Times Quick Cryptic No 2379 by Izetti

A fine Quick Cryptic from Izetti today, if a little tricky in parts. 7D, 11A and 21A in particular held me up, taking my up to 6:54. But lots of great clues, my favourite being 1A. Thank-you Izetti! How did you all get on?

Fortnightly Weekend Quick Cryptic. This time it is Phil’s turn to provide the extra weekend entertainment. You can find the crossword (and news of a London get together in June) here. If anyone is interested in our previous offerings you can find an index to all 75 here.

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

1 Letters and numbers for letters! (8)
POSTCODEA lovely cryptic definition to start. It seems obvious when you see it, but I was thinking ciphers, not THAT sort of code at first. [Edit: As AntsInPants has pointed out this is actually an &lit, where the whole clue is both the definition and the wordplay – POST (letters) CODE (numbers for letters). Izetti has spoiled us with a top-drawer clue!].
5 In Bangladesh a happy ruler (4)
SHAH – Hidden in BangladeSH A Happy.
8 What’s funny about strange percussive sound (4,4)
DRUM ROLLDROLL (funny) about RUM (strange).
9 Papal publication something to beware of ? (4)
BULL – Double definition. A papal bull is a type of public decree, letters patent, or charter issued by a pope of the Catholic Church. It is named after the leaden seal that was traditionally appended to the end in order to authenticate it. I love the second definition.
11 The Ten Commandments maybe in sacrament (4,6)
HOLY ORDERS – Double definition, the first a cryptic hint. I was held up by this one not knowing that ordination, i.e. receiving Holy Orders, is a sacrament.
14 Take back worker on sports ground (6)
RECANTREC (recreation ground; sports ground) ANT (worker).
15 Sound of a group of notes in agreement (6)
ACCORD – Sounds like A CHORD (a group of notes).
17 Time gangster is mad. having magic power ? (10)
TALISMANICT (time) AL (Capone; crossword-land’s favourite gangster) IS MANIC (mad).
20 Sound of falling water? Check (4)
REIN – Sounds like RAIN (falling water). Check as in “rein in”.
21 Silly negation makes daughter doomed (8)
ANTIGONE – [Silly] ( negation )*. It took me a while to realise this was an anagram. ANTIGONE is the “doomed daughter” of Oedipus. Read about the play of the same name by Sophocles based on her here.
22 Foreign magistrate , a beast, confronting English (4)
DOGEDOG (beast) E (English). The Doge of Venice  was the chief magistrate and leader of the Republic of Venice between 726 and 1797.
23 Cheer up , just enthralled by Scottish mountain (8)
BRIGHTENRIGHT (just) in BEN (Scottish mountain).
1 Cushions in flats? (4)
PADS -Double definition.
2 Second shed not open (4)
SHUTS (second) HUT (shed).
3 Actor is not funny — this artist tries to be (10)
CARTOONIST – tries to be… funny. ( Actor is not )* [funny].
4 Periods in which the French may get held up — or anyone else (6)
DELAYS –   LE (the in French) [up] -> EL, in DAYS (periods). An inventive semi&lit, where the whole clue is the definition and all but “or anyone else” is the wordplay.
6 Photo Sue dancing where the fiddler was ? (8)
HOUSETOP – ( Photo Sue )* [dancing]. A reference to the musical Fiddler on the Roof. Chaim Topol, who died recently, played the part of Tevye, the lead role in the stage musical and the 1971 film adaptation. In all, he performed the role more than 3,500 times from 1967 through 2009.
7 One’s inclined to take cover, having admitted bad things (8)
HILLSIDE -A bit of a sneaky definition, I think. ILLS (bad things) in HIDE (take cover).
10 Publicity before performance — I celebrate, getting ready (10)
PRACTISING -getting ready… for the performance. PR (publicity) ACT (performance) I SING (celebrate).
12 Dented container with beaujolais? (8)
CRATEREDCRATE (container) RED (beaujolais; red wine). The ? tells us beaujolais is a definition by example. Beaujolais does produce white wines too (see here), but I’m not going to quibble.
13 Chill got sitting in grass leads to telling off (8)
SCOLDINGCOLD (chill) in SING (grass; snitch).
16 Style of fellow, loveless emperor (6)
MANNERMAN (fellow) NER{o} (emperor), without the O (love), i.e. loveless.
18 Bishop unconscious in period of illness (4)
BOUTB (Bishop) OUT (unconscious).
19 Bird in water nearby (4)
TERN – Hidden in waTER Nearby.

76 comments on “Times Quick Cryptic No 2379 by Izetti”

  1. Pretty straightforward, although I also didn’t know HOLY ORDERS is a sacrament. (Well it isn’t; ordination is, but.) 5:49.

  2. There was a kerfuffle the other day on the 15×15 regarding the fairness of clues with two possible answers. Sometimes one is clearly a better answer, but Tern and Erne are identically valid at 19D (unless you have to fit with the crossers). thanks john, nice blog

      1. That is the most perfect comment I have seen on this blog. Succinct with a hint of sarcasm but not too much. As my youngsters would say, ‘slayed!’.

      2. I firmly believe that crossers aren’t necessary in a perfect, the ideal, cryptic clue. That’s why this doesn’t happen very often. Non-cryptics quite often play on deliberate uncertainty that can only be resolved by a crosser. In a cryptic, it seems like a mistake when it crops up (and to my eyes, it’s always a flaw).

    1. I didn’t spot that on solving, but I probably had the checkers in place.

      1. I didn’t, and it caused me to miss my target.

        FOI SHAH
        LOI TERN
        TIME 5:09

  3. 19 mins held up by ANTIGONE, BULL, PRACTISING and HILLSIDE and was about to throw in the towel when ORDERS finally came to mind to complete 11AC.


    Thanks Izetti for a proper challenge and John for the fine blog

  4. 19 minutes. How fitting that this rather hard QC should appear on the same morning as a 15×15 that’s way above average difficulty so that my self-confidence in my solving ability should receive a second blow. But anyway I got there in the end and can’t now claim that anything was unfair.

  5. Oh dear. Overall this has not been a good week for me, rounded off yet again this morning with a No Time Given for lazily bunging in PASSCODE instead of POSTCODE at 1a. Doh! 🤡
    So I estimate that today’s solve took around 2 Hot Water Boosts, or 30 minutes in all.
    I am not a classicist but did manage to haul up ANTIGONE from somewhere in the dark recesses of my mind, and thus surprised myself. However my favourite clue had to be TALISMANIC. Very neat.
    Have lovely weekends all 👍

    1. I too had PASSCODE to start with, but i didn’t seem right so I thought again.

  6. Three pink squares for three errors yesterday (horrific typo) and three more today but only one error. Couldn’t see past ‘holy creeeds’ which fitted and seemed religious enough, so in it went. Held up in the SW too, even REIN held me up after ‘drip’ and ‘tick’ wouldn’t work and I couldn’t think of another word. SCOLDING too. 21m to failure.

  7. DNF, PASSCODE sort of worked, and being FOI I never went back to it. Also had RAIN, where I thought “rain check” accounted for the “check”.

    Was running slow, and just managed to recall ANTIGONE. I was thinking it must be one of King Lears daughters.

    GLAD is in BANGLADESH, so works as a hidden for “happy”, at 5 A, but then the “ruler” in the clue is unaccounted for.


  8. This felt very Fridayish even though I knew most of the GK (POI HOLY ORDERS went in with fingers crossed).
    Was very tempted by PASSCODE at 1a when all the checkers were in place but couldn’t make it work so had a rethink. Had a slight MER at CRATERED for dented as I think of craters as being much bigger, although I’m sure it’s supported by the usual sources.
    Finished in 13.18 with LOI HILLSIDE, which I’m reasonably happy with despite being over target. Particularly enjoyed POSTCODE and TALISMANIC.
    Thanks to John

  9. I was up for an enjoyable challenge when I saw the setter’s name – I normally enjoy his offerings. However, this was Izetti at his trickiest and most devious IMO. Total wipeout for me (time wise). I cannot connect with the rapid solvers above. This must be my slowest solve ever – deep into the SCC but I did finish it.
    Thanks for a comforting word from jackkt who found it ‘rather hard’ (unlike Kevin!). I hope I am joined by one or two others who found this tricky. If not, I think I’ll throw in the towel. This was very clever but definitely not a QC in my book, despite a few easy clues mixed in with the rest.
    Thanks to John. John M.

    1. Dear Blighter,
      Please don’t “throw in the towel”. I have only just tackled this so-called QC from Izetti (a day late) and I’m with you in finding it decidedly “tricky”. After my first full pass through the clues, which took 10 minutes, I had solved only three clues. I got there in the end, but only after 52 minutes of toil.
      Good luck next week!

      1. Thanks, RC. It was just my way of showing my annoyance. I think I would need a whole string of difficult puzzles before I really would stop doing the QCs.
        I was satisfied that so many other solvers felt as I did. John

        1. In today’s Times Puzzles Newsletter, Richard Rogan, the Times Crossword Editor admits that he saves harder QCs for Fridays. This may have been on the tricky side, but didn’t we get easier ones earlier in the week? I bet Monday’s will be easier.

  10. I’m with Blighter and Jack. I found this incredibly difficult largely because I didn’t have the necessary GK. I did get TALISMANIC and ANTIGONE from the word play but I gave up at 23 minutes having not solved the ORDERS part of HOLY ORDERS and BULL.

  11. ‘A little tricky in parts.’ Hmm, that’s one way of describing this QC from Izetti: I might choose something a little stronger. Got there in the end, around the 30 min mark, but it was pretty hard going, especially in the bottom half of the grid. Practising, Antigone, Talismanic and Scolding all needed a crowbar to tease out, but then if it doesn’t kill you… CoD to one of the earlier ones, the predictive 4d, Delays. Invariant

  12. I went into this wide awake and up for the challenge. I felt fairly philosophical about being presented with a Izetti at the end of a good week, thought nothing could spoil my mood. By the end of it was I back to spitting oaths and wondering why the editor thinks Izetti is appropriate for the Quick. Late March, it was another Izetti which left me in a funk with his references to religion, dogs, music and boats. I don’t think we got the boats this time. I don’t care enough to go look through again.

    I ended up with a 1hr14+ DNF having plumped for HOLY-CREEDS. Did try correcting it for 5 mins to take my time attempting it to the total time spent on the other four this week. Mon 11:11min corrected DNF, Tues 30:10 corrected DNF, Weds 27:11 (10+ alphabet trawl to end), Thurs 11:30 solve.

    Nothing came easily. Beyond his choice of subject matter, I always find the problem with Izetti is that when he gives you a ‘easy’ clue, you’ve got so used to things being difficult you overthink it. TALISMANIC and PRACTISING would be good examples of that today – they took me well past 30-mins to get. Not helped by NHO BULL, ANTIGONE ad dredging DOGE from last year.

    Rant over … have a good weekend everybody 👍

    PS By the way there are 9 Ns in the lower half of the grid! New keyboard on order.

    1. What a difference a day makes! I’m still staggered by your awesome performance yesterday. There was some tricky stuff today so forget it and move on. I was lucky with some of the GK , but many people struggled. I agree with your comment about overthinking an easy clue. That is of my common failings.

      Have a great weekend. Hope the sun shines!

    2. 52 minutes for me, albeit a day late. So I agree that Izetti gave us a brute of a QC this time.
      However, and more to the point, “COME ON THE CHERRIES!” tomorrow. Let’s hope they burst West Ham’s bubbles.

      1. Good work on the 52-mins. I have generally put yesterday’s pain behind me but the facts are seared into my brain that it was only at 57-mins I finally unlocked the SW with RECANT, SCOLDING and CRATERING … and still had BULL / HILLSIDE / HOLY… left

        Some interesting results today with Leicester getting a win over Wolves and Palace drawing with Everton. Looking at the bottom 4-5 who each have six games remaining and less than 30pts, I think we may only need one more win (36pts) to assure ourselves of survival. I expect more though given our recent form 🤞

  13. 16 minutes. I would second what has already been said. Some difficult ones here of which I found TALISMANIC the hardest.

  14. Stiff challenge, especially with my final trio POSTCODE (COD), DELAYS and HOLY ORDERS (LOI). Bit sneaky to clue that as a “sacrament” in my book, since despite having attended a number of ordinations I didn’t see the connection (and even once I’d realised what the answer must be, I stared at it in doubt for a while before clicking submit). [*on edit* – as simjt has pointed out below, the Church of England does not consider Ordination to be a sacrament, which is why I didn’t think of it as such.]

    As well as my COD I really enjoyed PRACTISING, ANTIGONE and HILLSIDE. All done in 10:24 for 1.9K and a Phew Day.

    Many thanks Izetti and John.


  15. 7:53

    Seemed above-averagely-trickier to me, certainly required a higher level of answer-building, but worked around the grid picking up the easier (?) fare generating checkers for the less-straightforward answers. I enjoyed the challenge though.

    Wasn’t sure about BULL – heard of the papal version but didn’t know what it was – and HOUSETOP which unless I am missing something particular to the Fiddler On The Roof story, seemed like a bit of a jump from ‘roof’ (which a HOUSETOP undoubtedly is).

    Thanks Izetti and John

  16. Kevin seems to be an outlier in thinking this straightforward! I’ll add to those falling into the tricky camp. Everything just took longer than normal.

    As with all Izetti’s clues – it’s there if you look for it. TALISMANIC, ANTIGONE, CRATERED, POSTCODE and DRUM ROLL were all constructed.

    Good job we have the word “roof”, I’m sure Fiddler on the Housetop wouldn’t have been so successful.

    I didn’t have the difficulty others did with HOLY ORDERS – it seemed a neat cryptic definition of the 10 commandments.

    LOI was REIN, making double sure which was the homophone, and which was the definition.


  17. DNF in 11:49, having made the foolish error of entering RAIN instead of REIN. I must try harder to remember the rule for homophones that the definition comes at the beginning or the end of the clue.
    No problem with Holy Orders as a sacrament- it is one of the seven that the Catholic Church recognise, although as an Anglican I am taught that there are only two sacraments – Baptism and the Eucharist.

    1. Ah, thank you. That would explain it.

      I’ve now reminded myself of the 39 Articles, which do indeed say that only Baptism and the Eucharist are Sacraments of the Gospel. Article 25 says that Ordination (or Holy Orders) is one of five other rites which “are not to be counted for Sacraments of the Gospel, being such as have grown partly of the corrupt following of the Apostles, partly are states of life allowed in the Scriptures; but yet have not like nature of Sacraments with Baptism, and the Lord’s Supper, for that they have not any visible sign or ceremony ordained of God.” (The other four are Holy Matrimony, Confirmation, Confession and Anointing of the Sick.)

    2. I think the rule for homophones is to look for which word the homophone indicator is linked to. In this case, ‘sound of falling water’ indicates that rain is the homophone so the answer is the other one. It always works that way. 15a was another example today; ‘sound of group of notes’ indicates the homophone so the answer is the other word. While it may be the case that the answer is at the beginning or end (is it always?) that would not help in all situations. For example, if todays clue had read ‘Check sound of falling water’ you would not find the answer simply by looking for the beginning or end. You have to look for the homophone indicator. Hope that helps.

  18. Taken just into the SCC, but for a DNF as I biffed ANTIDOTE for the NHO ANTIGONE. I admit that antidote has very few redeeming features to recommend it as an answer, but by that time I was past caring. Otherwise, I enjoyed the challenge as always with the Don. Thanks to Izetti and John.

  19. into SCC territory at 20:45. A challenging QC methinks. Didn’t care for Housetops but.. Roofs possibly in Sue’s photo?
    Thanks J & I

  20. I joined Rotter in putting in ANTIDOTE even though it had nothing to recommend it as an answer. Having failed to spot it was an anagram I was as doomed as the unknown (to me) ANTIGONE. Other than that, it was a halfway decent time of 10.27 considering the difficulty of the grid, and the fact that I spent over a minute on getting my LOI wrong.
    My total time for the week was 39.41, giving me a daily average of 7.56. This of course feels somewhat flawed by my final error.

  21. I appear to be in a small minority in finding this very addressable, with a 9 minute finish to end a Strange Week with superfast times (for me that is, 53 minutes in total) but two DNFs. The answers came regularly enough, all the way to my LOI Talismanic, and by then with all the checkers and a start of T-L I tried AL (as John says, Crosswordland’s favourite gangster) to give TAL- at the start and the solution appeared. The advantage of practice and experience – when I started the QC I would never have thought of Al.

    Much enjoyed, and the Saturday Special still to look forward to – makes up for the gloomy and unseasonally cold morning. Many thanks John for the blog.


    1. I had the right gangster in mind, but sadly in the wrong position for far too long.

  22. Took me a good while to really get into this but eventually finished in 29:04 after a much quicker second half. Sadly, typing MANNEA gave me a pink square – stupid boy – but it could have been worse. My dad called his profession Clerk in Holy Orders, so that helped. Also, having acted in Antigone at school, the doomed daughter was known to me although it took me a while to realise we were in anagram territory. Lots of good, if chewy clues. I liked POSTCODE and DELAYS was clever. Thanks Izetti and John.

  23. 5.50. Just one second behind Kevin who is the man I like to beat. Doesn’t happen too often though. COD to “ talismanic“

  24. Way too difficult for me. Only managed to answer 15 clues, two of them with help.

  25. Very hard and needed help to find answer to NEGATION anagram and was a DNF as put RAIN (as in rain check) not REIN. Took ages to get HILLSIDE and needed all checkers for BRIGHTEN and CRATERED, especially as Beaujolais can be white too.

  26. Very tricky. Cut short my efforts on 30 minutes with 21ac and 16dn unsolved. Also had ‘rain’ at 20ac thinking of rain check. Not at all sure I would have got ANTIGONE even if I had realised it was an anagram – a little obscure for a QC I think. Might have managed to biff MANNER if I had had the crosser from 21ac but I doubt that I would have managed to call the emperor to mind. Not a good week – roll on next Monday!

    FOI – 5ac SHAH
    LOI – DNF
    CODs – 1ac POSTCODE and 11ac HOLY ORDERS

  27. Really enjoyed this one and unlike many commenters did not find it higher difficulty, finishing in 18 mins which is average for me. I was looking forward to finding out from the blog how to parse PASSCODE and now realise why I could not. So actually a DNF at 18 mins.
    COD to TALISMANIC which was easy to assemble from the clue but clever all the same.
    Thanks John for the blog. Prof

  28. Ach! I was doing so well, though extremely slowly – a few more came to me in the next hour or so – but now I’ve had to throw in the towel (same expression as others, I now see). Like Johninterred I had problems at 7d, 11a and 21a (but unlike him, couldn’t do them at all – sadly ignorant of ANTIGONE) – but failed also to suss 10d (celebrate = sing?). Even 5a held me up (like Merlin) due to “glad”. Drat, I put in RAIN, thinking (cf. Merlin again – I’m honoured to be thinking alike with this great mind) link with “rain check” but agree the parse is not rigorous enough. But I managed POSTCODE and TALISMANIC, so not too bad perhaps, given the apparently general agreement that this was not one of the easiest QCs. Thanks to all.

  29. 8.32 but bunged in PASSCODE at the end

    Definitely seemed above average difficulty but no complaints here

    Thanks John and Izetti

  30. 27:43. Lots of problems-glad to have escaped in one piece. Erne for TERN, thinking brae instead of BEN, passcode for POSTCODE, and not seeing the anagram of negation all sent me down wrong paths. BULL (“something to beware of”)reminded of the discussion we had here several months ago about Withnail and I and the scene where our heroes survive an exciting encounter with a “randy bull”.

  31. As a 25 min solver I’m chuffed to bits to finish this in 50 with no biffs.
    I’m indebted to my son who studied Antigone for GCSE 5 years ago. J

  32. 12:19 The top half mostly went in easily but the bottom half was tougher. Eventually I got TALISMANIC from “magic” and the T and S checkers, leading to the final four SCOLDING, PRACTISING, MANNER and ANTIGONE. With both a PB and a trip to the SCC I completed the week in 59.29, beating the hour for the first time.

  33. Dnf…

    Really wasn’t on this at all – and after 45 mins with still a few to go I had to concede.

    I now see I also had a few wrong:
    1ac Passcode and 15ac “Intune” (although the former I knew was iffy and the latter would probably have been two separate words).

    DNK 21ac “Antigone” and I thought Fiddler was on the “Rooftop”.

    Bad end to a mixed week.

    FOI – 2dn “Shut”
    LOI – dnf
    COD – 23ac “Brighten”

    Thanks as usual!

  34. A nice puzzle. I took an age to get LOI- HOLY ORDERS
    I won’t be having a go at the 15×15, given the SNITCH. It would take me all weekend.

  35. Much too hard for me. I still don’t think izetti is a QC setter. Never enjoy his puzzles

  36. Add me to the ‘very hard’ group. Religion not being my thing Holy Orders was a mystery, ‘cratered’ didn’t seem a good match for ‘dented’. I couldn’t get ‘password’ out of my head for 1a and altogether ’blood out of a stone’ was the appropriate epithet for the rest.

  37. DNF ++!
    Busy day, but even if I’d had more time, fear it would not have helped. Might have got ANTIGONE if I had noticed the anagram?? But TALISMANIC is not part of my every day vocab.
    Got HILLSIDE but cd not parse. Did manage the Fiddler. Will draw a veil over rest of my errors.
    Thanks, John, but IMO this one was too difficult for the SSC/ beginners.

  38. I was ready to come on here and whinge about how I never seem to improve. However, after reading the above comments, I am now very happy with a finish just under the 30 min mark. It was tough, but the clues were fair. Struggled at the end with HOLY ORDERS and PRACTISING, but knew other tricky ones such as BULL . I got ANTIGONE from a code word used in Colonel Sun, the James Bond book written by Kingsley Amis that was sent in Greece. Is that Ninja turtling?

    Thanks for an entertaining and enlightening blog John and best wishes to everyone for the weekend.

    1. Well done with your 30-mins GA. Excellent time. You continue to be solve successfully, even if not always quickly 👍

      1. Thanks L-Plates. Mixed bag of a week for both of us, but your brilliant time on Thursday is the stand out.

    2. Well done Gary. And an official Ninja Turtling Club Member badge for you to boot.

  39. Does one need to be a Catholic to do the QC? Papal BULL and Catholic sacrament of HOLY ORDERS! Perhaps RECANT as well. And definitely NHO ANTIGONE or DOGE. 70 years of being an Anglican clearly isn’t enough for the QC.

    1. Our setter is also a long time setter for the Church Times and an ecclesiastical term or too in his crosswords is a trademark. Finding words and meanings that are new to me from crossword clues is part of the fun of it for me.

  40. izetti is always hard but good practice to graduate from the nursery slopes.

    think holy orders is a bit unfair as there is no helpful wordplay. I would try and think of a better clue but it’s the weekend so I’m on some proper job followed by a nice red. thanks

    1. Holy Orders was where I DNFed.

      I thought about it on my run later and concluded I might have spotted “commandments” hints at “orders” i.e. you command or order someone to do something.

      As for graduating off the nursery slopes, I would prefer to go try the 15×15 and accept failing at that while learning new tricks and preserving success at the QC.

      1. there is quite a gulf between the quick and 15×15 so sometimes a hard (but fair) QC is useful.

      2. Sorry. I missed the second paragraph in your comment and replied on similar lines myself. “Thou shalt read a commenters comments properly” might be a bloggers’ commandment.

    2. HOLY ORDERS. I thought the wordplay was helpful. The clue is a DDCH – a double definition, with (the first) a cryptic. It was a PDM for me when I cracked the cryptic hint “The Ten Commandments”, with most of them starting “Thou shalt…”. I think I would have needed an alphabet trawl to solve it just from “sacrament”.

  41. One day late, but maybe someone will read this.

    I am in the ‘this was very tough for a QC’ camp. I rarely find Izetti easy, but having only solved SHAH, SHUT and TERN during the 10 minutes my first pass took me, I realised I was in for a rough ride. After a half an hour I had completed the NW corner and some clues in the NE, but (apart from TERN) the bottom half of the grid was still totally empty.

    In the end I crossed the line in 52 minutes, but only after agonising over ANTIdOtE for a long time before crossing my fingers and plumping for the NHO ANTIGONE. Phew!

    Thankyou Izetti and John.

    1. Well done for persevering. I get a similar experience sometime on the Mephisto or MCS.

  42. I’m quite surprised no-one has questioned the blogger’s parsing of POSTCODE. Surely it is an &lit: POST (Letters) and CODE (numbers for letters). For me, the fact the definition is cryptic is just icing on the cake.

    1. Not sure I agree with your breakdown although it may be valid.

      I saw it as Letters and numbers e.g. NW1 1AA that are put on letters / post / mail – which I think is how John has parsed it in the blog.

      1. I think that parsing is fine and rather clever… but maybe too clever for a QC, so I’ll stick with my original parsing. I wonder what our setter intended? We may never know.

      2. Yes, that is the cryptic definition, as I already acknowledged. But that doesn’t stop it being an &lit too, which I feel sure was Izetti’s intention.

        And just to be clear, I’m not saying his parsing was entirely wrong, but I think it does the clue a bit of a disservice to parse it only as a CD.

        1. On reflection, you are quite right. I’ll update the blog for future reference. Thanks.

  43. Also a day late, after putting this one aside with just the last 5 to do. Held up by having PORE instead of REIN, which also kinda-sorta works. Agree that this was tricky: I was well into the SCC at 27:00. Glad I don’t do the Friday blog!

    Thanks to John & Izetti.

    1. You don’t want to swap then? How about taking on the Monthly Club Special for me?

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