Times Quick Cryptic No 2267 by Izetti

Solving time: 13:13

Last Wednesday, it was doofenschmirtz’s turn to become the newest blogger on the block – this Wednesday, it’s mine!

None of the vocabulary should be too tricky here, though I had to think twice about some of the constructions. Most of the longer words seem to have been anagrams. How did you find it?

Definitions are underlined in bold italics, {deletions and substitutions are in curly brackets} and [directions in square ones].

1 Money prohibited, we hear, for musicians (5,4)
BRASS BAND – BRASS (money) + BAND which sounds like [we hear] BANNED (prohibited)
6 Youngster to jog but not run (3)
TOT – Jog is T{r}OT – remove the ‘r’ – cricket notation for runs
8 Petition concerning expedition? (7)
REQUEST – RE (concerning) + QUEST (expedition)
9 Story of competent female at the fore (5)
FABLE – ABLE (competent) with F{emale} stuck on the front [at the fore]
10 Team resigned, being involved in a row (12)
DISAGREEMENT – Anagram [being involved] of TEAM RESIGNED
12 Expert editor returning to newspaper (4)
DEFT – ED (editor) is reversed [returning] + FT (newspaper – the Financial Times in this case)
13 Greek characters contributing to the task (4)
ETAS – Hidden [contributing to] the task
17 Celebrity chef perhaps may have art treasure arranged round middle of house (12)
RESTAURATEUR – {ho}U{se} [middle of house] with anagram [arranged] of ART TREASURE surrounding [round]
20 Dish available in US city no more (5)
BALTI – US city is BALTIMORE – remove MORE

Needed a couple of checkers to set me on my way with this one!

21 Scot meets English fellow in ancient territory (7)
MACEDON – MAC (Scot) + E{nglish} + DON (fellow)

Macedon, also known as Macedonia, was an ancient kingdom on the periphery of Archaic and Classical Greece, and later the dominant state of Hellenistic Greece

23 Animal losing tail in river (3)
DEE – DEE{r} – random animal with last letter removed [losing tail]
24 Trick by French father — daughter rushed off (9)
SCAMPERED – SCAM (trick) + PÈRE (French for father) + D{aughter}
1 Assumed to be tedious person (4)
BORE – Double definition – BORE is the past tense of BEAR as in ‘Mike bore/assumed the responsibility for producing the Quick Cryptic blog every other Wednesday’
2 Get a group of singers to listen to (7)
ACQUIRE – Sounds like [to listen to] A CHOIR (a group of singers)
3 Observe heads of state expressing enthusiasm (3)
SEE – First letters [heads] of S{tate} E{xpressing} E{nthusiasm}
4 Flowering plants needed for Easter Sunday (6)
ASTERS – Hidden in Easter Sunday
5 Turning fifteen, vacant daughter is not the same (9)
DIFFERENT – Anagram [turning] of FIFTEEN + D{aughte}R [vacant = empty all letters except the first and last]
6 Item of furniture firm when the top is removed (5)
TABLE – {s}TABLE = firm with the first letter [top – pertinent here as it is a down clue] removed
7 Deal with unknown character, making agreement (6)
TREATY – TREAT (deal with) + Y [unknown character – choose from x, y or z – these characters often represent unknowns in algebraic mathematics]
11 A curate is naughty — we appreciate the risks (9)
ACTUARIES – Anagram indicator here is ‘naughty’ – the anagram fodder is A CURATE IS

ACTUARIES are business professionals who deal with the measurement and management of risk and uncertainty

14 Danseur dancing apart (7)
ASUNDER – Anagram [dancing] of DANSEUR

ASUNDER is possibly most often heard during the marriage service – those whom God hath joined together, let no man/one put asunder

15 In favour of bottom of river being delved into (6)
PROBED – PRO (In favour of) + BED (bottom of river)
16 Breach of law over area that is disputed region (6)
CRIMEA – CRIME (breach of law) + A [note use of the directional word ‘over’ – applied correctly here in this down clue]

The CRIMEA is a long-disputed peninsula on the northern coast of the Black Sea

18 What you must do, only having five to fill in (5)
SOLVE – SOLE (only) with the Roman five V inserted [to fill in]
19 Woman with aim to get around India (4)
ENID – END (aim) around I (India in the NATO phonetic alphabet)
22 Firm with quiet officer (3)
COP – CO (firm i.e. CO{mpany}) with P (quiet – from the Italian musical direction ‘piano’ or just ‘p’ = soft i.e. quiet)


84 comments on “Times Quick Cryptic No 2267 by Izetti”

  1. 11:11. Tried to add an “n” to RESTAURATEUR I guess because I pronounce it that way. For TABLE I was misled by thinking the furniture lost a letter to make a synonym of firm. I knew there was a word to fit the definition for 11D but ACTUARIES didn’t come to me till I had all the checkers. ASTERS looked like an anagram but when that couldn’t compute I finally saw the hidden staring at me. Still a very fast time for me considering these four snags.

  2. 6.40
    Lots of biffing, but all came good in the end. I knew, but have always been suspicious of, the lacking ‘n’ in RESTAURATEUR.

    May I be the first to congratulate you on your first (and excellent) blog! I hope you enjoy many entertaining years!

  3. Welcome and congrats on your first blog, Mike!

    9 minutes for this one. My only slight delay was putting RAU instead of URA in the middle of RESTAURATEUR- a foolish error as of course I know how to spell ‘restaurant’ – but CRIMEA soon forced me to have a rethink..

  4. Thanks for stepping up Mike, much appreciated.

    I briefly worked for Refuge Assurance so ACTUARIES was no problem and even helped spot a typo in RESTAURATEUR. Only three on the first pass of acrosses but the downs were kinder and so despite a hold up in the SE with CRIMEA and ENID needing careful thought after I’d changed a single letter to move from an unsatisfactory ‘scarpered’ to SCAMPERED. Ended up with ETAS where realising it was a hidden yielded a groan. All green in 16.

  5. Congratulations Mike on a luminous first blog. You got a much harder one than I did: well done indeed!

    I harrumphed over the missing N in RESTAURATEUR until I checked with my dictionary. If anyone can tell me why the N gets dropped, I’d be grateful.

    DNF with problems in the SE: the MACEDON/CRIMEA nexus beat me .

    Not keen at all on ETAS: more of a NYT/concise clue than I’d expect here.

    1. Oh, and actuaries have rebranded themselves as “data scientists” and become cool and well-paid. Well played actuaries everywhere.

      1. I thought they had always been well paid. Had a school friend who became one and I got the impression he was earning six figures and that was twenty years ago. Although he was the least cool person you could ever meet – very, very dorky.

        I was told training took 6-7 years and you could only take your actuarial exams three times and if you didn’t pass then you weren’t allowed another shot. I’d put that down as a high risk of wasting your twenties!!

      2. Hi D. Restaurant is a French word. It’s a gerund, i.e. a verb form that serves as a noun (as in ‘swimming is fun’, where swimming is a noun. English gerunds end in -ING, and the French equivalent ending is -ANT (cf regardING / regardANT). Restaurant comes from the French verb restaurer meaning to restore. So, restorING = restaurANT. A restaurant is therefore a ‘restoring (place)’ – an establishment where one is restored by being fed and watered. The owner of this place is a RESTORATOR, one who restores his customers. The French equivalent of the agency-indicating suffix -ATOR is -ATEUR (there is also a female version: -ATRICE). Thus in English, we remove the -ING from restorING to leave restor, and then we add -ATOR to give restorator. We do the equivalent in French: we remove the -ANT from restaurANT to leave restaur, and then we add -ATEUR (or -ATRICE) to give restaurateur (or restauratrice). And that’s why there’s no N in restaurateur. Cheers, hope this helps.

        1. One of the most clear and informative comments I’ve seen on this blog (and there are many good ones). Thanks Harmonic so much for taking the time.

          The ‘-atrice’ ending leads to ‘-atrix’ and is discussed brilliantly in some detail along with other ‘feminine’ endings on the Spectacular Vernacular podcast episode ‘sex workers’. Well worth a listen to! (The whole series is pretty good to be honest)

        2. Thanks for the very clear and complete explanation. It’s something I’ve considered many times but never bothered to chase down. And thanks for taking me back to my yoof with the Tarkus album cover!

        3. And the winner of today’s WINK Award (Well! I Never Knew!) is….

          harmonic_row – super-clear explanation. Thanks very much for the enlightenment!

        4. Well I didn’t know that and my French is ok. Does that explain passager v passenger or is that something different.
          I didn’t even notice the missing n on account of doing this at 11pm with a bottle of vin inside me.
          Quite gentle for an izetti. When I saw his name I considered not even starting. Shame on me J

          1. Thanks, J. Didn’t know about passenger, but a quick Google search indicates the presence of a so-called parasitic N (or intrusive N). Every day’s a school day 🙂

        5. Well done! I was just going to try to explain it as it drives me mad when it is wrongly spelt but it’s tricky and you did it very clearly.

  6. The top half went in fairly quickly and the SW but the SE needed much more thought taking my time to 26 minutes.
    FOI: SEE.
    LOI: SCAMPERED. I had Scarpered in mind but could see it didn’t parse.
    I needed all the checking letters for ACTUARIES.
    Favourite: DIFFERENT.

  7. Quite a gentle breeze through in 21 minutes for a pre-flight coffee in the Departures club today. A twist on the SCC which is much more to my liking. Thanks Mike and welcome to the blogging role.

  8. Solve of two halves for me – the top went in without any problems, but the bottom proved much trickier. Like others the (mis)spelling of RESTAURATEUR caused me all sorts of problems.
    Should have got MACEDON more quickly as I’m currently reading Robert Fabbri’s excellent series on the chaotic events following the death of Alexander, but it gets my COD for the PDM.
    Crossed the line with LOI ACTUARIES in a tardy 11.20.
    Thanks and congratulations to Mike for an excellent first blog

  9. Not much to say about a pretty straightforward puzzle, but thanks and congrats Mike on joining the hard-working blog team.

  10. 8’11” to get one pink square – rushed ‘scaRpered’ instead of SCAMPERED.

    I thought the clueing was really eloquent – is that what others mean when they say “smooth surfaces”? It was hard to pick a COD as I thought there were no poor ones. If I had to I’d go with 5D.

    Thanks Izetti and MH

  11. Welcome Mike -good blog and cracking avatar!

    Checked the anagram fodder twice for a missing N … surely it’s there … grrr.

    And to cap it off finished at 07:57 but WOE, having stuck in SCARPERED. I couldn’t see why SCAR = trick but guessed it would be in a dictionary somewhere. What a twerp.

    Many thanks Mike and Don.


  12. 5.04

    18+ mins yesterday, where’s the logic in that? Greek A-Level helped with Macedon and Etas and I knew the “n” thing in the restaurant word.

    Neat and concise from the Don as always. SOLVE was good.

    And an excellent first blog Mr H – here’s to many more.

  13. Thank you Mike and I add my congratulations on your first blog. Quite a tricky introduction I thought, and a bit of a spelling test. Like others I was trying to fit an N into RESTAURATEUR and somehow managed it before CRIMEA put me right.
    After yesterdays ‘slowest time for years’ I was back to some vestige of normality finishing a shade outside target at 10.03.

  14. Welcome to the blogging team, Mike! I got stuck on BALTI until I got PROBED, my SLOI. DNK MACEDON but it was clear from the wordplay and checkers. How many girls get named ENID these days, I wonder? Thank-you Izetti and Mike. 5:48.

    1. Checking for modern Enids on Wikipedia I didn’t find any but was amazed to discover that Dame Diana Rigg’s first name was Enid! If she’d stuck with it she could have been responsible for a whole new generation with the name. Or perhaps her career would never have taken off.

  15. 15 minutes for me with a delay at the end getting RESTAURATEUR which I know how to spell but didn’t think of at first; put off by the Celebrity part.
    That led to last two of SOLVE (COD to that) and DEE which I thought might have been DON-KEY.
    Otherwise fairly smooth but I had to work. Good surfaces as noted.

  16. I couldn’t understand why I came to a halt in the NE corner having completed the rest of the puzzle pretty smoothly, if not terribly quickly. It gradually dawned on me that I must have 6ac wrong. I had entered CUB (from curb) without thinking. What a dipstick!
    As soon as I saw TOT, the rest followed. Some clever clues to accompany a few easy ones and I enjoyed the ride despite going over target. So, a good puzzle and a good blog so thanks to both. John M.

  17. Just could not see DISAGREEMENT or ACTUARIES for a long time, wrote them out and everything, which adds time. Once I had the I from ACTUARIES, then BALTI and SOLVE dropped into place.

    Not my best effort! No problem with the clues, just could not unravel anagrams today, maybe it was the early start to take daughter to swimming for 7 a.m.

    Edit: noted a new blogger on re-reading and other comments – thanks & welcome Mike.


  18. 27.48 for an Izetti seems decent to me, given the last four have been DNFs. Good QC once I got going although I’m not sure that would have happened when I was less experienced. Yet with four anagrams to solve there was always a chance.

    Struggled to spell RESTAURATEUR like others but first attempt at deanagramming it gave STAR… (celebrity) which elongated to become STARTER.. but then realised. Other anagrams were all slow to unravel and needed checkers to help.

    Laughed out loud at BALTImore as had been off track thinking it would be N—Y or L—A.

    Less laughter about needing to know French for father. Even though I studied it for five years, it’s too long ago to remember such a specific word.

    Only BORE was a doubt for me as didn’t know the first def so thank-you to our new blogger Mike for the explanation. All very nicely done

  19. Fairly straightforward, but a struggle to untangle Disagreement and Actuaries at the end nudged me into the SCC, albeit with a choice of window seats. I was another who wondered where the ‘n’ had gone in Restaurateur, but that’s the thing about anagrams: you have to use what’s available. CoD to the neat and simple 15d, Probed.
    Welcome and best wishes to Mike on his first blog.

  20. Another one here who thought that RestauraNteur was the correct spelling. However, as there was no N in the anagram I guessed at the spelling and confirmed it with the CED.

    I had not heard of Actuaries before but finally got it after some letter shuffling. Again another word I had to post answer check with the CED.

    My first solve of the week, and to make it better no aids were used. Even better was that it was an Izetti QC, who is the setter I’ve always struggled with the most in the past.

    Now for the Daily Telegraph cryptic. Yesterday’s one was fairly easy for me with a non-aided solve. Times 15×15 watch out! I’m coming for you soon! 🤣

  21. 13 minutes and very nearly fell into the SCARPERED trap, but second thoughts when I couldn’t equate SCAR with trick saved the day – if it doesn’t parse, it’s probably arse – Rotter’s Second Law. Many thanks Mike for an excellent first blog, and welcome to the team.

      1. Rotter’s First Law – Two-word clues are invariably double definitions. I haven’t yet come up with a snappy or more prosaic description for it but would welcome ideas.

  22. Welcome Mike, and like Doofers last week you seem to have been blessed with a very elegant and not-too-taxing puzzle for your first outing. Coincidence I am sure, but for me to finish an Izetti in just over 8 minutes really does suggest it was not the Don’s most challenging.

    FOI Brass band – not difficult for me as I play in one – and then all done with no real hold-ups, though I did not parse Bore at first, and along with some others toyed with Scarpered, which (mention it quietly because to criticise an Izetti clue is not the done thing …) I think meets the meaning “rushed off” rather better. But Scar does not parse and Scam arrived after only a moment’s more thought.

    Many thanks Mike for the blog and here’s to many more from you

  23. Welcome Mike and thanks for the splendid Blog. I shoved in BAND at 1a and waited for crossers to get BRASS. Then it was a steady plod around the grid, pausing only to recall the spelling of RESTAURATEUR. and revise SCARPERED to SCAMPERED. CRIMEA was LOI. 7:10. Thanks Izetti and Mike.

  24. Aargh, fell at the last – did not get SOLVE. Ironic. Had put Don(key) not DEE.
    No problem with RESTAURATEUR as biffed from checkers and cd spell it (smug smile).
    Among the last were MACEDON, CRIMEA. A PDM with BALTI, also liked ACQUIRE, SCARPERED, DEFT.
    Welcome and thanks vm to Mike

  25. A relief after a frustrating DNF yesterday. 26 minutes (quite speedy for me) with no serious hold-ups.

    I liked BALTI, ACQUIRE and SCAMPERED, but was nearly undone by ENID. I had entered MAID (anagram of ‘aim’ with d for ‘daughter’), which led me to MACEDea/MACEDia/MACEoa – none of which seemed right. Fortunately, I reconsidered and ENID came to mind.

    Many thanks to Izetti and Mike H.

  26. P.S. Not sure why my avatar went missing from my comments above. It’s a photograph of Chanctonbury Ring (on the hill in the distance) in West Sussex, and I can assure everyone that it’s still there.

      1. The picture is taken looking West from just to the East of Wiston House. It’s on my most frequent walk. The overhanging tree is a Holm Oak and is my favourite tree in the area (rather nerdy to have a favourite tree, though).

        1. Not nerdy- very sensible to have a favourite tree ! I can’t function successfully in a new environment until I’ve found one.

  27. 23min but suffering with non COVID coronavirus (common cold) so spent 3 minutes staring at the kitchen table trying to think of a piece of furniture I could add a letter to the beginning of to make a word meaning solid!
    Thanks Mike and Don

  28. 9 minutes today, which I’m very happy about as it’s an Izetti, so I think I’ll claim this as A Good Day. This week is proving to be a bit of a rollercoaster ride so far. I felt Izetti was being quite kind to us today, but suspect there may be some DISAGREEMENT about that!
    3d took its time – I got ASTERS, but tried to make some sort of anagram out of Easter 😂 Too many Es and not Ss, and what Sunday had to do with it, heaven only knows, but that didn’t stop me. Hiddens get me every time.
    A lot of ticks alongside the clues. I like anagrams and there were some crackers today.
    As soon as I saw the checkers for 19d, I thought ENID – my great grandmother’s name – and barely read the clue.
    FOI Brass band LOI Balti COD Solve, although ACTUARIES was a very close second
    Many thanks Izetti, and big thanks and welcome to Mike as our new blogger.

    I had another good day with the 15×15 – 20 minutes again.

    1. Sorry, Penny, I removed your final comment because it related to a puzzle that others may not have tackled yet.

        1. No problem, and I agreed with your comment as it happened. Best leave it there until the blog goes up.

  29. Took a little while to get going but after that it was a steady SOLVE with no real hold-ups. Everything complete and parsed in 15 minutes which is a reasonable time for me. Welcome to Mike as our latest new blogger and thanks also to harmonic_row for explaining why there’s no N in 17ac. Thanks of course also to Izetti for his usual polished offering.

    FOI – 9ac FABLE
    LOI – 13ac ETAS (I was thinking I had to join 2 Greek letters together for something meaning ‘task’. Didn’t see the hidden until after the event!)
    COD – 20ac BALTI

  30. Thank you Mike and congratulations on your first of hopefully many blogs. With the exception of RESTAURATEUR I made quick work of the QC. FOI BRASS BAND and LOI RESTAURATEUR. COD definitely has to go to SOLVE. 6:36 for an excellent day.

  31. 15 minutes and only B – L – I to go and I just gave up without an alphabet trawl.
    Cross with myself because I could have got balti and enjoyed the solve…
    Struggled with the missing n as many others with the Gordon Ramsay.
    Liking Rotter’s Second Law.
    Thanks all

  32. 10:42. Many thanks for taking on a regular blog, Mike, hope you enjoy them! Thanks to Izetti too.

  33. A bit of a slow solve today, trying to do anagrams in my head is not a good plan. With apologies to any actual actuaries, I was told that an actuary was someone who tried accountancy and found it too exciting. Apologies to accountants too!

  34. 21 mins, but a dnf as I got 21ac wrong and put “scarpered”.

    The rest was a nice puzzle from Izetti with the main holds up on the longer clues of 10ac “Disagreement”, 17ac “Restaurateur” and 11dn “Actuaries”.

    FOI – 1ac “Brass Band”
    LOI – 11dn “Actuaries”
    COD – 5dn “Different” – lovely surface.

    Thanks as usual!

  35. An enjoyable puzzle with a wide variety of difficulty, but nothing too easy or too difficult, and completed in slightly less than average time. FOI SEE, LOI BALTI, COD SOLVE. I have never seen ETAS used in the plural, so feel a different could have been used here, felt ACQUIRED = LISTENED was a bit of a stretch, and think that one can BEAR responsibility (eg) only after having previously ASSUMED it. However three pedantic MERs were outnumbered by witty clues and excellent surfaces. Thanks Don and Mike.

    1. But ACQUIRED doesn’t = LISTENED… As I think Mike’s blog makes clear, the clue is ‘GET’, and the answer is a homophone (to listen to…) of ‘a group of singers’ – a choir… Can’t argue with your other two ‘pedantic MERs’ though!

      1. Thanks, Bazdolly, you are quite right. Maybe I didn’t read the clue or blog carefully enough, and my apology to Mike, whose blog was indeed spot on. I actually got the clue very early on, but decided to wait until the Q was confirmed before I wrote it in. In due course I solved the relevant across clue and put the down clue in.

        I am hard of hearing, and often say “I’m sorry, I didn’t get that” where get = hear. So my thought process was something like “Listen=hear=get=acquire”, which is not only dubious but also quite a stretch which IMHO would be too much for a 225-square let alone a QC, though I wouldn’t put it past some setters.

        Hence my ill-advised comment.

  36. Great blog Mike – super clear and well-explained.

    Agree with others that this was on the gentle side for an Izetti – I came in a notch over 6 minutes. Lovely puzzle.

  37. A slow but enjoyable solve in 16:09. Not sure what took so long. I was held up by the long anagrams, but managed to get them without resorting to paper. LOI was SOLVE. Thanks Don and Mike

  38. We enjoyed this, fell into place after a slow start. Finished within target, thanks Izetti.

  39. Congratulations on an excellent blog Mike. As an SCC regular, the blogs are vital and yours today was a model of clarity. I am immensely grateful to you and all the others who perform this task.

    After a day of frustration on Tuesday, I surprised myself by solving this one without too much trouble. Probably just into the SCC but, for an Izetti, I will take it!

    Not sure how, but I seem to be one of the few people who didn’t struggle with the spelling of 17ac. I did however take a while to get to grips with the brilliant 18dn, my LOI.

    COD 24ac.

  40. Some really amusing clues today.
    Done and dusted in one course.
    Does anyone read the posts put up this late in the day?

    1. Definitely! Some of us don’t actually complete the QC until early evening! Biffed Balti and was amused to see BaltiMORE on the blog. Thanks all.

  41. Coming at this rather later in the day. Just outside the SCC which I’m happy with. A tale of two halves. No problems with the top half – the bottom wasn’t so easy. Took ages to spot CRIMEA and really wanted to put that ‘n’ in RESTAURATEUR. Otherwise no problems. Liked BALTI and AQUIRE. Many thanks for a great first blog!

  42. Sprinted through the top half, crawled through the bottom half . Thanks for excellent blog.

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