Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 25984 – Hints
Selected hints by Big Dave
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BD Rating – Difficulty ** – Enjoyment ***
This has been a particularly good week, and it does seem that many of the setters are raising their game. I hope that is in part due to the feedback that they have received from this blog. While I would expect that some notice is taken of the opinions of the person writing the individual review, it is your comments that have the biggest impact, so keep them rolling in. Everyone concerned, whether thay be bloggers or setters, is interested in what you have to say.
Now to today’s puzzle. A improvement on last Saturday, but while the inclusion of two well-known places, and names from art and literature were absolutely fine, I was disappointed by the girl’s name at 26 across. I do wish that these prize puzzles were a bit harder, but I’ve gone over that ground before. I was sent a copy of last Saturday’s prize puzzle from The Independent, and it was a breath of fresh air!
As is usual for the weekend prize crosswords, I will select a few of the better clues and provide hints for them. Peter Biddlecombe’s full review of this puzzle will be published at 12.00 on Thursday, 23rd July.
1a Ostentatious in a smock? (11)
… by wearing too many clothes!
11a Be at home after short break for painter (7)
This famous painter starts with a short word for a time away from work
26a Lady accountant, about 50, soldiers on (5)
This lady comes from a Chartered Accountant who is around 50 (in Roman numerals) and is being followed by the soldiers of the Royal Artillery
27a Usherette is a headliner (7,4)
A double definition where the first part is a cryptic description of an usherette and the second part is the female lead in a film or play
2d Reluctant to lose a few lines (5)
Drop the leading A from a synonym for reluctant, to get a few lines of a poem
12d Fine shot? (7,4)
This all-in-one clue is a charade of a fine and a shot at goal
13d Shakespearean, despite real trouble, set out (7)
A character from Hamlet is created by combining an anagram of REAL with one of SET
17d Soothing oil said to come from castle (8)
Read this as “soothing oil” followed by “said, or spoken” to give a Scottish castle, with the rest as padding
19d ‘Felix!’ (7)
Someone once asked me if it was possible to have a one word cryptic clue – well here it is!
24d Lamb, priest starting academy (4)
Here Lamb is cleverly positioned as the first word in the clue to disguise the fact that it should be capitalised anyway – if you’ve seen clues like this before then fine, otherwise look up a pen name used by Charles Lamb
This one really wasn’t too hard, but if you need help then ask – you never know!