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jack aubrey

15th January 2023, 23:18
I sit corrected and shan’t question the CIA!’s figures. (Although many years ago and in another life I did have a major run-in with the CIA over the carrying of firearms, which was escalated to a stratospherically high diplomatic level - I certainly had difficulty breathing there - and which, to my great astonishment, was resolved as I had wanted.)
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jack aubrey

15th January 2023, 23:19
Forgive the spurious exclamation mark. Butterfingers…..
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16th January 2023, 08:03
Many thanks Krauton - I should have spotted that!
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16th January 2023, 08:39 you say regarding the large number. Who knew!? 😲
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16th January 2023, 09:40
long time first time... I haven't been this baffled by a puzzle in a fair few months! Stuck on a few clues and any hints would be appreciated

"Having multiple fates..." fairly certain I've got the god thanks to alphabet order, but no clue what timeless church could help me approach a misprinted definition

"Brag for one..." Think I've got the typo but can't find any words that fit in that part of the alphabet... is the large number only one letter?

"Likely to thrall..." There's a misprint which seems obvious, but not sure if I should be thinking of a particular old city or a particular shade of black or type fo defence to work the cryptic together

Dreading trying to put the whole thing together in the grid as I'm completely baffled by how the thematic clues need to be modified, but feels like I might be able to brute force it when I've got those last two long ones solved.

Thanks in advance for any nudges.
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16th January 2023, 09:55
For the 12 letter answer there is a misprint in the third word.
For the 11 letter answer you are looking for the 3 definitions you refer to with the 1st in the 2nd after the 3rd.
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16th January 2023, 16:24
Took me a long time to work out how to adjust the thematic answers to get them in the grid, then got held up at the end using the wrong d's, not a problem that anyone else seems to have encountered.

Overall pretty good, marred fairly heavily I would say by the 8th across answer, as others have said. Not only is there no justification for the answer, but I'm struggling to see the justification for the last three letters in the wordplay, other than an obsolete definition that isn't flagged as such. If you're going to push the boundaries with the answer, the wordplay should be watertight IMV.

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16th January 2023, 16:44
Loved this! I was fairly nervous at the start, and as always with these sorts of puzzles (not a single clue can be straightforwardly solved and entered at the start) it took me quite some time to really break into it, but ultimately it went pretty well.

It was a rare case of my degree subject actually coming in handy—I was able to spot the theme after noticing spaces for two thematic entries in the grid before having solved any from clues, and from that point things fell into place relatively quickly.
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17th January 2023, 11:11
Having problems with the 11 letter "White ants" clue. Is there a misprint maybe in the third word? Would appreciate a nudge.
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17th January 2023, 11:13
Correction , fourth word.
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