DT 26205

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26205

A full analysis by Big Dave

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BD Rating – Difficulty ** Enjoyment ***

Another of the new, improved Saturday Prize puzzles. Let us know what you think – too easy?, too hard?, like it?, don’t like it?

Across

1a    Short-tempered agent included hot tip (6)
SNAPPY – A word meaning short-tempered is derived by putting SPY (secret agent) around NAP (hot tip, typically from a horse-racing tipster)

4a    Relaxed, not on watch (3,5)
OFF GUARD – a double definition

9a    Discount as leaving new base rate (6)
REBATE – a discount which is an anagram (new) of B(AS)E RATE without the AS (as leaving)

10a    Very sour dithery inspector (8)
SURVEYOR – an anagram (dithery) of VERY SOUR gives an inspector

11a    Bloomer getting prize at dairy show (9)
BUTTERCUP – a flower that is crypticly defined

13a    One in island race, a new giant (5)
TITAN – put I (one) inside the Isle of Man TT race and add A N(ew) to get a giant

14a    From Berne postcard depicting regalia (3,3,7)
ORB AND SCEPTRE – an anagram, very loosely indicated by from, of BERNE POSTCARD gives this Royal Regalia

17a    Near definite spot that’s irrelevant (6,3,4)
BESIDE THE MARK – combine BESIDE (near) with THE MARK (definite spot) to get a phrase that means irrelevant

21a    Bone, first-class piece put back (5)
TIBIA – the shinbone can be formed from AI (first class) BIT (piece) all reversed (put back)

23a    Alsatians savaging attacker (9)
ASSAILANT – an anagram (savaging) of Alsatians gives an attacker – having an anagram indicator that operates on the wrong part of the clue just doesn’t work

24a    Gathering at a church service in German (8)
AMASSING – a gathering that comes from A MASS (a church service) IN G(erman)

25a    This speech is not reported (6)
DIRECT – direct speech is not reported speech

26a    Edward accepting accountant had container for drinks (3,5)
TEA CADDY – put TEDDY (Edward) around (accepting) ACA (Associate Chartered Accountant) gives an airtight container for holding tea – not really a container for drinks, more for the product from which the drinks are made

27a    Guide personnel to river (6)
MENTOR – A more senior or experienced colleague appointed to guide a junior employee is built up from MEN (personnel) with TO and R(iver)

Down

1d    Old scholar found rudimentary dwelling in southeast (6)
SCRIBE – an old scholar is derived by putting a CRIB (rudimentary dwelling) inside SE ( South East)

2d    Bird well below par (9)
ALBATROSS – a score of three strokes less than par on a golf hole

3d    Lead about alternative vegetable for flavouring (3,4)
POT HERB – put Pb (the chemical symbol for lead) around OTHER (alternative) to get a vegetable used for flavouring

5d    After teatime notices the beds (4-7)
FOUR POSTERS – after FOUR (teatime for some) put POSTERS (notices) to get these beds

6d    Donated too much during dance (7)
GAVOTTE – put GAVE (donated) around OTT (over-the-top) to get a dance, somewhat like a country dance – my views on the construct A, B in meaning put B inside A have not changed!

7d    Yeast fermenting still (2,3)
AS YET – an anagram (fermenting) of YEAST gives a phrase meaning still

8d    Mad having called during the action (8)
DERANGED – a word meaning mad comes from RANG (called) inside (during) DEED (action)

12d    Criminal made an effort despite being shackled (11)
CONSTRAINED – a charade of CON (criminal) and STRAINED (made an effort) gives a word meaning shackled

15d    Sit down, assume one’s to have a meal (4,1,4)
TAKE A SEAT – a phrase meaning “sit down” is also what you do before you have a meal [Gazza has pointed out that there is a little more to this than I had realised – it’s a charade of TAKE (assume) A’S (one’s) and EAT (to have a meal)}

16d    Separate summary (8)
ABSTRACT – a double definition

18d    Ease Dad out of lake (4,3)
DEAD SEA – an anagram (out) of EASE DAD gives this large salt lake

19d    Stupid like one over the eight (7)
ASININE – a word meaning stupid is made up from AS (like) I (one) and NINE (over the eight)

20d    Sister going round gallery found old Greek coin (6)
STATER – put SR (sister) around the TATE gallery to get an old Greek coin

22d    Endlessly courageous going over a Spanish Costa (5)
BRAVA – BRAV(E) (courageous) without its last letter (endlessly) and put it over A (as this is a down clue) and you get a Spanish Costa

I don’t want to get too critical of these Saturday puzzles, as they are substantially better than they were a year ago, but there was one particularly poor anagram indicator, “from” in 14 across, and a few weak clues.

One Comment

  1. Digby
    Posted April 8, 2010 at 1:29 pm | Permalink

    Definitely an improvement, but still a bit more to go. No real satsfaction in completing it.