Times Saturday 23844 (Feb 23)

Posted on Categories Weekend Cryptic
My broadband connection was down all weekend, hence the lateness of this report.

A bit of a theme to this one, with TIMES, CROSSWORD and LISTENER appearing in the grid. No time recorded, as I did it from the paper at a hotel breakfast table.


1 PENT,ATONIC=action* – limited scale as it only has five notes instead of seven.
9 HE(LMS)MAN – LMS was the London, Midland and Scottish railway.
10 OP,T(I)ON – style=TON, one to watch out for.
11 STUBBS – “stubs”. The one who painted horses. I thought “is striking” was a bit odd, but Chambers confirms it.
14 MILKING STOOL – nice cryptic definition.
17 RESOUNDINGLY (ungodly siren)*
21 BO(ST)ON – Massachusetts is a commonwealth, not a state. I don’t think there’s a difference though.
26 SO,LID,STATE – clever definition “with chips”.


2 ELECT,R(un),I(current),C(about) – the &lit definition makes the cryptic reading a bit clumsy.
4 (wha)T,I(ME)S – a much better &lit here.
5 NO(N,PL)US – can NOUS mean “mind” though?
7 N(oxious),ETHER,LANDS
12 BAKER STREET (break setter)* – Sherlock Holmes lived at 221b. Unusually, both words anagrammed separately.
16 FLOOD,LIT – I’ve always thought the correct usage was “lighted” for this meaning, but Chambers says either is OK.
18 UTENSIL (in lutes)* – the vegetable slicer, not the musical instrument.
21 BLOOD – replace R with L in BROOD

3 comments on “Times Saturday 23844 (Feb 23)”

  1. State vs Commonwealth has to do with the constitutions of the states when they were drafted (go Wikipedia). In 5d, I think nous is meaning intelligence or canniness, close enough to mind that I didn’t have much problem with the answer. Nonplus is a great word, use it often.
  2. In philosophy, a rough equivalent of mind.
    From the Greek, nous: mind, intelligence, intuitive apprehension.
    There is a philosophical journal of this title.


  3. A couple of the “easies” would describe me perfectly – according to Mrs Npbull.

    There are nine of these little beauties:

    7a Very curious numbers must lead to Ptolemy’s conclusion (4)
    NOS Y

    13a Auditor left altered entries (8)

    20a One may find some workers like this break period (4-4)

    23a Increase in importance for cocktail (8)

    25a Check carefully about son’s undergarment (4)
    VE S T

    3d Male to male (3)
    TO M

    8d Gems of singular hues (6)

    15d Unpleasant behaviour, as can get head coming round (9)

    24d Only manservant’s top half? (3)
    BUT (LER)

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