Sunday 31 January 2021

Special, Sunday 31 Jan 2021, Amrita

Three answers per commenter till 6 PM (Annotations compulsory) 
Please submit all your answers in one comment.  



The Sunday Crossword No 3135, Sunday 31 Jan 2021

1   Fetch coals, kindling and what to clean up with (4,6) FACE CLOTHS*
6   Bar, one offering pork pie that's been recalled (4) RAIL<= 
9   Spooner's to be bold enough to divulge honest transaction (6,4) SQUARE DEAL (from ~ dare squeal)
10 Block and bar (4) STOP [DD]
12 Island in plaza renovated with evenly built-in stone (5,6) LAPIS LAZULI {LAP{ISL}AZ*}{bUiLt+In}
15 Hard seeing stories' heroes topless, wanting clothing (7) HOODIES {H}{gOODIES}
16 Smoothly operated, not beginning to see bureaucracy (3,4) RED TAPE oPERATED*
17 Farfalle grocer hides quickly (7) ALLEGRO [T]
19 Seen in sonar: 'Whale ... another whale' (7) NARWHAL [T]
20 Make improvements to cello lacking content in performance (11) RECONDITION {RE{CellO}NDITION} 
23 China about to tip over, making loud noise (4) CLAP  {PAL}{C}<= (Cockney rhyming slang China plate = Mate = PAL)
24 Not changing oil, I'm not coming home for starters, having broken down (10) MONOLITHIC {OIL+IM+NOT+Co...g+Home}*
25 What makes breeze breathe? (4) LISP [CD]/Definition by example 
26 Sportspeople fight in front of nightspot (6,4) ROWING CLUB {ROWING}{CLUB}

1   Not eating quickly (4) FAST [DD]
2   Every now and then, coloured part of puzzle (4) CLUE CoLoUrEd
3   Grins, having coal and gin prepared for festive event (5,7) CAROL SINGING {GRINS+COAL+GIN}*
4   Everyman put in dictionary: 'pu's a Greek character' (7) OEDIPUS {OED}{I}{PUS} 
5    Animal's eaten acre, made to go on run, sounding less healthy (7) HOARSER {HO{A}RSE}{R}
7   A renowned tennis hero; universally respected American sportsman; his excellence spotted early on? (6,4) ARTHUR ASHE Acrostic &lit
8   Crookedly makes cuts, unedifyingly including education (10) LOPSIDEDLY {LOPS}{ID{ED}LY}
11 How bells may be sounded: loudly, expressing distress (4-8) HAND-WRINGING (~ hand ringing)
13 Dramatic recital that almost worked (10) THEATRICAL {RECITAL+THAt}*
14 Old scrawl's deciphered with unparalleled skill (5-5) WORLD-CLASS*
18 Regularly dropping oars, I annoy cox endlessly leading us to river (7) ORINOCO {OaRs+I+aNnOy}{COx}
19 Safari destination's Guyana; I rob ibises' nests (7) NAIROBI [T]
21 Pulse noted as children's author has heart transplant (4) DHAL D(+h)HA(-h)L
22 Ultimately, this taxi's not one loved by unions (4) SCAB {thiS}{CAB}

Reference List
Island = ISL, Hard = H, About = C, Acre = A, Run = R, Education = ED, Heart = H

The Hindu Cryptic on Sunday # 22, Sunday 31 Jan 2021, Incognito

The Hindu Cryptic on Sunday can be accessed at the link given below. The interactive version at the link is free, you just need to sign in using an email ID and password, no subscription is required.

The crossword is not being blogged as the annotations are provided in the interactive version itself which can be seen if you click on 'Show a hint' under the 'reveal' tab on the top.

The same will be posted on every Sunday at 6 AM.


Saturday 30 January 2021

No 13158, Saturday 30 Jan 2021, Incognito


8 Fine gods vegetable (4) OKRA {OK}{RA}
9 Kingdom in Asia Minor developed daily (5) LYDIA {DAILY*}
10 Looks back and forth (4) SEES <=>
11 Salute American uncle going around Los Angeles academy (6) SALAAM {SA{LA}{A}M}
12 Male acting around middle of scene’s attractive (8) MAGNETIC {M}{ACTING*} around{scEne} 'around' playing the role of anagram indicator and c/c indicator?
13 Stone thrown by Scotsman for European national (8) ESTONIAN {STONE*}{IAN}
15 Bird of prey mutilated parrot (6) RAPTOR {PARROT*}
17 Corrupt senators crime? (7) TREASON {SENATOR*}
19 Striking? Can’t! (7) NOTABLE {NOT}{ABLE}
22 Money order by democrats for communication devices (6) MODEMS {MO}{DEMS}
24 Tell, “Close” (8) INTIMATE (DD)
26 Mali goon travels around country (8) MONGOLIA {MALI+GOON*}
28 State path and leave (2,4) GO AWAY {GO A}{WAY}
30 Orderly’s preference in drinking? (4) NEAT (DD)
31 Oliver’s dance? (5) TWIST (DD)
32 Fixed or varying diet? (4) TIED {DIET*}


1 Auks flying into another bird (4) SKUA {AUKS*}

2 A short month in Spanish house for Lothario (8) CASANOVA {CAS{A}{NOV}A}
3 Last minute adjustment avoiding dreadful test for ex-students (6) ALUMNI {LAst MINUte*}
4 First male soldier is stubborn (7) ADAMANT {ADAM}{ANT}
5 Joey’s father, perhaps, folds anorak around girl with love (8) KANGAROO {ANORAK*} around {G}+{O}
6 General’s in grip of snake and snoozing (6) ASLEEP {AS{LEE}P}
7 Moose Miller’s type of house (4) SEMI (T)
14 Automatic control device changes revs with ring (5) SERVO {REVS*}{O}
16 Little bird nesting in yellow letterbox (5) OWLET (T)
18 Old students only note is not in use any more (8) OBSOLETE {OB}{SOLE}{TE}
20 Many rats may be destroyed by these creatures (4,4) ARMY ANTS {MANY+RATS*}
21 Vessel? Can it go to pieces when penetrated by tip of iceberg before end of night? (7) TITANIC {CAN+IT*} around {Iceberg}{nighT}
23 Four score two fours by end of day (6) EIGHTY {EIGHT}{daY}
25 Drunk’s clothes? (6) TIGHTS {TIGHT'S}
27 Egg males to create sign (4) OMEN {O}{MEN}
29 Beatles lose wager... and get drinks! (4) ALES {beAtLES}

Reference List

Fine=Ok, God=Ra, American Uncle=Sam, Los Angeles=LA, Academy=A, Male=M, Scotsman=Ian, Money order=MO, Democrats=Dems, State=Goa
Spanish house=Casa, First Male=Adam, Soldier=Ant, Girl=G, Love=O, General=Lee, Snake=Asp, Ring=O, Old student=OB, Note=Te, Egg=O

Colour/Font Scheme

DefinitionSolutionComponent lettersEmbedded linksTheme word Reference list word, Anagram IndicatorC/C indicatorReversal IndicatorHidden word IndicatorLetter Pick indicatorDeletion IndicatorHomophone IndicatorMovement IndicatorPositional IndicatorSubstitution, IndicatorOpposite indicatorLink/Connector, Extraneous


Friday 29 January 2021

No 13167, Friday 29 Jan 2021, Incognito


All those who are not regular commenters but who are rookie commenters or silent followers of the blog are requested to post answers with annotations in the comments section. In your own interest please avoid looking up the answers from the interactive version. Don't hesitate to post your annotations, in case you make a mistake in the annotation someone will correct it with the right annotation.


Each commenter is requested to post only 5 answers thereby giving others also a chance to participate. Please provide all your answers in one comment.

Regular solvers/Veterans can post 1 answer each, but after 11 AM only

The regular blog will replace the clues at 4 PM.  as soon as soon as the last answer is  in today as there is a special reason.

Thanks for the response, here's the regular blog.

Incognito has taken me back to my days at my Alma Mater, Indian Military Academy (IMA) at Dehradun.

Chetwode Motto
The safety, honour and welfare of your country come first, always and every time.
The honour, welfare and comfort of the men you command come next.
Your own ease, comfort and safety come last, always and every time.
8   Bird swooped down (4) DOVE [DD]
9   Medic spread oil on Indian radish (5) MOOLI {MO}{OIL*}
10 A small part of a male cat (4) ATOM {A}{TOM}
11 Doctor, I rowed for fruitcake (6) WEIRDO*
12 Huge ship’s final voyage for generous charity (8) LARGESSE {LARGE}{SS}{v...gE}
13 Boss has gin cocktail after end of day’s perusing (8) STUDYING {STUD}{daY}{GIN*}
15 Silly! Silly about Dahl’s initial poems (6) IDYLLS {I{Dahl}YLLS*}
17 Senselessness of madness without a hint of sanity (7) INANITY INsANITY
19 West European student’s travel cost benefit (7) WELFARE {W}{E}{L}{FARE}
22 Virginia lout almost rebels initially and displays bravery (6) VALOUR {VA}{LOUt}{Re..l}
24 Two consume cereal in nautical event (4,4) BOAT RACE {B{OAT}RACE}
26 Cadet performed using signs (5,3) ACTED OUT {CADET}* [RA]
28 Blow horn around Oxford University, for starters, and celebrate (6) HONOUR {HON{Ox...d}{Un...y}R*}
30 Fencing equipment held by free people on retirement (4) EPEE [T<=]
31 Last female in a league (5) FINAL {F}{IN}{A}{L}
32 Squash pest on part of staircase (4) STEP*
The Final Step (Antim Pag) at IMA Dehradun

1   Poet’s carrying lecturer's staff (4) POLE {PO{L}E}
2   A hundred went around city (8) DEHRADUN*
3   Clots destroyed mobile (6) EMBOLI*
4   Pass learner, for example, with Eastern educational institution (7) COLLEGE {COL}{L}{EG}{E}
5   Precipitation during plane excursion initially results in headache (8) MIGRAINE {RAIN}<=>{MIG} and {Ex...n}
6   State about iron model’s security (6) SAFETY {SA{FE}{T}Y}
7   Hundreds and thousands of kilogrammes, I hear (4) TONS (~tonnes) (Tons is a river next to IMA)
14 Vehicle found in Washington garage (5) TONGA [T]
16 Cyril’s rewritten song (5) LYRIC*
18 Superior person carrying vase (small) exits from highway (4-4) TURN-OFFS {T{URN}OFF}{S}
20 Company head’s rigidity (8) FIRMNESS {FIRM}{NESS}
21 Lowering a can into crumpled bag (7) ABATING {AB{A}{TIN}G*}
23 Old student saw and followed orders (6) OBEYED {OB}{EYED}
25 Whale swims around island for a short period (6) AWHILE {AWH{I}LE*}
27 Limits clothing accessories, say (4) CAPS [DD]
29 Old city has exceptional ability in the beginning to produce fertiliser (4) UREA {UR}{Ex...l}{Ab...y}

Reference List
Medic = MO, Ship =SS, West = W, European = E, Student = L, Lecturer = L, Learner = L, Eastern = E, Model = T, Small = S, Old Student = OB(Old Boy), Island = I, Old City = UR

Thursday 28 January 2021

No 13156, Thursday 28 Jan 2021, Neyartha

Solution to 20A has been deliberately left unsolved and is to be answered only by a non-regular / novice commenter, with proper annotation. Those who have answered earlier in the week, please give others a chance.

1/27A  Vivid 21D indication from dad returning with fish wrapped in grass to an event mom organised (5-3) RAPID-EYE MOVEMENT {R{PA<=}{IDE}YE}{EVENT+MOM}*
5   Tactless Argentine cowboy gets energy to chase the duck away (6) GAUCHE GAUCH(-0+e)E
9   One raised to surrender? (5,4) WHITE FLAG [CD]
11 Risk hiding in the plain curtains (5) INCUR [T]
12 After initial turmoil, plan to enter the branch gets cut short by the locks cleaner (7) SHAMPOO {M<=>AP} in {SHOOt}
14 Most vulgar neckties are from factories exporting sartorial tools originally (7) N?F?E?T  (Addendum - NAFFEST Acrostic - See comments))
15 Doctors cry on the line in a disjointed manner (12) INCOHERENTLY*
17 Prepares methodically again to frame rules in a different manner (12) REFORMULATES {TO+FRAME+RULES}*
20 Approve the execution of a cleaning step to welcome the revolutionary staff (7) I?D?R?E (Addendum - INDORSE {rIN{ROD<=}SE} - See comments)
22 Discussions with the heads (7) SUMMITS [DD]
23/7D Spleen briefly damaged by a pattern of repeated occurrences after dropping off (5) SLEEP CYCLE {SPLEEn}*{CYCLE}
24 Drop protocol to obtain an analog computer (5,4) SLIDE RULE {SLIDE}{RULE} I wonder if present day Engineers know what thi is.
26 Just short of the donations required to bring in Oscar and Tesla (6) ALMOST {ALM{O}S}{T}
27 See 1A (8)

1   The least trained got the most difficult to obtain wicket for a run (6) RAWEST RA(-r+w)WEST
2   Make it no longer a government concern to force capturing one on a large vessel (9) PRIVATISE  {PR{1}{VAT}ISE}
3   Stain resulting from decay, reportedly (3) DYE (~die)
4   Some hand tools found under the scared birds (13) YELLOWHAMMERS {HAMMERS}<=>{YELLOW}
6   Time to break up corrupted UN? Idi Amin has imprisoned the French leader permanently (2,9) AD INFINITUM {T} in {UN+IDI+AMIN}* over {Fr...h}
7   See 23A (5,5) 
8   Time to include the northbound sailor’s list of lapses (6) ERRATA {ER{RAT<=}A}
10 Commander-in-chief with an orange missile at sea (13) GENERALISSIMO*
13 Icons in a vessel from the south transporting a broken go-cart and a piano (11) PICTOGRAPHS {SHIP<=} over {GOCART}* and {P}
16 Young girl accepting tax cut gets upset by the apathy (9) LASSITUDE {LASSI{DUTy<=}E}
18 Characters from the embassies taping an afternoon nap (6) SIESTA [T]
19 Auditor’s agreement to make progress (6) ASCENT (~assent)
21 In colour, this might be unrealistic (5) DREAM [CD]
25 Animal with an African tribe (3) EWE [DD]

Reference List
Energy = E, Duck = 0, Factory = F, Oscar = O, Tesla = T, Wicket = W, Run = R, Time = T, Piano = P

Wednesday 27 January 2021

No 13155, Wednesday 27 Jan 2021, Arden

Solution to 17D has been deliberately left unsolved and is to be answered only by a non-regular / novice commenter, with proper annotation. Those who have answered earlier in the week, please give others a chance.

1   Animal handler’s cry, circus finally goes for master (6) MAHOUT (-s+ma)MAHOUT
4   Throw in front, one sounded amused (8) CHUCKLED {CHUCK}{LED}
9   Brown will spurn, strain shows up at regular intervals (6) SUNTAN {SpUrN+sTrAiN}
10 Ape on another planet — second to feature in picture (8) MARMOSET {MAR{MO}S}{ET}
12 Releases one during meals... (8) LAUNCHES {L{A}UNCHES}
13 ... far more perhaps, with table emptied (6) REMOTE {MORE*}{TablE}
15 Super human powers to move cavalry on ice (12) CLAIRVOYANCE*
18 Tend to protect Beth and clan, refuse complete freedom (5,7) CARTE BLANCHE {CAR{BETH+CLAN}*E}
21 Questioning a small family group, to start with (6) ASKING {A}{S}{KIN}{Gr..p}
22 Getting rid of lollipops, thrown back in the face (8) DISPOSAL {DI{SOPS<=}AL}
24 Stupid and boring to have doctor and engineer together (8) DUMBBELL {DU{MB}{BE}LL}
25 Frightens spies (6) SPOOKS [DD]
26 John told to dispatch, it’s not settled yet (5,3) LOOSE END {LOO}{(~send)SEEND}
27 Italian city’s lost its soul, it’s sad (6) TRISTE TRIeSTE

1   Simple solution, saving account will lose it (8) MISPLACE {MISPL{AC}E*}
2   Takes some time to cross New Delhi — like the country (8) HONDURAS {HO{ND}UR}{AS}
 Can’t say for sure since entering doubtful, accomplished finally (15) UNASCERTAINABLE {UN{AS}CERTAIN}{ABLE}
5   With Chamomile tea, Carol finally found cure (4) HEAL Tail Acrostic
6   Promotion daily, it’s one way to borrow money (10,5) COMMERCIAL PAPER {COMMERCIAL}{PAPER}
7   Wild lions have big head, that’s capital (6) LISBON {LIS{Big}ON*}
8   Hesitate to leave the girl — take away the child (6) DITHER {DITch}{HER}
11 Sorters work to find nice places (7) RESORTS*
14 Material for a doctor to limit pain, mostly (7) CAMBRIC {C{A}{MB}RICk}
16 Dealt with sacrilegiousnessin league with censors’ tool (8) SCISSORS {SCISSORS+in+league = sacrilegiousness} [CA]
17 Flower without form is considered inferior (8) ?E?L?S?E (Addendum - DECLASSE {DE{CLASS}E})
19 Criminal at the forefront of a political party in India (6) VANDAL {VAN}{DAL}
20 Stance taken — almost similar to unruly mob (6) AKIMBO {AKIn}{MOB*}
23 Way to go from bottom to top in style (4) ELAN (+e)ELAN(-e)

Reference List
Master = MA, Second = MO, Picture = ET, Small = S, Doctor = MB, Engineer = BE, John = LOO, Child = CH. Flower = DEE(River)

Tuesday 26 January 2021

No 13154, Tuesday 26 Jan 2021, Arden


Solution to 9D has been deliberately left unsolved and is to be answered only by a non-regular / novice commenter, with proper annotation. Those who have answered earlier in the week, please give others a chance.

1   Doubts are back, ideas follow (6,8) SECOND THOUGHTS {SECOND}{THOUGHTS}
10 Runs away with the last tender (5) NURSE {RUNS*}{thE}
11 Thousands on the run to get highest bid (5,4) GRAND SLAM {GRANDS}{LAM}
12 Fancy tusker losing heart to girl (7) ELEGANT ELE(-ph+g)GANT
13 Relationship after half an hour with a Shakespearean character (7) HORATIO {RATIO}<=>{HOur}
14 Compound featured in a cowboy movie essentially (5) ESTER wESTERn
16 With less American money invested, you get strength (9) LUSTINESS {L{US}{TIN}ESS}
19 Poetry she used some magical words (3,6) HEY PRESTO*
20 Laud for participating in the next Olympics (5) EXTOL [T]
22 Accommodation by the meadow is extremely sparse (7) LEANEST {LEA}{NEST}
25 Correspondent, he follows directions (7) NEWSMAN {N}{E}{W}{S}{MAN}
27 One following Mira Shah perhaps is a sage (9) MAHARISHI {MIRA+SHAH}*{1}
28 Meal hasn’t started, it’s confidential (5) INNER dINNER
29 Breaking news! Writing in other words is a natural phenomenon! (8,6) NORTHERN LIGHTS {N{O{R}THER}N}{LIGHTS}

2   Zealously created ten layers (9) EARNESTLY*
3   Work time entertainment (5) OPERA {OP}{ERA}
4   One may be also known by another name, not a drug (9) DIGITALIS {DIGIT}{ALIaS} 
5   Warm husband is a moor (5) HEATH {HEAT}{H}
6   Endure abuse, protect tree when attacked (5,4) UNDER FIRE {UNDER{FIR}E*}
7   Fancy hotel for a serf (5) HELOT*
8   Tally day’s order (7) SUMMONS {SUM}{MON'S}
9   Girl hugging her old flame, is it appropriate? (6) ?N?E?E (Addendum - ANNEXE {ANN{EX}E} - See comments)
15 Some elements are in the back with Thorium (4,5) RARE EARTH {R{ARE}EAR}{TH}
17 Bounty will reveal the Reverend’s bird (9) SPOONBILL (~boon spill to spoonbill)
18 It serves ten items with a flourish (9) ESTAMINET {TEN+ITEMS+A}*
19 Layer over 50% of the sporting event — they have a large following (7) HOLYMEN {H{OLYMpics}EN}
21 Ships engine parts (6) LINERS [DD]
23 Hate a scientist? (5) ABHOR {A}{BHOR} The scientist is spelt as BOHR
24 American among others picked up — a stunner (5) TASER {RES{A}T<=}
26 Squeeze, essentially arm in arm (5) WRING {W{aRm}ING}

Reference List
Thousand = GRAND, Girl = G, Money = TIN, News = N, Writing = R, Words = LIGHTS, Work = OP, Husband = H, American = A, Old flame = EX

Monday 25 January 2021

No 13153, Monday 25 Jan 2021, Arden

Solution to 3D has been deliberately left unsolved and is to be answered only by a non-regular / novice commenter, with proper annotation. Those who have answered earlier in the week, please give others a chance.

1   Talk that’s held between both sides and God’s messenger (7) GABRIEL {GAB}{R}{IE}{L}
5   Ex PM, chap’s regularly seen in a Mediterranean resort (7) MAJORCA {MAJOR}{ChAp}
9   Robert covers miles, nevertheless, finally fails (5) BOMBS {BO{M}B}{n...eS}
10 Tom’s riding a horse or some other animal? (9) CATAMOUNT {CAT}{A}{MOUNT}
11 Newspaper and Fashion magazine form a nucleus, perhaps (9) ORGANELLE {ORGAN}{ELLE}
12 Pared stem at the centre of the mountain ridge (5) ARETE {pAREd}{sTEm}
13 Watch parking becoming issue (4) SEEP {SEE}{P}
15 Punishment from Bridge expert (8) SPANKING {SPAN}{KING}
18 It’s small matter to accept some money arbitrarily (2,6) AT RANDOM {AT{RAND}OM}
19 Renounce study by university finally (4) DENY {DEN}{u...tY}
22 Place to have an argument, perhaps (3-2) SET-TO {SET}{TO}
24 Could be roaming with us, but one doesn’t know (9) IGNORAMUS {ROAMING*}{US}
26 Opposed to history before independence, aren’t they appetising? (9) ANTIPASTI {ANTI}{PAST}{I}
27 Turner’s left with two articles (5) LATHE {L}{A}{THE}
28 Finish off anxiety to get some fish (7) POMFRET {POM}{FRET}
29 Intent on picking the odd runner in Asia (7) EARNEST {EA{RuNnEr}ST}

1   It’s huge climb, in Paris it’s good to be a monkey (6) GIBBON {BIG<=}{BON}
2   Probably best guy to cover electromagnetism, you’re welcome! (2,2,5) BE MY GUEST {BEST+GUY}* over {EM}
3   Bard’s bar hopping, gets to Brisbane (5) I?S?N (Addendum - IBSEN {IBSEN+BAR=BRISBANE} [CA] - See comments)
4   Bar is evacuated, after evacuation it’s limited (9) LOCALISED {LOCAL}{IS}{Ev...eD}
5   Thing took the bottom off the mask (5) MATTE MATTEr
6   Preserve in a bottle — too many here (3-6) JAM-PACKED {JAM}{PACKED}
7   We break egg — wake up (5) ROUSE {RO{US}E}
8   One and the same, in the third place is a song (6) ANTHEM {AN}{THE}{saMe}
14 Vegetable said to be very good, but nothing’s visible in this (3-6) PEA-SOUPER {PEA}{SOUPER}(~super)
16 Some are calm and inexpressive like a stone (9) ALMANDINE [T]
17 Refuse a new entry — getting tense within just a short distance (9) NANOMETRE {N{A}{N}O}{ME{T}RE}
20 Bank mark breaks record (6) ESCARP {E{SCAR}P}
21 Rise for a small change (6) ASCENT {A}{S}{CENT}
23 Went to temple carrying an icon (5) TOTEM [T]
24 Place to shoot a small picture (5) INSET {IN SET}
25 King provides rights to protect even bullies (5) RULER {R}{bUlLiEs}{R}

Reference List
Miles = M, Parking = P, Independence = I, Left = L, Finish = POM(See link in main post), Good in French = BON, Electromagnetism = EM, New = N, Tense = T, Record = EP(Extended play), Small = S, Change = CENT, Right = R

Sunday 24 January 2021

Special, Sunday 24 Jan 2021, K Koteswar Rao

Three answers per commenter till 6 PM (Annotations compulsory) 
Please submit all your answers in one comment.  



The Sunday Crossword No 3134, Sunday 24 Jan 2021

1   Stunt-performing actor given key for automotive device (6,7) CRUISE CONTROL {CRUISE}{CONTROL}
8   Endlessly booed scordato member of orchestra (4) OBOE BOOEd*
9   Course sped around with appropriate safeguards (3,7) DUE PROCESS*
10 Composer's name called out (6) HANDEL (~handle)
11 Intoxicated faun to make incursion, being fearless (8) UNAFRAID {FAUN*}{RAID}
12 Doing borders of Hawaii, then either border of Woodstock (9) HANDIWORK {Ha..iI}{Wo...cK}(H and I)(W or K)
14 Eldest of children usually expressed pretentiousness (4) AIRS (~heirs) 
15 Big cheese regularly chills (4) ICES {bIg+ChEeSe}
16 Kerfuffle before token of love offered on vacation lovingly, lovingly (9) ADORINGLY {ADO}{RING}{Lo...lY}
20 Dry in the morning; before start of afternoon, Italian's knocked back liqueur (3,5) TIA MARIA {AIR}{AM}{Af...n}{IT}<=
21 Someone with a lisp's shy, becoming talkative (6) MOUTHY (~mousy)
23 Vet's confused after duck escapes holding underwear (6,4) STRING VEST {VETS}*<=>{SToRING}
24 Singer's keen on retiring (4) DIVA<=
25 Cheered and chased off something from Somerset (7,6) CHEDDAR CHEESE {CHEERED+CHASED}*

1   Primarily 'correspondence': arcane Biblical beliefs; Abrahamic literature absorbed? (7) CABBALA Acrostic &lit
2   Whereby unpleasant burden is exclusing reek, primarily? (1-4) U-BEND BUrDEN* & lit
3   So Dad's starter comes on a salad? Something bad will inevitably occur (4,3) SODS LAW {SO}{Dad}{SLAW}
4   Wildly cheered queer car that's had good and bad times (9,6) CHEQUERED CAREER {CHEERED+QUEER+CAR}*
5   Some forsaken or waylaid in the country (6) NORWAY [T]
6   Going back to find suspicious Puerto Ricans denied tap dancing (9) RECURSION {pUERtO+RICaNS}*
7   Fool with slander, perhaps, about young women (7) LASSIES {L{ASS}IES}
13 'Milk a deer'? That's freakish, surreal (9) DREAMLIKE*
15 Unwise to assemble 3rd, 7th, 9th, 20th, 22nd, 27th & 28th pieces from Dmitri Dmitrievich Shostakovich (7) IDIOTIC {dmItri+DmItrievich+shOsTakovICh}
17 Mum's overcome by strain when game's played again (7) REMATCH {RE{MA}TCH}
18 Corrupt chevalier's heading off, abandoning one French city (2,5) LE HAVRE {cHEVALiER}*
19 Run into tree? Everyman would, becoming unresponsive (6) FRIGID {F{R}IG}{I'D}
22 Fun duet; 'side splitting'? ... a bit much (5) UNDUE {fUN}{DUEt

Reference List
Italian = IT, Run = R