Times Quick Cryptic No 2229 by Izetti

Today I have another Izetti to blog. A little on the hard side again, I think; I have no proper time recorded, but it was over 6 minutes. Some nice clues – I liked 22A and 6D in particular, but there is one word I think is a bit obscure and a couple of other tricky bits in the SE corner. Thank-you Izetti. How did you all get on?

P.S. I’ve just realised that, whilst I consider myself still a relative newbie among the bloggers, the 5th anniversary of my first TfTT blog was last week and this is my 200th post on the site. Doesn’t time fly?

Fortnightly Weekend Quick Cryptic.  This time it is Phil’s turn to provide the extra weekend entertainment. You can find his crossword here. Enjoy! If anyone is interested in our previous offerings you can find an index to all 60 here. Apologies to those who were thwarted by the bad link in the blog excerpt to the last one. You can access it via this link: Weekend QC 59.

Definitions underlined in bold italics, (Abc)* indicating anagram of Abc, {deletions} and [] other indicators.

1 Copper looking flushed made well again (5)
CUREDCU (chemical symbol for copper) RED (looking flushed).
4 Originator and sponsor with nothing to hide (7)
FOUNDERFUNDER (sponsor) outside [with … to hide] O (0, nothing).
8 Not open to accommodate top new athletics event (4,3)
SHOT PUTSHUT (not open) outside [to accommodate] (top)* [new].
9 Dangerous female responsible for some men’s ire naturally (5)
SIREN -Hidden in [some]  men’S IRE Naturally.
10 Playwrights admit stars can be tricky (10)
DRAMATISTS – (admit stars)* [can be tricky].
14 Worked in small room, changing the far end (6)
TOILEDTOILE{t} (small room) changing the last letter [far end] to a D.
15 Went on water in vessel with huge dictionary! (6)
CANOEDCAN (vessel) OED (Oxford English Dictionary; huge dictionary). A bit of an odd surface, I think.
17 Roadside markers transforming solemn site (10)
MILESTONES – [transforming] (solemn site)*.
20 Holiday settlements maybe with a hundred electrical units (5)
CAMPSC (a hundred in Roman numerals), AMPS (electrical units).
22 To s-see a drunkard (7)
TOSSPOTTO S-SPOT (see). Nice one.
23 Newcomer to area, one to sort out dispute? (7)
SETTLER -Double definition, the second a cryptic hint.
24 Reveal secret in short communication left lying around? (3,2)
LET ONNOTE  (short communication) L (left) all reversed [lying around] -> LET ON.
1 Amount spent to put firm on street (4)
COSTCO (company; firm) ST (street).
2 Nonsense about circle in underground development (4)
ROOTROT (nonsense) [about] O (circular letter).
3 People sent packing, being tied up, put on river (9)
DEPORTEES – ROPED (tied) [up] -> DEPOR, TEES (river).
4 Female with a tiny boy and a famous daughter (6)
FATIMAF (female) A TIM (Tiny Tim from A Christmas Carol; tiny boy) A. As described here, Fatima was the daughter of Muhammed. I didn’t know that.
5 President primarily in America for the good times (3)
UPSP{resident} [primarily] [in] US (america).
6 Scorn, inside or out (8)
DERISION – (inside or)* [out]. Neat.
7 Call team close to where couple fight (8)
RINGSIDERING (call) SIDE (team).
11 Journey across RSA — making this? (9)
TRAVERSALTRAVEL (journey) [across] RSA.
12 Puts up with most cash being squandered (8)
STOMACHS – (most cash)* [squandered].
13 After slight depression, see dull person trying to be tactful (8)
DIPLOMATDIP (slight depression) LO (see) MAT (dull). Sneaky. You need to split “dull person”.
16 Scottish peasant in bed with sailor (6)
COTTARCOT (bed) TAR (jolly Jack sailor). A new word for me. The dictionary says “historical”. I think it may have escaped from a Mephisto, but the wordplay is clear.
18 Head to show contempt physically? (4)
SPIT -Double definition… and quite a tricky one, I think. The first as in a spit of land.
19 Shock as bits of food served up (4)
STUN -NUTS (bits of food) reversed [served up] -> STUN. “Bits of food” is not the most helpful of definitions.
21 Note in scale, only not E (3)
SOLSOL{e} (only) without the E.

60 comments on “Times Quick Cryptic No 2229 by Izetti”

  1. 19:36. Had the most difficulty with CANOED.Tiny boy=Tim , UPS= good times, toilet= small room and ROOT=underground development were all tricky but clever definitions. I knew Robert Burns’ The Cotter’s Saturday Night but didn’t know it spelled with an a. TRAVERSAL had me trying out variants of Trek, Vortrekker,Transvaal etc. what with the RSA reference in the clue ,but the actual answer was simpler. Congratulations on milestone-your blogs are much appreciated!

  2. I found this much easier than some of the others this week. I didn’t finish because FATIMA was beyond me, which made FOUNDER somehow really difficult

    I got COTTAR from the wordplay however.
    I also couldn’t parse DEPORTEES. I didn’t know the river Tees, thought we were using the river Dee somehow

    Thanks everyone!

  3. 5 + 1/2 minutes

    Don’t know about TOSSPOT – I don’t have a dictionary to hand, but google lists the drunkard meaning as archaic and I’ve never heard anyone use the word to mean anything other than a stupid, contemptible person

    1. “But when I came into my beds, With hey,ho, the wind and the rain, With tosspots still had drunken heads, For the rain it raineth every day”.- from song at the end of Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night

    2. I only knew the drunkard meaning, but then Collins marks the contemptible person meaning as British. But Collins also calls the drunkard meaning ‘archaic’, and I’d certainly agree with that, although ODE doesn’t mark it so. (ODE sv tosspot: (informal) a habitual drinker (also used as a general term of abuse). All their corpus examples are of the abuse sort.) In any case, not the best clue for a Quickie. Same, of course, goes for COTTAR.

    1. Indeed. I meant to add a comment in the blog by forgot… thanks for reminding me. I will now.

  4. Sluggish again, I don’t know why. If I recall, DIPLOMAT & TRAVERSAL took some time; and never having come across COTTAR, I spent some time on it making sure there wasn’t something else going on. 8:27.

  5. 6d, DERISION, gets clue of the week from me – a cracker. Thought I’d done well here solving FATIMA (knew it was right once I’d assembled it) and COTTAR (definitly NHO). Started entering ‘limestones’ before I saw sense but then did enter TOILEt – I think that’s not pausing to parse properly rather than a typo. So not all green in 14. Enjoyable hard work after a goodish seven on first pass.

  6. 17 minutes, so into the red for the second time this week, which is bad for me. I sailed through the top third, maybe half, but lost time getting a foothold towards the bottom. In retrospect I’m not sure why as the words are all familiar enough apart from COTTAR, but that had clear wordplay and I am familiar with ‘cot’ as a small cottage or humble dwelling which might easily be associated with a Scottish peasant. Cotter with an E is a type of pin used in engineering.

  7. I found this tricky too. COTTAR and FATIMA had to be deduced from wordplay. TRAVERSED took a while to see. CURED was FOI. TOILED was LOI. 10:15. Thanks Izetti and John, and congrats on the milestone!

  8. Started at a gallop – the NW corner almost a write-in – but then slowed considerably, with the SE corner holding out longest and pushing me to a 15 minute solve. Tosspot biffed (I did know the meaning, archaic or not) but never parsed; now I see the parsing it is both very nice and much too clever for me! That led to my LOI Spit, one of the less obvious DDs I think.

    Cluing Fatima as a “famous” daughter a bit of a challenge for me at least when I NHO her. I’m sure in some circles she is a household name but I had to construct the answer from the wordplay and having done so, said to myself “well, that is a woman’s name so it must be right, but famous?”

    Many thanks John for the blog and congratulations on the milestone – nearly 10% of all the QCs so quite a contribution! And the Saturday Specials as well – I look forward to the latest in the series.

    A good weekend to all

    1. Thanks, but I’ve only done 10% of the QCs in the last 5 years (134 blogs), although I’ve also done 20% of the Jumbo Cryptics (59 blogs) and a few site announcements to bring the total to 200.

  9. A quick start with 1a and its offshoots going straight in, but the SE proved much trickier with the COTTAR/TOSSPOT combo being particularly tough as I’d heard of neither. The latter gets my COD just for the image of people tossing pots of ale down their necks in a medieval tavern.
    Nearly ended up with a pink square for biffing depaArtees, but fortunately I remembered to go back and parse it and saw my error.
    Completed in 9.13 with LOI SPIT.
    Thanks to John

  10. Like Jackkt, I sailed through most of the top third/half and slowed markedly, scrabbling for fingerholds, in the bottom half. I took a minute longer than he did.
    Some clever clues and a few d’oh moments (TOILED, CANOED). I worked out FATIMA and COTTAR but entered them with fingers crossed. SPIT and SOL were not obvious but were fair.
    My COD was TOSSPOT. Thanks to both. John M.

  11. Worst week in years for me. Must need a brain reset – I’ve lost the ability to do anagrams. STOMACHS took ages, as did DRAMATISTS.

    Having said that, DERISION was a good one and a v neat clue.

    LOI was TOILED after an alphabet trawl.


  12. 30 minutes. From FOI: COST then the top two across and all their hangers for a fast start. Then it took careful attention to WP to work my way through the rest, particularly FATIMA and COTTAR. I didn’t know the peasant or the famous daughter. Finally finishing with what I thought was my last SOL then noticed gaps at 15ac so LOI: CANOED.
    Most enjoyable.

  13. Enjoyed this as I actually managed to finish in one go, after a bad week of desperately dipping in and out.
    FOI CURED and NW went well. Then jumped around solving a few more. STOMACHS helped. Managed FATIMA after DRAMATISTS.
    Yes, took a while to sort out SE after finally SETTLing on TRAVERSAL.
    Had to biff NHO COTTAR. COD CANOED.
    Thanks vm, John. Yes, congrats on double century!

  14. A lot to enjoy so thanks setter and blogger. I think tosspot has moved on from meaning a drunkard and I would suggest out of polite use. I don’t get huge in 15a and I think that both sol and especially cottar are obscure, though I agree they are clear enough from the clues

      1. Mine is a single volume but I acknowledge the whole thing is vast. Still not sure it contributes to the clue but heh 🙂

        1. I thought the clue a little odd. I’m not convinced the exclamation mark validates the strange surface, but maybe I just can’t see what our setter was getting at.

        2. I think you’ll find your single volume is the Oxford Dictionary of English but they’ve caused a lot of confusion over the years by having similar names and that’s without even starting on the pocket editions. The next size down from the 20 volume OED is the Shorter Oxford English Dictionary which consists of two very large volumes.

            1. The word ‘huge’ helped the likes of me, a SSC+ member of this group. I immediately thought ‘OED’ and the clue fell into placed.
              In my youth there was a copy of the Shorter Oxford English Dictionary in my office – amused me because the two volumes were enormous.

              1. Thanks, Countrywoman. My copy of SOED was acquired as part of a deal when I took out a sub to a book club some years ago. It’s a superb edition with fancy binding and gold-leaf trim to every page but it has rarely been opened because it came with a CD ROM version ready for loading to computers, and that’s the only way I ever need to access it.

  15. I was very quick filling in the NW corner but the SE corner was a different matter entirely. I guessed COTTAR, CANOED needed all the checkers and I didn’t really connect that bits of food = nuts. I got TOS well before SPOT and my LOI was SPIT, outside target, in 12:07.

    Congratulations John on your 200th post. I’m just wondering, have you got quicker at posting over the years?

  16. Was going to be under 10 minutes but I did not equate TOSSPOT with drunkard; I needed to work that out from wordplay. LOI was SPIT. 11 minutes in the end.
    All clearly clued, trademark Izetti, so the unknowns -Fatima and Cottar -were clear enough.

  17. I found this one quite tough, but enjoyable on the whole. Though I didn’t care for 22a.

    Unfortunately it was a DNF for me as I had absolutely no idea for 21d

  18. 2hours plus including a load up of the car and a trip to the local dump – but needed the break to crack what I though was quite a tough puzzle.
    Biffed FATIMA.
    NHO COTTAR but cracked with crossers.
    Should have got DIPLOMAT and DERISION quicker and held up by looking for an anagram that ended in LINES instead of ultimately finding MILESTONES.

    Thanks Izetti and John

  19. The NW corner was very generous, but it was hard yards thereafter, albeit fairly clued. Like others, the SE corner was the sting in the tail, before a badly parsed Let On (let[ter] + on/leg/left) gave me a foothold. Around the 25min mark in total, with CoD to 13d, Diplomat – I just wish we had a few more like that (both senses). Invariant

      1. I’ve had years of practice in convincing myself that wrong answers are right, so it’s only a small step to get right answers for the wrong reason 😉

  20. 26 mins…

    Like a few people, I thought I was on for a quick Izetti, but once again he was teasing us and as soon as I hit the lower half I ground to a halt. Some lovely clues though – including 4ac “Founder”, 4dn “Fatima” and 11dn “Traversal”. I dnk 16dn “Cottar” but the wordplay was generous.

    FOI – 1ac “Cured”
    LOI – 18dn “Spit”
    COD – 22ac “Tosspot”

    Thanks as usual!

  21. Firstly, I was pleased to find a reference to my nom de plume in 4D although I didn’t know its origin!

    I too put in TRANSVAAL for 11D (although it didn’t really parse) but I realised the error of my ways when I put in MILESTONES at 17A.

    I smiled at 14A and I agree that the definition of ‘bits of food’ for NUTS was uncharacteristically loose for an Izetti.

    Otherwise very enjoyable as usual.

  22. A tough one from Izetti and I was relatively pleased to cross the line in 10.43. A last minute single letter change to 3dn was necessary as I had DEPARTEES originally, which meant the tied up part of the clue was RAPED ironically!
    Smiled at seeing TOSSPOT, as this is my favourite expletive when seeing someone do something dangerous when driving.

  23. A similar experience to many others. Started well in the NW and basically solved (slowly) in a diagonal direction, finishing in the SE. NHO cottar, so had to look that up to check it was correct. Total time was 26 mins (but there were a number of interruptions) with several left unparsed. My thanks to John for supplying the missing parsings. Thanks also to Izetti.

    FOI – 1ac CURED
    LOI – 18dn SPIT
    COD – 6dn DERISION

  24. That was horrible. 51 minutes (same time as yesterday), but a DNF. I guessed SaL instead of SOL – and it was a pure guess, as I had absolutely no idea what was going on in the clue.

    Other problem clues, included COTTAR (NHO), LET ON (did not parse), TOSSPOT (did not parse or like), SETTLER (very very slow to see, although good when I did), SPIT (took ages to come) and FATIMA (NHO).

    It’s four months since I last dipped under 40 minutes for an Izetti (5 slow times and 3 DNFs). He’s got a lot harder IMO.

    Mrs Random finished successfully, but in a relatively poor time for her of 34 minutes.

    Many thanks to Izetti and John.

  25. A very enjoyable 32 mins today but without parsing ‘sol’. How did I get through life thinking the fifth letter of the doh-fa scale was ‘so’ rather than ‘sol’! Even Mrs.Prof didn’t know that (which makes me feel much better).

    COD to the wonderfully clued DERISION.


    1. I knew SOL in my youth through the phrase ‘tonic sol-fa’.
      I looked it up online:
      ‘Tonic sol-fa (or tonic sol-fah) is a pedagogical technique for teaching sight-singing, invented by Sarah Ann Glover (1785–1867) of Norwich.’ It was popularised and widely used.

      I found it rather interesting when I read more widely. John.

      1. I now realise that my education has been overly influenced by The Sound of Music in which the song ‘Do – a deer’, etc which uses the line ‘So – a needle pulling thread’. Hence I have always thought the scale was do-re-me-fa-so-la-ti, rather than …fa-SOL-la-ti.
        Darn those Rogers and Hammerstein!

        1. I have always used do-re-me-fa-so-la-ti-do also. I don’t think the use of sol on this context negates that.
          It is just another wrinkle in the complex area of musical terminology which varies with geography and language.
          Perhaps Izetti is a musician as well as an ace setter? John

  26. Quite a few head-scratching moments here for me, and an unsatisfactory time of 16 minutes. Enjoyed all the clues when light eventually dawned, particularly Toiled and Tosspot. I was very glad of the blog to confirm some of my parsing – many thanks and look forward to lots more.

    1. Don’t worry, Ian. Izetti’s QCs are generally, as this one was, at the harder end of the spectrum. I hope the blog adequately explains those you couldn’t get .

  27. Keep going Ian ! I live rather near the Tees – one of more than a few rivers (in these islands and elsewhere) useful to setters. Thanks again!

  28. Like many others I was doing well until I came to the SE corner. NHO cottar and (to me) tosspot is a rude word (And not a drunkard). Bits of food was very vague for nuts. Also I knew the note as “soh”. Am I alone in that?

    1. So/Soh. The ‘h’ is usually silent. These are terms that are spoken and people use different ways of saying and writing them them in different languages and musical traditions but there is usually little doubt what is meant. Some of the posts above may be helpful, as is Google.
      The ‘sol’ in ‘tonic sol-fa’ has a long history and, as often with Izetti, its use here does needs a bit of lateral thought, though. John.

  29. Congratulations John and thank you for your excellent blogs and words of encouragement. Both are much appreciated.

    For two delicious minutes today, I was flying. After a decent first pass at the across clues, I went through the first 8 down clues like a knife through butter, getting a rare insight into what it must be like to solve a QC in under 10 mins.

    Unfortunately I then hit trouble and took my usual seat in the SCC. Whilst I was glad to finish, it was – like yesterday – a case of what might have been. I found ‘huge’ in 15ac to be confusing. Had it just said dictionary, I would have seen it sooner. Pleased to work out cottar and spit, and also tosspot (I knew the word as a term of abuse but not as a term for a drunkard). As usual, I got confused with ‘around’ in 24ac, looking for a word to go around L.

    All in all, pretty happy 😃 with today.

  30. The usual clever and precise crossword we expect from Izetti – om; let down IMO by SOL. Some very clever clues too.
    FOI 1a Cured
    LOI 21d Sol
    COD just has to be 6d Derision
    …and congratulations to you John for your patience and perseverance with the site – it is much appreciated.

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