Times Quick Cryptic No 939 by Joker

After a slow start, things fell nicely into place as I worked through this. Nothing too taxing, but a few that took a bit of thought – just how the quickie should be, I think. Well that’s how I found it, but your experience may differ. I’d be interested to hear how you all got on. Thanks for this neat puzzle, Joker, and it was good to see we had one of your fellow playing cards here.

By the way, today is your last chance to have a go at Jumbo 1287 before the answers are published. It is on the easy side so may amuse quickie afficionados. And you can get the (perhaps dubious) delights of my blog explaining the answers tomorrow.

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

1 Small group running riot (4)
TRIO – [running] (riot)*.  The group being of three, such as Huey, Dewey and Louie or the Powerpuff girls. Or, if you prefer, the Beaux Arts.
4 Begin introducing law that’s upset faithful (8)
STALWART – START (Begin) [introducing] (law)* giving you a loyal, reliable, and hard-working supporter.
8 Find record has finished (8)
DISCOVER – DISC + OVER. It shouldn’t take you long to find the answer to this one.
9 Severely hit British meat (4)
LAMB – LAM + B{ritish}. My family’s favourite sunday roast. Mint sauce obligatory.
10 New reverend returning to run what ministers do (6)
GOVERN – N + REV reversed after GO. To conduct the policy, actions, and affairs  with authority.
11 Copper on front of short polar dome (6)
CUPOLA – CU + POLA{r} [short]. A dome, such as one of those you can see on St. Basil’s cathedral in Moscow. Aren’t they colourful?
12 Frequently in condition, organ is the latest in technology (5,2,3,3)
STATE OF THE ART – STATE (condition) + HEART (organ) including OFT. What’s your favourite new gadget? It had better work better than this voice recognition operated lift.
16 Part of turkey baster is broken (6)
BREAST – (baster)*. I like cranberry sauce with mine.
17 Ingenious key comes with operating handle (6)
CLEVER – C (key) + LEVER.
19 Bird inside of skip found by waif, oddly (4)
KIWI – Inside of {s}KI{p} + alternate letters [oddly] of W{a}I{f}. The famous flightless bird.
20 Forgetfulness leads to our best violin being shattered (8)
OBLIVION –  start of [leads to] O{ur} B{est} + (violin)*. What did you just say?
21 De Gaulle’s language mostly about English — it turned wild (8)
FRENETIC – This one takes a bit of constructing…. FRENC{h} [mostly] outside E + TI (it turned). From Frenetik in Middle English, which meant ‘insane’.
22 Reportedly expensive source of venison (4)
DEER – Homophone of [reportedly] DEAR. Another meaty clue.
2 Endangered creature Greek character’s keeping at home (5)
RHINO – The Greek character in this case is RHO with IN (at home) inside. I had the privelege of seeing some of these up close as a boy in South Africa.
3 Process of arranging gold treasury share (13)
ORCHESTRATION – OR + CHEST + RATION, arranged thus. Who do you think was best at this? Berlioz, Mahler, Stravinsky, Ravel, or…
4 Small flat playing card? (5)
SEVEN – One of Joker’s 52 companions. S (small) + EVEN (flat).
5 Cooking nearly all tropical fruit (7)
APRICOT – Another gimme. [Cooking] (tropica{l})* [nearly all].
6 Source of oil quietly set aside is still looking good (4-9)
WELL-PRESERVED – WELL + P (quietly) + RESERVED. Like my pickled chillis.
7 Rose Walker (7)
RAMBLER – Double definition. She is also a fictional character in the Sandman series.
10 Reversed slump in American petrol (3)
GAS – SAG reversed gives us the common abbreviation for gasoline. Used to generate air pollution by guzzlers of the road.
13 Row about slip showing dog chasing foxes (7)
TERRIER – TIER (Row) [about] ERR (slip), gives a dog like our first pet, Jock.
14 Remote camp for soldier not in mail (7)
OUTPOST – OUT + POST. You can see a selection of the loneliest here.
15 Deserter’s returning as sailor (3)
TAR – The deserter is a RAT and you reverse to get Jolly Jack.
17 Some tobacco licensing is a pain (5)
COLIC – Hidden [Some] in tobacCO LICensing. Quite a lot of babies get this.
18 Wear down Queen with celebratory poem (5)
ERODE – Her Majesty, ER + ODE. Noli illegitimi carborundum, is what I say.

39 comments on “Times Quick Cryptic No 939 by Joker”

  1. I agree, easiest of the week, 19:27 for me.

    A couple of wrong turns slowed me down : WELL PRESENTED, and the rookie mistake of entering the incorrect deAr at 22a.

    COD the construction of 3D.

    LAM = hit? I thought it was ‘lamp’, as in ‘I lamped him one’

    1. I’d only come across “lam” in the phrase “go on the lam” or “be on the lam”, meaning to be on the run. But my OED tells me that that is a US slang phrase and that lam does indeed mean to beat severely. Every day’s a school day.


  2. Since I did this on a different computer than the one I’m using at the moment, I can only see a blank grid when I ‘review’, which doesn’t prompt memory. I knew LAM only from cryptics; it’s not in my dialect, nor is ‘lamp’. 5:54.
  3. 9 minutes for this one means that I solved all the QCs this week within my target 10, unlike last week when I managed only one of the five. Perhaps vinyl1 is right in suggesting the editor has advised a little restraint.

    Edited at 2017-10-13 04:39 am (UTC)

  4. A terrier is NOT a “dog chasing foxes” (other than in the sense that it’s a dog, and any dog will chase a fox in the right circumstances). Foxhounds chase foxes. Many hunts used to have a terrier-man, who would be called upon if the fox went to earth. The terrier would be put down the hole to yap and snarl at the fox till it bolted again. But that is not chasing it. Terriers chase rats, chickens and postmen. Not foxes.

    Anyway. Yes, an enjoyably easy puzzle, done between Sevenoaks and Hither Green. Only chewed my pen over FRENETIC and STALWART (my LOI). I liked ERODE in particular.

    Thanks to Joker and John.


    1. SOED:

      Terrier: (An animal of) any of various breeds of small active dog, originally trained to turn out foxes etc. from their earths,

      Chase: verb trans. Drive away, out, from, out of, e

  5. Slow start but rattled through it in the end – I know one of the playing cards is a 7 but don’t get this clue
      1. Thanks – I worked that out so I understood it, just didn’t get it! – is six a domino?
  6. Definitely easier than many of late. Started with TRIO, finished with OBLIVION and completed in 6:51. Biffed 12a from enumeration and crossers. Pleasant puzzle. Thanks Joker and John.
  7. Thanks for the blog – not just me looking forward to the weekend’s comestibles then.

    Like merlin_55 I had WELL PRESENTED at 6d until I realised that something had to change for LOI 20a.

    Still managed a reasonable (for me) 14:08.

  8. One or two pauses (4 and 21ac for example) but generally this flowed along nicely. 24mins fully parsed, but with nothing standing out as CoD. Invariant
  9. Ten enjoyable minutes for me (yesterday over twenty).
    Beautifully clued and so the answers were in plain sight for many solvers.
    LOI was Apricot. David
  10. 9 minutes and in full agreement with our blogger – a good QC – quick but with something to think about (which included 13dn and cod 12ac). Loi was apricot as I didn’t catch the anagram indicator for a while.
  11. Nice gentle end to an entertaining week. Liked construction of 3d and 21a. Thx to Joker and our blogger.
  12. A quick solve at 12 minutes for me today, my only slight issues were the parsing of 4a, where I was trying to make an anagram of ‘law that’s’ and 5d.
    Thanks for the blog
  13. surely that ain’t easy – I can usually do the quickie in15 minutes but I don’t get that at all
  14. Another excellent crossword by my favourite setter – and an excellent solution blog. A few points:

    1) Completely agree about the lamb but the best treatment of turkey is to chuck it in the trash.
    2) The best orchestrater (though by no means the best composer) was Elgar.
    3) Vinyl’s explanation of Rose Walker – that it is a chestnut for experienced solvers – is unhelpful. Damned if I geddit!

    1. There is a variety of rose plant known as a rambling rose, and a walker is a rambler.
      The main difference between rambling roses and climbers is that rambling roses usually flower once, whereas climbing roses usually repeat flower throughout summer and autumn, but there are exceptions.
      1. Thanks for stepping in with the more detailed explanation, John. The only thing to add is a tip that when a clue is only 2 words, the chances are it is either a double definition, where the answer is a synonym of both words, or, if it is followed by a question mark, a cryptic definition.
  15. 15 mins so a quick one, and enjoyable.
    Lam was only known from the crosswords.

    Lam: late 16th century: perhaps of Scandinavian origin and related to Norwegian and Danish lamme ‘paralyse’.

    COD 9a lamb.

  16. Nice gentle end to an entertaining week. Liked construction of 3d and 21a. Thx to Joker and our blogger.

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