Times Quick Cryptic 706 by Hawthorn

Posted on Categories Quick Cryptic
18 minutes because my final three answers (1ac, 2dn and 4dn) effectively doubled my time taken for the remainder of the puzzle. I’ve no idea why I had problems with the latter two clues, but the first one really threw me with its clever cryptic description of the device in question. I’m standing in at the last moment for Chris because he’s caught somewhere between Memphis and Kansas City with restricted access to the internet and Live Journal in particular. Here’s my hasty blog…

As usual definitions are underlined in bold italics, {deletions are in curly brackets} and [anagrinds, containment, reversal and other indicators in square ones]

1 Device for measuring space time (7,5)
PARKING METER – Cryptic definition. “Parking space”, geddit? My last one in. I had “meter” for ages but required every last checker for the first word before the “doh!” moment when the proverbial penny dropped. And speaking of pennies dropping, when meters were first introduced to the UK in 1958, the charge for an hour’s parking in Mayfair was 6d (2.5p).
8 Criminal husband shown in dodgy E-FIT (5)
THIEF – H (husband) in anagram [dodgy] of E-FIT
9 Revere bust bringing in millions for artist (7)
VERMEER – M (millions) in anagram [bust] of REVERE
10 South bank is narrow (7)
SLENDER – S (south), LENDER (bank)
11 Charges / a lot (5)
LOADS – Two definitions
12 Chess piece lieutenant put back in box (6)
CASTLE – LT (lieutenant) reversed [put back] in CASE (box). I never see “castle” for “rook” without thinking of the old Colonel who used to visit TftT many years ago and fulminate on the subject. I think he long ago succumbed to an apoplectic rage and went to meet his maker, so in his memory I have adjusted my user pic for today to a cartoon by H M Bateman entitled “A quiet half-hour with the Times”.
14 Crack a maths problem with inspiration? (6)
ASTHMA – Anagram [crack] of A MATHS
17 Picture that is on outside of magazine (5)
IMAGE – IE (that is) contains [on outside of] MAG (magazine)
19 Book of dates and times kept by signalman accurately (7)
ALMANAC – Hidden [kept] by {sign}ALMAN AC{curately}
21 I blush after accepting name is disregarded (7)
IGNORED – I, GO RED (blush) contains [accepting] N (name)
22 It is included in the donation (5)
TITHE – IT contained [included] in THE
23 Visual artist confusing Hopper with Hogarth almost (12)
PHOTOGRAPHER – Anagram [confusing] of HOPPER HOGART{h} [almost]
1 Guidance on washing machine use, perhaps for mum! (3,1,4,2,2)
PUT A SOCK IN IT – Not sure in my haste how to define this one but I think &lit probably covers it. The most important word here is “mum” with reference to the expression “keep mum” which means much the same as answer.
2 Short African mammal by eastern river (5)
RHINE – RHIN{o} (African mammal) [short], E (eastern]
3 Non-believer in force led one to change direction (7)
INFIDEL – IN, F (force), LED+I (one) reversed [change direction]
4 Attempt revolution, rising against new command (6)
GOVERN – GO (attempt), REV (revolution) reversed [rising], N (new)
5 Reformed loner to join society? (5)
ENROL – Anagram [reformed] of LONER
6 When speaking, I cut facial hair (7)
EYELASH – Sounds like [when speaking] I, LASH (cut). I don’t have time at the moment to check all the usual sources but “lash” for “cut” doesn’t seem quite right to me. On edit, a little later: I have now checked all the usual sources, and think I had a point as the Oxfords, Chambers and even my Collins thesaurus (notorious for listing loose synonyms) make no mention of “cut”. However the Collins Dictionary comes to the rescue with its very first definition “A sharp cutting blow…”
7 Tracy recalls misbehaving with absolute lucidity (7-5)
CRYSTAL-CLEAR – Anagram [misbehaving] of TRACY RECALLS
13 Fanatics surrounding area turned on church faithful (7)
STAUNCH – NUTS (fanatics) reversed containing [surrounding] A (area), CH (church)
15 Part of Indonesia shown in retrospective series from Jakarta museum (7)
SUMATRA – Hidden and reversed [shown in retrospective series] in {Jak}ARTA MUS{eum}
16 Perhaps Pluto and friend upset Chihuahua, say (6)
LAPDOG PAL (friend) reversed [upset], DOG (Pluto, perhaps) On edit: GOD (Pluto, perhaps) +  PAL (friend) reversed [upset]. Thanks to anon for spotting my slip re DOG.
18 Elegant white bird: for example, tailless tern ascending (5)
EGRET – EG (for example), TER{n} [tailless] reversed [ascending]. This is the fourth consecutive clue involving a reversal, making seven in total.
20 Nick’s incomplete comment on chapter (5)
NOTCH – NOT{e} (comment) [incomplete], CH (chapter)

24 comments on “Times Quick Cryptic 706 by Hawthorn”

      1. Being lashed with a cane by the Nuns in primary school was usually referred to as “getting the cuts”. Of course there was no actual cutting involved, unless you got Sister Francesca on a bad day.

        Admittedly a pretty loose association between lash and cut.

  1. This one was rough sledding for me, although I can no longer remember the specific problems, aside from RHINE, since ‘rhino’ is itself short for ‘rhinoceros’. 8:12.
  2. 35 minutes and quite enjoyable.

    Last ones were 1a, 11a, 14a and 5d.

    For 11a is the load referring to an electrical charge?

    16d was a little confusing and I had maddog at first, upset Chihuahua!

    1. I was thinking more of loading a firearm (which one then discharges) but the electrical charge might work too.
  3. This was a bit treacly as it took me to 50 seconds over then ten minutes.


    Initially I had 16dn as PLANET as ‘a Chihuahua’ is a ten buck drug deal in the lower reaches of California, Arizona and New Mexico – LAPDOG prevailed.

  4. I made such hard work of this, taking just over an hour in total. 12ac stumped me as I went through all the chess pieces, not realising castle is an accepted term. I was also looking for a specific artist in 23ac.13ac was, I thought, very hard. I was convinced I was looking for a word for church faithful, trying to get “nuts” (fanatic) to surround “a” and “no”. So happy I persevered, and happy to just finish. Gribb.
  5. Possibly for me one of the hardest QCs ever, with well over double the normal time. An excellent challenge – delayed by ASTHMA, trying to think of a word, other than ‘sum’, for maths problem. Did not appreciate 1d until afterwards. GOVERN caused difficulty too, reversing and reordering at speed not working. Is a TITHE a donation? It may just possibly be nowadays, but was certainly a tax or compulsory payment in the past. Many thanks jack (and for the cartoon) and Hawthorn.
    1. I wondered too, but decided this covers it: Later also, in certain religious denominations: a tenth of an individual’s income, pledged to the church.
  6. 16:38, so better than my average. Very much liked the double defs at 1a and 1d, always good to get those in early. LOI RHINE.
  7. One of the more difficult challenges I thought. 1ac (LOI) took me a long time to see even with all the checkers. Couldn’t get my mind away from space time = light years! The penny dropped eventually. Thought cut = lash was tenuous, and never think of castle as a chess piece despite the fact that “castling” rather than “rooking” is a recognised move.
    All in all, much enjoyed.
  8. 33 minutes to complete this excellent puzzle. Lots of clever clues e.g 17a and 22a and I thought I was on for a good time (about 20 minutes) until I got stuck on 1a, 2d, 4d,6d and 14a (my LOI).
    Even when I had guessed Meter as the second word in 1a, Parking did not spring to mind for too long; and the necessary 2d was not a gimme. Well done Hawthorn and thanks as ever to our blogger. David
  9. 13:43 for me, with not much in the way of hold ups. Clearly I was on the wavelength. Once I had enough letters to add PARKING to my METER the RHINE appeared before me and it was all over. COD 1a.
  10. I found this tough, especially the NE where I had lots of possible answers but lacked the conviction to put them in. Once I got 9a the rest slotted into place. I was going to ask for further clarification of the definition of 14a but the penny has just dropped.
    Solving time 23 minutes, LOI 20d and COD either of the 1s.
  11. Well, 30 minutes for everything apart from 1ac, 6d and 14ac. All three required a second sitting, but I don’t mind given the pleasure from finally seeing what was going on. I think 1ac is one of the best clues I’ve come across in ages, and 14ac wasn’t far behind. Well done Hawthorn, (who I think someone once mentioned was the crossword editor ?) Invariant
      1. Thanks – I’ll watch out for the next Felix.
        On a related topic, do you know how many of the QC setters also set for the 15×15 ? I sometimes think I can spot Izetti’s hand, but perhaps that’s because they all seem pretty fiendish anyway. Invariant
        1. I think you are right that Izetti sets some of the main Times puzzles but I don’t know it for sure. Other contributors may have more information. To be honest I much prefer when setters remain completely anonymous as I don’t like having preconceptions when I sit down to solve.
  12. I might be wrong, but I think the phrase “Perhaps Pluto” in 16d leads to God which is then inverted to give dog. In other words, both the “perhaps Pluto” and “friend” are inverted.

    I have never contributed here before although visit here often. I am immensely grateful to the setters, bloggers and contributers for teaching me so much.

    1. Thanks, anon, and on reflection I’m sure you are right that the reversal applies to both elements in the answer. As mentioned above I threw the blog together in a hurry to provide cover for the duty blogger so perhaps I didn’t give it my best attention.

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