Across

1An arm of the Mediterranean between northwest Italy and Corsica (8,3)
7A triangular sail stretched in front of the foremast in a ship (3)
9Pungent, biting, caustic (5)
10Novel first published in 1847, written under the pen name of Acton Bell (5,4)
11Suburb of Stoke-on-Trent, named after the Classical region, the site of Josiah Wedgwood's residential Hall (7)
12Great ___ , iron steamship designed by Brunel, the largest ship ever built when launched in 1858 (7)
13Geological period between the Cambrian and Silurian eras (10)
15Island in the Inner Hebrides of Scotland, whose largest settlement is Portree (4)
17Alexander ___ , English author who wrote Ode on Solitude when aged twelve (4)
18Garden plant of the buttercup family, with tall showy spikes of blue flowers (10)
21Amelia ___ , the first woman to fly solo non-stop across the Atlantic Ocean (7)
23The coffee bean produced from the shrub Coffea canephora, grown especially in East Africa (7)
24Canadian musician who recorded the 1970 album After the Gold Rush (4,5)
25Mary ___ , historian who wrote the book Laughter in Ancient Rome: On Joking, Tickling, and Cracking Up (5)
26Large horned antelope with a tufted tail, also called the wildebeest (3)
27A white Rhine wine produced near Mainz, Germany (11)

Down

1A cattle-herder or cowboy in the steppes of western Venezuela and eastern Colombia (7)
2Actor who played the title role in the 1990 film Cyrano de Bergerac (6,9)
3Steve ___ , the Sports Personality of the Year in 2000 (8)
4A hurtling mass of snow, with ice and rock, descending a mountainside (9)
5John Millington ___ , Irish writer who wrote the play The Playboy of the Western World, first performed in 1907 (5)
6Italian town where St Francis founded the Franciscan religious order in 1209 (6)
7Striker for Tottenham Hotspur in the 1990s who later managed Germany's national football team (6,9)
8___ Knowles, former member of the girl group Destiny's Child, who married rapper Jay-Z in 2008 (7)
14Plant with thin green edible shoots, whose first pickings are known as sprue (9)
16African country whose largest natural reserve is Hwange National Park (8)
17Obsolete monetary unit of Germany, worth one-hundredth of a mark (7)
19An intricate decorative fret pattern, especially in ancient Greek architecture (7)
20A tropical Indian fig tree with vast rooting branches (6)
22A brownish-grey colour, the French word for 'mole' (5)

Solution


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