist.
  3. Just under 15 minutes, no real hold ups, last few were denier, greenery and start.

    Cod stampede.

    Edited at 2019-01-22 05:09 pm (UTC)

  4. Not too many write ins so pleasantly surprised to be all done in 16.27, albeit with a red square in my LOI because I put in PORTRAITUEE. But since that was down to carelessness rather than ignorance I’m giving me all green. I particularly liked 12a and admired how much was crammed into 14a. Good work Hurley! Thanks too to Chris.
  5. Held up mostly by taking a while to see the long words, but nothing too tricky here. I doesn’t suppose it matters much, but I parsed 14d slightly differently as I (island) MINE (belonging to me) with AG (silver) inserted (“in it”). STAMPEDE my LOI. COD to the neat reverse hidden TREK. 6:06
  6. 18:05 for me today with Stampede and Portraiture the last two in. FOI was Curator so it took me a while to get going. After that I had frequent pauses to work out what was happening. Accreditation needed all the checkers.
    It was clear to me what was needed for each clue,it just took a while to unravel them. David
  7. Urggggh I couldn’t get STREETSMART out of my head for 9d, despite the presence of the word SMART in the clue meaning there was about 0.000001% chance it would be part of the answer 🙁

    But I shall learn…

  8. 15 mins this morning (vs 20 min avge) and whilst doing it I felt it was on the easier side for a QC.

    Anagrams filled lots of squares, not sure if it was an above average number of anagram clues but there were a couple of long ones in there.

    Enjoyed the puzzle so thanks to Hurley and to Chris for the blog.

  9. Mostly straightforward. I had no problems with ACCREDITATION, PORTRAITURE, STAMPEDE, IMAGINE etc. but, like ronpenalties, I got hung up on STREETSCAPE (my LOI) – I had the idea of ‘smart’ stuck in my head so I spent time on streetaware, streetsmart (!) thinking I had made an error with one of the SE checker clues. Under 15 mins until I started faffing about with that. Still under 3 Kevins but I kicked myself. Thanks to Hurley for some nice clues (including DEFECT, TANTRUM, MARQUEE and the four above. Ta to Chris, too. John M.

    Edited at 2019-01-22 09:50 am (UTC)

  10. 15.12 with enough bite to give pause for thought. Enjoyed the double definitions today. PORTRAITURE and STREETSCAPE not terms that immediately came to mind. ACCREDITATION needed checkers without pen and p. to hand.
  11. Lots of people say that they don’t write out the anagrist “for a QC” (Kevin says it today but it pops up quite often). I don’t understand this – a 13 letter anagram is a 13 letter anagram, whether it’s in the 15×15 or the QC. In the QC it’s easier to SPOT that it’s an anagram, but having spotted it, solving it is no different from/easier than solving the same anagram in the 15×15. So why would one use a different method? (My method is to do it in my head, which usually works, and write it out if I can’t do it in my head. Today I had to write out the anagrist for ACCREDITATION.)

    Anyway. Very enjoyable puzzle, though I was a bit taken aback by “after” being in both clue and answer in 8ac, and quick for me at 1.4 Kevins so a Very Good Day. I only know DENIER from Raymond Chandler novels – you could always tell when he was setting up a girl to be the love interest because Marlowe would notice the denier count of her stockings at first meeting! Different days. FOI STAMPEDE, LOI TIMOR, COD STREETSCAPE.

    Thanks Hurley and Chris.


    1. I think the reluctance to use pen and paper for the QC anagrams is more to do with the time taken to use these tools than anything else – certainly in my own case. I am aiming for times in the 10 – 15 minutes range for QCs, and 40m ish for the 15 x 15. Taking time to scramble the anagrist on paper is the same in each case, but proportionately much more expensive in the QC. As a result, .like you, I try to solve in my head in the QC, but I’m prepared to pay the cost in the 15 x 15. Another factor is that for years I did the QC on the rattler, where using pen and paper is more of a faff.
    2. Years ago I asked the 15×15 blog how come they got such amazing times and one reply was that they didn’t write out the anagrist (the other was that they’d be doing these for so many years they tend to recognise the clues). So I had a go at not using the letter circle and it got stuck as a habit/challenge. Comes in useful at pub quizzes sometimes, but maybe I should switch on blog days to try for a better grasp of the difficulty of the puzzle.
      1. Interesting to read other solvers’ ideas on this. I am another travelling solver, so try to untangle them in my head unless I’m really stuck (lazy weekend solves invariably involve lots of letter circles, though – worth the investment in time IMO).

        There’s a good video on the Cracking the Cryptic YouTube channel about anagrams specifically; Mark gives the usual advice to look for common letter combinations (esp. at the start and end of words), but I also learnt to count the number of vowels to give an indication of the number of syllables required and found this has helped at times.

        Thanks for the blog Chris.

      2. I was told that the real experts could complete in their head, without writing in any answers.

        Not sure I’d believe that of anyone I knew, but I move in low places . .


    3. I didn’t realize so many people were not writing the anagrist down. In any case, I do the QC’s mainly as practice, and working out anagrams in my head is a form of practice; it’s also a kind of self-imposed handicap. I certainly would never think of recommending it to anyone, and I virtually always write down the letters in a 15×15.

      Edited at 2019-01-22 11:21 am (UTC)

      1. As an iPad solver, normally on the train, I tend to not write anagrist out at all (including for the 15 x 15].
        This has mixed results however, so don’t think I’m endorsing it as an approach.

        I do think it helps me to be a bit sharper when solving anagrams generally (even on good old fashioned treeware, and at the champs – not that you’d notice from my results)

        1. I seldom write down the letters of the anagrind, but I’ve got the tortured kind of mind that plays around with letter rearrangement anyway ! Anybody with a long memory might recall how quickly I cracked most of the Conundrums when I had my run on “Countdown” 26 years ago (where did the time go ?), but I also seldom wrote down my workings in any of the rounds. It’s just the way I roll.

          With ACCREDITATION, I actually wrote in “ation” when I’d solved the crossing down clues, and the rest wasn’t too tricky after that.

          1. Good speed tip there – if crossers make a pattern obvious put the bit you can get it, more often than not the rest will become clear
            1. If I can see part of the solution, either from checkers or from etymology (in 15×15 or barred) I write down the anagrist and then delete what is known, but this is too slow for a QC.
  12. A good fun puzzle with which to begin the day. It took me about half an hour or so, which is a bit longer than usual but I think that was because of the time spent trying to sort out the long anagrams. I thought 14 down was clever and I also liked 15 down – a smart double definition. Thanks so much, Chris, for the blog and thanks, too, to Hurley for an enjoyable puzzle.
  13. The universe is a happy place again as I was inside my target range by a (small) number of seconds, at 9m and 47s. No problems with anything except my LOI was accreditation, needing all the checkers to help sort out the obvious anagrist. Thanks Hurley and Chris.
  14. Took a little while to get going, but luckily spotted the long anagrams early which helped.

    LOI STREETSCAPE, just couldn’t spot it straight away.


  15. I havent seen anyone mention it yet, but there appears to be an error in the clueing? I is double counted from medic and from the clue? Unless there is another way of parsing it which clears this up?
    1. The clue doesn’t specify exactly how early the doc is finishing. It will usually be just one letter early but I don’t think it’s a hard and fast rule, more a loose convention. For what it’s worth, ‘medic’ itself is an abbreviated form for ‘medical’ or ‘medical officer’ and possibly others.
      Really enjoyed today’s offering with all four longer clues requiring respect.
      Customary but genuine thanks to setter and blogger.

      Edited at 2019-01-22 12:02 pm (UTC)

      1. I would think it’s (closer to) a hard and fast rule; I can’t think of a case where a clue like this (‘finishing early’) would require deletion of 2 or more letters. Here, I don’t see any problem at all: ‘medic’ is a noun meaning ‘doctor’, and the parsing is as Chris indicates.
        1. I’m pretty sure there was one in a 15×15 some months (or even longer) ago that required deletion of three letters. I believe Jackkt was blogging and commented on how unusual it was at the time so he may recall what clue/when it was. Rupert
  16. A record 21 minutes for me so on the easy side. How quick do you need to be to crack 600 points in the crossword club?
  17. ….and consequently just missed my 5 minute target.

    I’ve already mentioned my take on ACCREDITATION earlier in the blog, but I also behaved atypically with PORTRAITURE – “port” didn’t jump out at me, and I actually solved the four separate elements working upwards.

    I agree with Templar that the “after” in 8A might have been better as “following”.

    TIME 5:07

  18. I clocked in at 9:51 for this one, with 30 seconds scanning for typos. TIMOR was my FOI and START, preceded by STAMPEDE, was my LOI. I do what Phil does with some words where the pattern shows a probable letter combination and often stick a letter which is obvious from the wordplay at the start or end of a word. ACCREDITATION just sprang into my mind from the anagrist and the A_C I already had. I usually have a try at doing anagrams in my head, but if nothing appears quickly, I use pen and paper, both for the QC and the 15×15. With 3d ITURE went in first from the wordplay and the rest was worked out later. Nice puzzle. Thanks Hurley and Chris.

    Edited at 2019-01-22 12:42 pm (UTC)

  19. I thought this was a fairly gentle offering from Hurley, and managed to finish in 23mins – quite fast by my standards. I might have been a little quicker, but needed all the crossers for Accreditation, and initially thought 4d would include a L/R reversal. Then again, 8ac came to mind quite quickly, so I can’t complain – I find that just writing the anagrist backwards gives me more than enough randomisation. My CoD was 9d, Streetscape. Invariant

    Edited at 2019-01-22 01:40 pm (UTC)

  20. I thought this was a medium level of difficulty and my LOI was 13a MEDIUM. I’m not sure why it delayed me. The result was an average solving time of 13 mins!
  21. Well I was bang average today – at the time of solving my time of 10.57 was the average on the club site leader board. I consider the (rare) days that I beat the average to be good ones, so I’m a fairly pleased with that.
    Nothing too tricky but the long clues at 8a, 3d (LOI) and 9d required some constructing. Particularly enjoyed the imagery of 7d, especially after trudging home through the snow.
    Thanks for the blog

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