Times Saturday 23521

Solving time 17:37

I found this quite hard to get into, and quite hard to finish off – there were a few unusual words but none I didn’t already know. And some very good clues.


1 BI(PO)DS – P.O. = Petty Officer or Pilot Officer. A bipod is one of those two-legged stands they support high-powered rifles on.
11 OFFER (“Offa”) – Offa was an old (d. 796) king of Mercia, who built Offa’s Dyke to keep the Welsh out.
19 ST,REAM – a burn is a small stream or brook in Scotland.
21 DE(TENT)E(m) – tent is a Spanish red wine found only in crosswords.
24 N(EARTH)EB,ONE – I’d always thought NEB was a bird’s beak, but Chambers confirms it can also mean nose.
26 P(RA)D,O – The Prado is Madrid’s major art gallery.
27 I,M(anoeuvre),MIG,RATE
30 W(ANT)AD – “what could be classified” is a great definition.


6 STOCK,IN,(s)ETTE(e) – I put this in without really following the wordplay, just figured it out now.
7 AFFECTION – (tiff one ca(n))* – well-phrased &lit too.
9 LETTER (hidden rev in cigaRETTE Lighter) – brilliantly disguised definition, last answer I put in, accounting for maybe 5 of the 17 minutes.
18 R.E.,VEREND=Denver*
20 MOA,BITE – great clue, although as the moa was 10 feet tall and weighed up to 250kg, I fear for the old Jordanian’s health!
25 O,PART – the name Bridget Riley always springs to mind, although I’m sure she’s not the only exponent.

One comment on “Times Saturday 23521”

  1. I also found this quite tricky but it yielded its secrets eventually. There are two clues where I couldn’t get the wordplay – 6d which was blogged – thanks Linxit – and 14a. Yes 3 letter answers can be tricky if you can’t get the wordplay!

    Quite a few “easies”:

    14a Potter needed a reminder (3)
    CUE. No idea why but C*E and “reminder” – for an actor to deliver lines for example – has to be this?

    15a I’ll reveal key to Times puzzle (7)
    E X POSER. The key of E (not sure whether its major or minor), Times = X and POSER = puzzle.

    17a Length of material that is needed as absorbent cloth (6)
    HANK IE. Messed about with ELL = measure of cloth for too long before the penny dropped. Hint to travellers – don’t put your hankie into the laundry in places like Iran – they will throw it away.

    23a Kind of pudding son rejected in the past (3)
    (S) AGO

    29a Worried mostly by women’s struggles (8)

    3d Hell of a girl (3)
    DIS. Or DI’S which is that belonging to Di.

    5d During most of trip, companion’s aware of what’s happening (2,5)
    IN TOU CH. In tou(r) = during most of trip.

    13d (Steamers not)* wrecked in extreme geographical location (11)

    16d Condescending manner, the custom in restaurant? (9)

    21d Swindle over a period, and you may have to (2,4)

    22d Fruit to handle in two batches (6)

    28d New driver fails to get to final destination, a place in India (3)
    GOA (L)

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