DT 25990 – Review – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 25990 – Review

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 25990 – Review

A full analysis by Peter Biddlecombe

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BD Rating – Difficulty ** Enjoyment ***

A mostly easy puzzle, helped by straightforward clues to 15-letter answers. Only delay was in NW corner, where 11, 4, 2, 8 were the last few answers. A pretty good puzzle this – only a couple of weak CDs, and pretty solid surface meanings – only 13’s “axe a version” seemed really silly to me, and about half were as good as you could hope for – 8, 15 and 18 for example.

The charity bike ride which should have been happening on the day this appears has been postponed in the hope of getting two dry days in a row next week, riding on the second after the muddy sections of towpath have dried out on the first.

8 Do more exercise when unable to get off at night (8 )
RESTLESS = “rest less” = do more exercise. Initially distracted by looking for words starting OUT- or OVER-, having guessed that “do more exercise” was the def.
9 In there Lois expected another lady to appear (6)
ELOISE – hidden word – the best known Eloise is probably Héloïse, half of a famous pair of lovers.
10 River flowing to and fro (3)
EXE – palindromic river
11 Spellbind across awkward situation (8 )
TRANS=across,FIX=awkward situation
12 Physicist to land awkwardly (6)
DALTON = anag. of “to land”. John Dalton was a scientist who is probably best remembered for early ideas about atoms, but also worked on gas pressures, colour blindness and the weather
13 Axe a version or an amendment for medical condition (8,7)
ANOREXIA NERVOSA = anag. of “Axe a version or an”
15 A cat in any analysis (7)
18 Stupid nit, not being polite, thrust in (7)
INTRUDE – anag. of nit, + RUDE
21 Not showing concern when needing a financial percentage (7,8 )
LACKING INTEREST – LACKING=needing,INTEREST=financial concern. At least some of “when needing a” must count as surface padding.
24 Leave pointer holding record (6)
DEPART – crossword cliché E.P.=record, in DART=pointer – which as far as I can tell only works in the same way as banker=river – the -er suffix indicates “something that has”. Real-world examples are four-poster and double-decker
25 Trader’s French sea song (8 )
MERCHANT – MER=French sea,CHANT=song
26 I take this in France to be hard water (3)
ICE = I,CE=”this in France”.
27 Notedly smooth (6)
LEGATO – which means “smooth(ly)” in music
28 Hank’s oar operating old boat (5,3)
NOAH’S ARK = anag. of “Hank’s oar”
1 No time uncharged particle is nerve-cell (6)
2 Beat one reserve in part, one making amends (6)
ATONER – hidden in “beAT ONE Reserve”
3 Test of one’s ego? (4-11)
SELF-EXAMINATION – cryptic def.
4 One type of selection is neither male nor female (7)
ASEXUAL = without apparent sex organs. – charde of A=one,SEXUAL=type of selection
5 Badger with argument propelled by sewer (6,3,6)
NEEDLE AND THREAD – badger=NEEDLE=annoy,AND=with,ARGUMENT=thread, “propelled by sewer” = definition by way of description
6 Lottery prize that is a turn-on! (8 )
7 Edward held his wife and embraced (8 )
ESPOUSED – SPOUSE=wife in ED=Edward
14 Eggs from Vouvray oddly left out (3)
OVA – from vOuVrAy – plural of ovum=egg
16 Spruced-up new journalist had taken food inside (8 )
NEATENED – EATEN inside N=new,ED=editor=journalist
17 Remove an Indian perhaps (8 )
TAKEAWAY – 2 defs, one for “take away”
19 America’s eastern purpose (3)
USE – U.S.=America,E=eastern – the ‘s is short for “has” here
20 Colour of farm-workers’ tunics initially (7)
PIGMENT = colour – PIG MEN = farm-workers,T=tunics initially. Reggie Perrin had a brief spell as a pig man between the fake suicide and reappearing as “Martin Wellbourne”.
22 Has her material to use again (6)
REHASH = anag. of “has her”. “material” is one of those anagram indicators which some crossword editors have permitted and solvers can only identify by hardened experience. As far as I can tell there is quite simply no logical reason why “material” should indicate an anagram. The Times puzzle used to allow “characters” to be used in a similar nonsensical way but now seems to have ditched it.
23 Tanner boring several (6)
SUNDRY=several=various – SUN=tanner (because it tans you, on the days when you get to see it), DRY = boring.

1 comment on “DT 25990 – Review

  1. Material crops up again as an anagram indicator in DT 25994, along with two other dubious examples ~ “for control” and “match”.

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