0122-20 NY Times Crossword 22 Jan 20, Wednesday

Constructed by: Alex Eaton-Salners
Edited by: Will Shortz

Today’s Reveal Answer: Six-Pack of Beer

There are SEVEN letters C circled in the grid, and by joining them together we can trace a number 7. And, each of those letters C is part of the name of one of the SEVEN SEAS:

  • 57A Result of connecting the circled letters in a certain way, in a punny manner of speaking : SEVEN SEAS
  • 17A Like calypso music : CARIBBEAN (SEA)
  • 19A Atoll material : CORAL (SEA)
  • 21A Porcelain : CHINA (SEA)
  • 23A SS ___, onetime flagship of the White Star Line : ADRIATIC (SEA)
  • 34A Second Monopoly avenue : BALTIC (SEA)
  • 45A Prince of Narnia : CASPIAN (SEA)
  • 55A Hugo ___, longtime Supreme Court justice : BLACK (SEA)

… a complete list of answers

Bill’s time: 6m 40s

Bill’s errors: 0

Today’s Wiki-est Amazonian Googlies

Across

14 Biblical shepherd : ABEL

The story of Cain and Abel not only appears in the Christian and Hebrew Bibles, it also features in the Qur’an. In the Muslim account the brothers are named Qabil and Habil.

16 Send to cloud nine : ELATE

I don’t think that anyone is really certain of the etymology of the term “on cloud nine” meaning “elated”, but I do like the following explanation. The 1896 “International Cloud-Atlas” was a long-standing reference used to define cloud shapes that was based on a classification created by amateur meteorologist Luke Howard some decades earlier. The biggest and fluffiest of all cloud shapes (and most comfortable-looking to lie on) is cumulonimbus. And you guessed it, of the ten cloud shapes defined in the atlas, cumulonimbus was cloud nine …

17 Like calypso music : CARIBBEAN (SEA)

The Caribbean Sea takes its name from the Island Carib people. The Island Caribs are an American Indian people that live in the Lesser Antilles islands, part of the West Indies.

The musical style known as calypso originated in Trinidad and Tobago, but there seems to be some debate about which influences were most important as the genre developed. It is generally agreed that the music was imported by African slaves from their homeland, but others emphasize influences of the medieval French troubadours. To me it sounds more African in nature. Calypso reached the masses when it was first recorded in 1912, and it spread around the world in the thirties and forties. It reached its pinnacle with the release of the famous “Banana Boat Song” by Harry Belafonte.

19 Atoll material : CORAL (SEA)

The Coral Sea is part of the South Pacific Ocean lying off the northeast coast of Australia. It is home to the renowned Great Barrier Reef.

An atoll is a coral island that is shaped in a ring that encloses a lagoon. There is still some debate as to how an atoll forms, but a theory proposed by Charles Darwin while on his famous voyage aboard HMS Beagle still holds sway. Basically an atoll was once a volcanic island that had subsided and fallen into the sea. The coastline of the island is home to coral growth which persists even as the island continues to subside internal to the circling coral reef.

20 It’s a gas : NEON

Neon was discovered in 1898 by two British chemists Sir William Ramsay and Morris Travers. They chilled a sample of air, turning it into a liquid. They then warmed that liquid and separated out the gases that boiled off. Along with nitrogen, oxygen and argon (already known), the pair of scientists discovered two new gases. The first they called “krypton” and the second “neon”. “Krypton” is Greek for “the hidden one” and “neon” is Greek for “new”.

21 Porcelain : CHINA (SEA)

Although there is no “China Sea” per se, the term “China Seas” is used collectively to describe several marginal seas in the Western Pacific that touch on China. The four principal China Seas are:

  • The Bohai Sea
  • The Huanghai Sea
  • The East China Sea
  • The South China Sea

The ceramic known as “porcelain” can be referred to as “china” or “fine china”, as porcelain was developed in China.

23 SS ___, onetime flagship of the White Star Line : ADRIATIC (SEA)

The Adriatic is the sea separating Italy from the Balkans.

27 Philly Ivy : UPENN

The University of Pennsylvania (also “Penn” and “UPenn”) was founded in 1740 by Benjamin Franklin. Penn was the first school in the country to offer both graduate and undergraduate courses. Penn’s sports teams are known as the Quakers, and sometimes the Red & Blue.

30 Kind of salad with tomatoes, eggs, olives and anchovies : NICOISE

A Niçoise salad is known as a “salade Niçoise” in its native France, where it was named for the city of Nice in the south of the country. The original contains no cooked vegetables, but here in North America there are almost always included some boiled potatoes.

34 Second Monopoly avenue : BALTIC (SEA)

The Baltic is a sea in northern Europe that is much less saline than the oceans. The lower amount of salt in the Baltic partially explains why almost half of the sea freezes over during the winter. In fact, the Baltic has been known to completely freeze over several times over the past few centuries.

38 Actress Graff of “Mr. Belvedere” : ILENE

Ilene Graff is an American actress, probably best known for playing Marsha Owens, the wife of George in the TV series “Mr. Belvedere”.

“Mr. Belvedere” originally ran from 1985 to 1990. The show is based on the novel “Belvedere” by Gwen Davenport that was published in 1947. There was also a film called “Sitting Pretty“ released in 1948 that’s based on the same book, and starring Robert Young and Maureen O’Hara.

39 Bearded beast : GNU

The gnu is also known as the wildebeest, and is an antelope native to Africa. “Wildebeest” is a Dutch meaning “wild beast”.

42 Language akin to Thai : LAO

Lao, the language of Laos, does not use spaces between words (or periods!), although this is apparently changing. Spaces are used between sentences and clauses.

44 Hosp. locales : ORS

Surgery (surg.) is usually performed in an operating room (OR).

45 Prince of Narnia : CASPIAN (SEA)

There are seven novels in “The Chronicles of Narnia” children’s fantasy series written by C. S. Lewis:

  • “The Magician’s Nephew”
  • “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe”
  • “The Horse and the Boy”
  • “Prince Caspian”
  • “The Voyage of the Dawn Treader”
  • “The Silver Chair”
  • “The Last Battle”

The Caspian Sea is a landlocked body of water lying between Asia and Europe. By some definitions, the Caspian is the largest lake on the planet. The name “Caspian” comes from the Caspi people who lived to the southwest of the sea in South Caucasus.

47 Art nouveau? : ARE

The new/nouveau of way of saying “thou art” is “you are”.

48 Monsieur, across the Pyrenees : SENOR

The Pyrénées is a mountain range that runs along the border between Spain and France. Nestled between the two countries, high in the mountains, is the lovely country of Andorra, an old haunt of my family during skiing season …

52 Part of a crystal radio kit : DIODE

A diode is a component in a circuit, the most notable characteristic of which is that it will conduct electric current in only one direction. Some of those vacuum tubes we used to see in old radios and television were diodes, but nowadays almost all diodes are semiconductor devices.

A crystal radio is a passive receiver, meaning that it uses the power in the radio signal to produce sound and does not amplify that signal (it has no battery). The crystal in the radio acts as a primitive form of diode. The sound coming out of a crystal set is so low that you can only hear it with headphones.

55 Hugo ___, longtime Supreme Court justice : BLACK (SEA)

Hugo Black was nominated as Associate Justice of the US Supreme Court by President Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1937, after Black had served as a US Senator for Alabama for a decade. He retired from the court in 1971 after 34 years on the bench. Black’s retirement came a few weeks after checking himself into a hospital. He suffered a stroke two days after stepping down from the court and died less than a week later.

The Black Sea is in southeastern Europe just south of Ukraine. In the north of the Black Sea is the Crimean Peninsula.

57 Result of connecting the circled letters in a certain way, in a punny manner of speaking : SEVEN SEAS

The phrase “the seven seas” has been used for centuries by many different peoples. The actual definition of what constitutes the collection of seven has varied depending on the period and the culture. Nowadays we consider the seven largest bodies of water as the seven seas, namely:

  • The North Pacific Ocean
  • The South Pacific Ocean
  • The North Atlantic Ocean
  • The South Atlantic Ocean
  • The Indian Ocean
  • The Southern Ocean
  • The Arctic Ocean

63 Halley’s comet, to William the Conqueror : OMEN

Edmond Halley was an English astronomer who lived at the turn of the 17th and 18th centuries. In 1705 he declared that comet sightings recorded in 1456, 1531, 1607 and 1682 were in fact observations of the same comet returning to fly by Earth at regular intervals. He predicted that this comet would return in 1758, and he was right, and so the comet was named after him: Halley’s Comet. Sadly, Halley didn’t live long enough to see that his prediction came true.

The Norman Conquest of England started in 1066 when William, Duke of Normandy defeated King Harold II of England at the Battle of Hastings. William was crowned King William I of England, and was dubbed William the Conqueror.

64 Poet ___ St. Vincent Millay : EDNA

Edna St. Vincent Millay was an American poet and playwright, and the third woman to receive the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry (in 1923 for “The Ballad of the Harp-Weaver”). Millay was noted not only for her work, but also for the open arrangement that she and her husband had in their marriage. Millay took many lovers, including the poet George Dillon, for whom she wrote a number of sonnets.

65 Suit material for Mr. Toad : TWEED

Tweed is a rough woolen fabric that is very much associated with Scotland in the UK, and with County Donegal in Ireland. The cloth was originally called “tweel”, the Scots word for “twill”. Apparently a London merchant misinterpreted some handwriting in the early 1800s and assumed the fabric was called “tweed”, a reference to the Scottish River Tweed, and the name stuck …

Mr. Toad is one of the main characters in the children’s novel “The Wind in the Willows” by Kenneth Grahame. A. A. Milne (of “Winnie-the-Pooh” fame) wrote several plays based on “The Wind in the Willows”, the first of which is “Toad of Toad Hall”. And, Mr Toad’s Wild Ride was (it’s closed now!) one of the original rides at Disneyland when the park opened in 1955.

Down

2 Hornets are in it, in brief : NBA

The Hornets are the NBA team based in Charlotte, North Carolina. The Hornets were established as an expansion team in Charlotte in 1988, but moved and became the New Orleans Hornets in 2002. The NBA returned to North Carolina in 2004 with the establishment of the Charlotte Bobcats. The New Orleans franchise rebranded itself in 2013, becoming the Pelicans. As a result, the Charlotte Bobcats were able to change their name to the Hornets in 2014.

3 Anthem contraction : O’ER

Here are the words (and punctuation) of the poem “The Star-Spangled Banner” penned by Francis Scott Key in 1814:

O say can you see, by the dawn’s early light,
What so proudly we hail’d at the twilight’s last gleaming,
Whose broad stripes and bright stars through the perilous fight
O’er the ramparts we watch’d were so gallantly streaming?
And the rocket’s red glare, the bomb bursting in air,
Gave proof through the night that our flag was still there,
O say does that star-spangled banner yet wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave?

On the shore dimly seen through the mists of the deep
Where the foe’s haughty host in dread silence reposes,
What is that which the breeze, o’er the towering steep,
As it fitfully blows, half conceals, half discloses?
Now it catches the gleam of the morning’s first beam,
In full glory reflected now shines in the stream,
Tis the star-spangled banner – O long may it wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave!

And where is that band who so vauntingly swore,
That the havoc of war and the battle’s confusion
A home and a Country should leave us no more?
Their blood has wash’d out their foul footstep’s pollution.
No refuge could save the hireling and slave
From the terror of flight or the gloom of the grave,
And the star-spangled banner in triumph doth wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave.

O thus be it ever when freemen shall stand
Between their lov’d home and the war’s desolation!
Blest with vict’ry and peace may the heav’n rescued land
Praise the power that hath made and preserv’d us a nation!
Then conquer we must, when our cause it is just,
And this be our motto – “In God is our trust,”
And the star-spangled banner in triumph shall wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave.

4 Cousins of crepes : BLINI

A blintz (also “blintze”, and “blin”, plural “blini”) is a thin pancake similar to a crêpe, although unlike a crêpe, a blintz may contain yeast.

6 Promoting peace : IRENIC

“Irenic” (also “eirenic”) means peaceful, and comes from the Greek “eirene” meaning “peace”. A lovely word …

7 ___ Tour : PGA

The Professional Golfers’ Association (PGA) was founded in 1916 and today has its headquarters (unsurprisingly) in Florida, where so many golfers live. Back in 1916, the PGA was based in New York City.

11 Moving targets for waves : CAR ANTENNAS

An antenna’s job is to convert electrical power into radio waves, and radio waves into an electrical signal. The first antennas were built by the German physicist Heinrich Hertz in 1888.

12 Third Greek vowel : ETA

Eta is the seventh letter of the Greek alphabet, and is a forerunner of our Latin character “H”. Originally denoting a consonant, eta was used as a long vowel in Ancient Greek.

13 Dover’s home: Abbr. : DEL

The city of Dover is the capital of Delaware, and is the state’s second biggest city (after Wilmington). Dover is named after the town of Dover on the south coast of England, and was given that name by William Penn. The English Dover lies in the county of Kent, and the American Dover resides in Kent County.

18 ___ Babies (bygone fad) : BEANIE

There were originally just nine Beanie Babies when Ty Warner introduced the stuffed animal in 1993. In the late nineties the toy became a real fad, largely due to innovative marketing techniques. For example, there was no mass marketing with constant TV ads, and the production volume was limited pushing the line into the realm of collectibles. Beanie Baby models were also “retired” on a regular basis, fueling a “must have” behavior in the market.

23 Moby Dick, for one : ALBINO

An albino is an organism lacking normal pigmentation. The term “albino” comes from “albus”, Latin for “white”.

In Herman Melville’s 1851 novel “Moby-Dick”, the animal named in the title is an albino sperm whale.

26 Arcade fixtures : COIN-OPS

Our word “arcade” comes from the Latin “arcus” meaning “arc”. The first arcades were passages made from a series of arches. This could be an avenue of trees, and eventually any covered avenue. I remember arcades lined with shops and stores when I was growing up on the other side of the Atlantic. Arcades came to be lined with lots of amusements, resulting in amusement arcades and video game arcades.

28 Horseshoe Falls setting : NIAGARA

The Horseshoe Falls is the part of Niagara Falls over which 90% of the Niagara River flows. Also called the Canadian Falls, most of the Horseshoe Falls is located in Ontario, with the remainder in Upstate New York.

31 Hosp. locale : ICU

Many a hospital (hosp.) includes an intensive care unit (ICU).

35 Gunpowder alternative, for short : TNT

“TNT” is an abbreviation for “trinitrotoluene”. Trinitrotoluene was first produced in 1863 by the German chemist Joseph Wilbrand, who developed it for use as a yellow dye. TNT is relatively difficult to detonate so it was on the market as a dye for some years before its more explosive properties were discovered.

Gunpowder is the earliest known explosive chemical. Also called “black powder”, it is a mixture of sulfur, charcoal and saltpeter (i.e. potassium nitrate). The saltpeter is a powerful oxidizing agent, providing the oxygen to burn the sulfur and charcoal, which acts as the fuel in the mixture. Gunpowder was invented by the Chinese in 8th century.

40 Spare part, perhaps : TEN-PIN

In bowling, a spare is recorded on a score sheet with a forward slash mark. A strike is recorded with a large letter X.

42 Rendered pork fat : LARD

Fat, when extracted from the carcass of an animal, is called suet. Untreated suet decomposes at room temperature quite easily so it has to be rendered, purified to make it stable. Rendered fat from pigs is what we call lard. Rendered beef or mutton fat is known as tallow.

51 And the following: Abbr. : ET SEQ

The Latin phrase “et sequens” or “et sequentia” is used in English to mean “and following”, and is abbreviated to “et seq.”

53 Those, in Segovia : ESOS

Segovia is a city and province in Spain that are not too far north of Madrid in the center of the country.

59 Web address ender : EDU

The .edu domain was one of the six original generic top-level domains specified. The complete original list is:

  • .com (commercial enterprise)
  • .net (entity involved in network infrastructure e.g. an ISP)
  • .mil (US military)
  • .org (not-for-profit organization)
  • .gov (US federal government entity)
  • .edu (college-level educational institution)

60 Santa ___ winds : ANA

The Santa Ana winds are the very dry air currents that sweep offshore late in the year in Southern California. Because these air currents are so dry, they are noted for their influence over forest fires in the area, especially in the heat of the fall. The winds arise from a buildup of air pressure in the Great Basin that lies between the Rocky Mountains and the Sierra Nevada. Under the right conditions, that air spills over the peaks of the Sierra Nevada and basically “falls” down the side of the Sierra range, heading for the ocean. As the air falls it becomes drier and heats up so that relative humidity can fall to below 10% by the time it hits the coast.

Complete List of Clues/Answers

Across

1 Kind of wine drinker who might remark “I’m getting hints of unripened banana” : SNOB
5 Tears : RIPS
9 Tore : RACED
14 Biblical shepherd : ABEL
15 Lovefest, literally : ORGY
16 Send to cloud nine : ELATE
17 Like calypso music : CARIBBEAN (SEA)
19 Atoll material : CORAL (SEA)
20 It’s a gas : NEON
21 Porcelain : CHINA (SEA)
23 SS ___, onetime flagship of the White Star Line : ADRIATIC (SEA)
27 Philly Ivy : UPENN
29 Actress Meriwether : LEE
30 Kind of salad with tomatoes, eggs, olives and anchovies : NICOISE
32 It’s often left on the table : TIP
34 Second Monopoly avenue : BALTIC (SEA)
36 “Grody!” : ICK!
37 Put on : WEAR
38 Actress Graff of “Mr. Belvedere” : ILENE
39 Bearded beast : GNU
40 Stain : TINGE
41 Having everything in its proper place : NEAT
42 Language akin to Thai : LAO
43 Spanish queens : REINAS
44 Hosp. locales : ORS
45 Prince of Narnia : CASPIAN (SEA)
47 Art nouveau? : ARE
48 Monsieur, across the Pyrenees : SENOR
50 Criticizes pettily : SNIPES AT
52 Part of a crystal radio kit : DIODE
54 Give off : EMIT
55 Hugo ___, longtime Supreme Court justice : BLACK (SEA)
57 Result of connecting the circled letters in a certain way, in a punny manner of speaking : SEVEN SEAS
62 Woodworker’s shaper : LATHE
63 Halley’s comet, to William the Conqueror : OMEN
64 Poet ___ St. Vincent Millay : EDNA
65 Suit material for Mr. Toad : TWEED
66 Class : SORT
67 Berth place : QUAY

Down

1 Egg pouch : SAC
2 Hornets are in it, in brief : NBA
3 Anthem contraction : O’ER
4 Cousins of crepes : BLINI
5 Stiff and mechanical : ROBOTIC
6 Promoting peace : IRENIC
7 ___ Tour : PGA
8 Adjust to match, informally : SYNC
9 Contents of many an index card : RECIPE
10 Like soliloquy deliverers, typically : ALONE
11 Moving targets for waves : CAR ANTENNAS
12 Third Greek vowel : ETA
13 Dover’s home: Abbr. : DEL
18 ___ Babies (bygone fad) : BEANIE
22 Ear covering : HUSK
23 Moby Dick, for one : ALBINO
24 Some casino personnel : DEALERS
25 Launch time : RELEASE DATE
26 Arcade fixtures : COIN-OPS
28 Horseshoe Falls setting : NIAGARA
31 Hosp. locale : ICU
33 Radio shortcut : PRESET
35 Gunpowder alternative, for short : TNT
37 Super Mario Galaxy console : WII
39 Terrific time, in slang : GAS
40 Spare part, perhaps : TEN-PIN
42 Rendered pork fat : LARD
43 Clothing : RAIMENT
45 Altered dishonestly : COOKED
46 “The nerve!” : I NEVER!
49 Nook : NICHE
51 And the following: Abbr. : ET SEQ
53 Those, in Segovia : ESOS
55 Diner order that often comes with a toothpick : BLT
56 Bar code? : LAW
58 Pop subgenre : EMO
59 Web address ender : EDU
60 Santa ___ winds : ANA
61 Perhaps : SAY