Across

1 Introduction to Homer, or superb Roman poet (6)

4 A crooner, fellow from an Oxfordshire town (8)

9 Irritable old servants (6)

10 Awfully foul brew could make one flounce (8)

12 Precise, short theatre cleaner (8,6)

14 Itinerant Romanians in an Italian-speaking country (3,6)

16 Card (king) Welshman rejected (5)

17 A bye, perhaps, in over (5)

19 Accept compassion is to be encouraged (4,5)

21 Two pianists, drunk (6,3,5)

24 Free wood used to make a stall (8)

25 Guide by hand (6)

26 Anxiety shown by South American writers at closing of bookstore (8)

27 Small number on team backing inventor (6)

Down

1 Relative in his flares, bullied around start of term (4-6)

2 Right above pirate ship (5)

3 Company car is damaged making for a Mediterranean island (7)

5 OU sportsman keeping a woman of intelligence (12)

6 Beat writer, at first, with a club (7)

7 During an illness, almost over, trouble a spiritual leader (5,4)

8 Pond creature young toad initially turns into (4)

11 Class points out what a theatre may put on (7,5)

13 Running on tenth lap in old Olympic event (10)

15 Hitchcock film noir – too darned American (9)

18 A grant secured by the sportsman? (7)

20 Rope with which Henry gets cart hauled up (7)

22 Problems housing 50 in wretched dwellings (5)

23 Additional matter written about learner driver (4)

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The Hindu Crossword No. 2618January 22, 2011