i Cryptic Crossword 3626 by Raich

September 21, 2022

Difficulty rating (out of 5): ⌛⌛

A bit short of time this morning so apologies for a fairly brief blog.

I made a slow start with only 14 and 26 from the acrosses, then a few downs gave a toehold on the gateway clue at 11ac, and to speed things up a wordfinder gave me the answer. After that it was mostly plain sailing, although the French département at 16 might be unfamiliar to some, as well as the boys at 25.

Nothing struck me as being a CoD, but I liked some of the short entries, such as 5, 8 and 23dn.

As usual, full details appear on fifteensquared, where there’s also a comment from the setter about the significance of the puzzle’s appearance on that particular date. All to be found at http://www.fifteensquared.net/2018/09/30/independent-on-sunday-1492-raich/

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10 Responses to “i Cryptic Crossword 3626 by Raich”

  1. jonofwales said

    Two for difficulty is fair. This was good as ever from Raich, but the longer themed answers meant that here, at least, it didn’t fall as readily as his puzzles often do. A sobering theme as noted on the other side.

  2. Cornick said

    Fortunately the gateway clue fell straight away – a leader who ends in an ‘IN’ preceded by a synonym for hall was not too hard today. After that all pretty straightforward with a very well realised theme which gives the lie to the idea that crosswords never have HITLER in. But the first time I’ve ever seen him.

    • Saboteur said

      It took me aback somewhat, when I realised what the entry was. I don’t recall seeing it before, but the theme makes it perfectly legitimate, in my opinion. A bit surprised that there was nothing pejorative in the clue definition, though.

  3. Saboteur said

    Yes ⏳⏳ for me too. As others have commented, the theme had a sobering and thought-provoking effect, particularly in the light of the present European war. Its not often a crossword makes me so reflective. No parsing problems, and no help needed from dictionaries or the internet. One quibble though: surely the phrase was Peace *in* our time? Chamberlain was quoting from the Book of Common Prayer. Any former chorister would recognise the phrase from Evensong.

  4. thebargee said

    Yep, ⏳⏳ here also. Luckily, the gateway clue was pretty much a write-in, so the linked and themed answers fell pretty quickly. I too was slightly puzzled by ‘for’ rather than ‘in’ in 1ac, but if Wikipedia is to be believed, ‘for’ is indeed correct.
    The only one I struggled with today was my LOI, 25dn, where the 2 unchecked letters were entered without much confidence, but sure enough, the big golden tick in the app duly appeared. Favourite today was, I think, 19ac, where the sense of ‘champ’ raised a smile.

  5. Borodin said

    Thanks, all, for the comments. As saboteur says, the theme had a sobering and thought-provoking effect, particularly in the light of the present European war – and the puzzle’s appearance today, even if fortuitous, particularly so, given Putin’s latest moves.
    I’ve checked 1ac in the Concise Oxford Dictionary of Quotations, which confirms ‘peace for our time’. It also has another quote from Chamberlain: ‘In war, whichever side may call itself the victor, there are no winners, but all are losers.’ Also appropriate to the present time, I think.

    • Grodnik said

      One further quotation: “The days of tank armies fighting on european soil are over”. Source; the serial liar, who is now fortunately out of office, to justify his incompetence when Foreign Secretary. NDY (although it seems much more likely after today).

  6. dtw42 said

    Didn’t get to start this until the evening, so was glad it wasn’t too taxing. Put me down as another who would have expected ‘in’ our time.
    HITLER was actually my last one in. Agreed with Saboteur’s comment there.

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