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ACROSS

 1 Assign, if I can, certain fragment’s meaning… (12)

 9 … to mysterious alien: “It could get clipped” (7)

10 Western sidekick keeps gold in northern city (7)

11 Barker and Richards almost hit the big time (4,2)

12 Coping with husband getting older (8)

14 Favorite idiosyncrasy: grass skirt (9)

16 Expert with a diminished third dimension (5)

17 Attractive person heard from RS’s neighbors? (5)

18 Audibly receive a title in the dark (9)

20 Writer to run off with faithful wife (8)

22 Do battle with rioting gang, within the limits of endurance (6)

25 Heading west, it is incumbent on me to contain an oceanological disaster (7)

26 Evil in-house degenerate (7)

27 Public srvant (6,6)

DOWN

 1 Unusual pastime: creating an online guide (4,3)

 2 Ultimately starting to smell like feta (5)

 3 Emphasize it with unnatural zeal around here (in Marseille) (9)

 4 Arrange leis here! (4)

 5 Luring abominable giant outside a piece of land (10)

 6 Brought back a pain in the neck—largely, more or less (5)

 7 Occurrence incorporated one small depression (8)

 8 Neglect to fake the slightest bit of turmoil (6)

13 Alcohol swallowed next to prig—for the most part, that’s the last thing you want (5,5)

15 Curry contains a unit tainted with metal (8)

16 Chap featured in an IRA retrospective in The Nation (9)

17 Admits company tops off (4,2)

19 Novelist misspelled “Deer Sir” (7)

21 Grassland coming up over everything… (5)

23 …beside crazy Anglo (5)

24 Talk with French animal (4)

SOLUTION TO PUZZLE NO. 3305

ACROSS 1 hidden 4 BARB(ADO)S 9 anag. 10 LATTE[r] 11 hidden 12 PER + R + Y COMO 13 anag. 15 SEN + D 17 U + NTO (anag.) 19 PEP + PERM + IN T 22 TOP + DOLL + AR[e] 24 [s]UPPER 25 RAC (rev.) + ED 26 anag. 27 ALFRE[d]’S CO 28 RE-SIN

DOWN 1 “kernel mustered” 2 IN([f]RUI[t])NS 3 anag. 4 BIOSPH (anag.) + ERE 5 alternate letters 6 ALL + EYS (anag.) 7 GO IN -> COME OUT 8 pun 14 anag. 16 2 defs. 18 T[r]OPICAL 20 anag. 21 C + OLDER 23 “lax”