Posted by Andrew on July 18th, 2008
I started off quickly with this one, with some very easy clues, especially in the SW corner (28ac, 24 and 25dn), but then things got a bit trickier. Got there eventually, with one or two clues that took a bit of working out even when the answer itself was clear (especially 19dn).
dd = double definition
cd = cryptic definition
* = anagram
< = reverse
9. SPOKESMAN – dd – As in the spokes of a wheel.
10. CANTO – CANT O – CANT can be “a slope in the turn of a road or track”
11. AMBER – (ch)AMBER – As in traffic lights
12. ABSENTEES – (a bees nest)* – Nicely misleading definition
13,14. GATWICK AIRPORT – (Patrick I got novel)*
17. ALIBI – BIL(l)< in A1 – “Defence” or (less accurately) “excuse” often indicates ALIBI
20. COMMA – dd – It’s a kind of butterfly.
21,22. THOUGHT READING – THOUGH TREADING
24. PLASTERED – dd
26. IMPEL – (SIMPLE less S)*
29. CHARLOTTE – “Shah lot” – I suppose this refers to a lot in an auction, which could be a “good deal”. Or, much more plausibly, a “good deal” of something is a lot of it – thanks to Octofem
1. OSSA – OS (outsize) + SA(ck)
2. SORBET – BE in SORT
3. RETRAINING – R in RETAINING
4. EMBARK – cd – Not very impressed by this
5. INKSTAND – cd – .. Or this
6. SCAN – SCAN(t)
7. ANTEROOM – (no more at)* – Is a mess particularly likely to have an anteroom? Any army officers reading who can confirm? See Peter Owen’s comment for confirmation.
13. GRAFT – RAF in GT – The indication of the wordplay is misleading, but OK if you read it as “in high-performance car: service”. The RAF is one of the Armed Services.
15. ROCKABILLY – ROCK + A BILLY – It took me ages to spot the wordplay here, until I remembered the Billy Can.
16. TWANG – cd – I guessed DUVET for this at first
18. ISOLATED – (SOLIDATE less CON)* – Con=study is an old-fashioned usage that is fossilised in crosswordese and never seen anywhere else.
19. LITERACY – (CATER)* replaces 2nd L in LILY – Again the wordplay took a bit of working out – the anagram of CATER was obvious but I was misled by the presence of the first L.
22. REDCAP – “Read” on CAP – MP = Military Policeman = redcap.
23. IMPUTE – I + PUT in ME
24. PACT – CAP< + T(he)
27. LIED – dd – Lied is German for “song”, and is typically used to describe songs of the Romantic period in music (the 19th Century, roughly speaking)