DT 27360

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27360

Hints and tips by Deep Threat

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ***

Good morning from South Staffs on an overcast morning, as England yet again fail to bowl out the Australians.

I solved this crossword late last night after a long day, which may account for me taking just into *** time. Although there are no obscure words, I found it took a little while to get a foothold. Thanks to Giovanni for the challenge.

In the hints below, the definitions are underlined.

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.  You can also add your assessment by selecting from one to five stars at the bottom of the post.

Across

1a           Former copper taken in hand about caress and let off (10)
{ EXCULPATED } A charade of a prefix used for former, the chemical symbol for copper, and a word for ‘taken in hand’ wrapped around a gentle touch.

6a           New introduction for Christmas book in church (4)
{ JOEL } Replace the initial N of a word for Christmas with another letter to get an Old Testament book of prophecy (or an American musician).

9a           Boast of very small relation (5)
{ VAUNT } An abbreviation (small) of Very followed by a female relative.

10a         Supply second part of Bible only, being frugal (9)
{ PROVIDENT } A verb meaning to supply followed by the initials of the second part of the Bible.

12a         Represented clients — artist and orchestral players (13)
{ CLARINETTISTS } Anagram (represented) of CLIENTS ARTIST.

14a         Syrupy stuff fool fed to little animals (8)
{ MOLASSES } A fool inside the little creatures who make mounds of earth on your lawn if you’re unlucky.

15a         Army officer sending out fifty in groups (6)
{ GENERA } Remove the Roman numeral for 50 from a senior army officer, to get taxonomic groups.

17a         Stuff transferred quietly in what could be a loud environment (6)
{ UPLOAD } The musical symbol for ‘quietly’ inside an anagram (could be) of A LOUD.

19a         In time rodents wandering round will be cut down severely (8)
{ DECIMATE } Small furry cheese-eating rodents are reversed (wandering round) inside a statement of time.

21a         Retreat gets demeaning somehow (13)
{ DISENGAGEMENT } Anagram (somehow) of GETS DEMEANING.

24a         Bring back restriction, say (9)
{ REINSTATE } Split (4,5) this could be a restriction used on a horse, followed by a verb meaning ‘say’.

25a         Confession of trader and model (5)
{ IDEAL } What the trader might say he does (1,4).

26a         Approves of old-fashioned  excavations (4)
{ DIGS } Double definition: an out-of-date slang expression for ‘approves of’; and the sort of excavations that archaeologists undertake.

27a         Irritates, having got roguish without any necessity (10)
{ NEEDLESSLY } A verb meaning irritates followed by an adjective for roguishly.

Down

1d           Feeling of discontent when messenger drops round (4)
{ ENVY } Remove the round letter from a messenger or ambassador.

2d           A Parisian about to get into twist in legislative body (7)
{ COUNCIL } Put the French for ‘a’ and one of the Latin abbreviations for ‘about’ inside a twist of rope or wire.

3d           Shy man’s talent surprisingly discovered in northern resort (6,2,5)
{ LYTHAM ST ANNES } Anagram (surprisingly) of SHY MAN’S TALENT, giving a Lancashire resort on the Fylde coast.

4d           A beloved, it’s said, must be informed (8)
{ APPRISED } A (from the clue) followed by a homophone (it’s said) of a word meaning beloved or valued.

5d           All right in confinement, the first mum to bring forth (5)
{ EVOKE } A two-letter informal word for ‘all right’ inside the Biblical first woman (and first mother).

7d           Superintend as a diocesan bishop? (7)
{ OVERSEE } Split (4,3) this describes the relationship of a bishop to his diocese.

8d           Luxury-lover who is relaxed, or else taut possibly? (5-5)
{ LOTUS-EATER } Anagram (possibly) of OR ELSE TAUT.

11d         Like some tobacco policy expected soon? (2,3,8)
{ IN THE PIPELINE } Where you might find some tobacco, followed by an expression of policy.

13d         Society decayed and harboured bad emotions (10)
{ SMOULDERED } An abbreviation for Society followed by a word meaning decayed.

16d         Style of cleric always involved in split (8)
{ REVEREND } The style or form of address of a cleric is made up of a word for always inside a word for split or tear apart.

18d         Enduring pain south of US city (7)
{ LASTING } The usual West Coast US city followed by the pain you get from a nettle.

20d         Are holy folk embracing court performer? (7)
{ ACTRESS } ARE (from the clue) and two instances of an abbreviation of a title indicating a holy person, wrapped around an abbreviation for court, giving a performer like, for example, Julie Walters.

22d         Quickly use up some of the capacity (5)
{ APACE } Hidden (some of) in reverse (up) in the clue.

23d         Manoeuvre to work at steadily — nothing in it (4)
{ PLOY } The letter that looks like a zero inside a verb meaning to work at steadily (as in ‘to — one’s trade’).


The Quick Crossword pun { MOANER }{ LEASER } = { MONA LISA }

77 Comments

  1. Miffypops
    Posted December 13, 2013 at 11:07 am | Permalink

    Reference 6ac Coal Foal Goal Boil Coil Foil Soil Toil Doll Loll Moll Poll Roll Toll Cool Fool Pool Tool Wool Foul Soul Bowl Cowl Fowl Howl Jowl (Yowl) all fit the checkers as does NOEL which is at least Christmassy. The answer eluded me. Well done Deep Threat for solving it and also The Don for a great clue which had me beaten fair and square. Great Friday fare as usual. More kitchen demolition for me. Perhaps Kath can tell me how I am going to tell Saint Sharon that she will be without water in the upstairs kitchen until after Christmas.

    • spindrift
      Posted December 13, 2013 at 12:20 pm | Permalink

      Good Luck Old Boy! See you on the other side if we’re spared.

    • crypticsue
      Posted December 13, 2013 at 12:31 pm | Permalink

      At the same time as you tell her you are taking her away for a lovely relaxing holiday somewhere nice and sunny, where she doesn’t have to do a thing apart from apply sunscreen, reach for a drink, while reading a good book.

    • Kath
      Posted December 13, 2013 at 12:38 pm | Permalink

      I wouldn’t, if I were you! I think that might just push even the saintlest of saints right over the edge! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_negative.gif

    • Graham
      Posted December 13, 2013 at 1:06 pm | Permalink

      Look on the bright side no washing up to do for a couple of weeks!http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yahoo.gif

      • Miffypops
        Posted December 13, 2013 at 1:17 pm | Permalink

        Washing up?

        • spindrift
          Posted December 13, 2013 at 2:00 pm | Permalink

          It’s that thing women do in the corner of the kitchen, you know that magic hole where you put your cup and plate then come back in half an hour and it’s disappeared back into the cupboard. No, I don’t know how it works either – it’s bit like that dyson thingie that lives under the stairs.

          (Lights blue touch paper & steps well back….)

          • Miffypops
            Posted December 13, 2013 at 2:21 pm | Permalink

            I have a severe phobia of all things to do with the removal of carpet dust be they Hoover, Electrolux or Dyson to the point that i will immediately leave any premise where one is on show. I think it links to my fear of large spiders that I imagine live inside them after being sucked up. The noises they make are pretty awful too. Best left alone I think. Good news on the water front …….. The electric to the kitchen has gone off to keep it company. saint sharon is due back from her mothers and shopping any moment now.

  2. Sweet William
    Posted December 13, 2013 at 11:08 am | Permalink

    Thank you DG, an enjoyable puzzle in the mid range of difficulty. There didn’t seem to be the compulsory Friday impossible word today ! Thanks DT for the review, hints and photos.

  3. Jezza
    Posted December 13, 2013 at 11:19 am | Permalink

    I thought this was slightly more challenging today, with a few that required some thought. I did enjoy it, so many thanks to Giovanni, and to Deep Threat for the review. 3*/4* for me.

    The toughie today was a quicker solve for me than this one.

  4. Michael
    Posted December 13, 2013 at 11:19 am | Permalink

    Lots of anagrams 12a, 21a, 3d & 8d gave a very good start.

    I must admit I put ‘noel’ into 6a and didn’t understand it – I wouldn’t gave got the real answer in a month of sundays – thanks very much for that!

    Miserable and wet in Herts this morning, golf has been abandoned for the day – I wonder if there’s a good old film on the gogglebox!

    • mary
      Posted December 13, 2013 at 11:52 am | Permalink

      Miserable and wet here too Michael http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_sad.gif

  5. Rabbit Dave
    Posted December 13, 2013 at 11:29 am | Permalink

    I thought this was an excellent crossword. My rating is 4*/3*.

    As with other bloggers, I couldn’t make any sense at all out of 6a and needed the review in order to understand it. I went through a similar process to Miffypops with a similar result!

    Thanks very much to Giovanni and to DT.

  6. Angel
    Posted December 13, 2013 at 11:38 am | Permalink

    Was up until the early hours trying unsuccessfully to finish yesterday’s puzzle but today’s fell more easily into place although I did need Deep Threat (thanks for that) to explain at least four of my answers. Thanks Giovanni for several great clues and much fun. Ridiculous that in these PC days 20d is almost obsolete word! ***/****.

  7. mary
    Posted December 13, 2013 at 11:49 am | Permalink

    Hi DT thanks for review/hints, I didn’t need them but thought I was going to, like yourself it took me ages to get going on this one, eventually my first in was ‘molasses’ at14a then 13d, even after this a lot of perservation and electronic help was needed to complete it, 12a looks really funny written down with the double ‘t’ ! I thought 6a, my last one in, a bit of a ‘toughie’ even though there were only 4 letters, no favourites again today http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_unsure.gif

  8. Heno
    Posted December 13, 2013 at 11:53 am | Permalink

    Thanks to Giovanni and to Deep Threat for the review and hints. A good puzzle, but not my day today. Could only solve 5 clues before resorting to the hints. Couldn’t get any of the anagrams, missed the hidden word, and couldn’t do the rest. Needed 15 hints to finish. Was 5*/2* for me. Feel like a beginner again. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_negative.gif

    • Steve_the_beard
      Posted December 13, 2013 at 1:55 pm | Permalink

      Chin up! We all have bad days – at least no-one is calling this an easy one :-)

      • Heno
        Posted December 13, 2013 at 3:54 pm | Permalink

        Thanks for the moral support Steve, one of my worst attempts for years. Perhaps I just wasn’t in the mood. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_smile.gif

  9. skempie
    Posted December 13, 2013 at 12:02 pm | Permalink

    Another excellent offering from The Don. I would say that 1A is not an everyday word and can therefore be considered as ‘obscure’. I managed to get 6A reasonably early – probably due to having the Bible rammed down my throat 6 days a week while at school http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_negative.gif I really enjoyed 21A

  10. Graham
    Posted December 13, 2013 at 12:03 pm | Permalink

    My niece ishttp://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_mail.gif a 12A but I never knew it was spelt like that but you live & learn.I must admit to having a few problems with this offering & the old grey cells were working overtime 13D was my standout clue, many thanks to the setter & DT for much needed review.

    • Deep Threat
      Posted December 13, 2013 at 12:49 pm | Permalink

      The BRB gives it as either ‘clarinetist’ or ‘clarinettist’. The single T seems to be more common, if my Google search for an illustration is any guide.

  11. crypticsue
    Posted December 13, 2013 at 12:37 pm | Permalink

    Very user-friendly Giovanni today – thank you to him and DT.

    The toughie didn’t take me much longer than the inside back-pager either.

    Either telegraphenquiries are inundated with requests or they are trying to pretend I don’t exist. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_negative.gif

  12. Brian
    Posted December 13, 2013 at 12:54 pm | Permalink

    Very tough and for me horrible with all those religious references http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_negative.gif
    Still don’t see why SS is a reference to holy folk and 6a left me incandescent with rage.
    Has Giovanni ever produced a crossword without all these interminable religious references? Sorry rant over! Many Thx to DT for explaining many of my answers.

    • Miffypops
      Posted December 13, 2013 at 12:57 pm | Permalink

      You should go round to Kaths who thinks our typically seasonal autumnal weather is in fact wintry. She could use the heat from your “Incandescant Rage” .

      • Brian
        Posted December 13, 2013 at 1:03 pm | Permalink

        So warm in fact that we were in shirt sleeves on the golf course yesterday, didn’t improve my golf much though http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_wink.gif

        • Miffypops
          Posted December 13, 2013 at 2:22 pm | Permalink

          Just been to The Post Office in a t shirt. Definately autumnal

          • spindrift
            Posted December 13, 2013 at 4:00 pm | Permalink

            Just a T shirt? The mind boggles!

            • Miffypops
              Posted December 13, 2013 at 4:48 pm | Permalink

              They are very liberal here in South Warks.

    • Deep Threat
      Posted December 13, 2013 at 1:00 pm | Permalink

      SS is an abbreviation for ‘Saints’.

      • Kath
        Posted December 13, 2013 at 1:01 pm | Permalink

        Sorry DT – you beat me to it.

    • Kath
      Posted December 13, 2013 at 1:01 pm | Permalink

      Calm down! Although the two letter abbreviation is more commonly used, specially in crosswords, ‘S’ is also a recognised abbreviation for Saint.

      • Brian
        Posted December 13, 2013 at 1:07 pm | Permalink

        Where does it say that? Never seen him described as S George!

        • Kath
          Posted December 13, 2013 at 1:09 pm | Permalink

          BRB – not surprisingly it’s under S.

      • mary
        Posted December 13, 2013 at 1:19 pm | Permalink

        SS peter and Paul … Saints Peter and Paul

        • Brian
          Posted December 13, 2013 at 1:35 pm | Permalink

          I thought that was a ship :-)

    • SheilaP
      Posted December 13, 2013 at 2:07 pm | Permalink

      Brian, presumably you’re not celebrating Christmas then?

    • Bluebird
      Posted December 13, 2013 at 3:24 pm | Permalink

      If that poor little clue left you incandescent with rage, what happens when something really bad happens, Brian?

      Do you spontaneously combust?

      We need to get you on the old ACE inhibitors………

    • Droolie
      Posted December 13, 2013 at 11:59 pm | Permalink

      I’m with Brian on this one. I’ve no problem with obscure answers – indeed I like them – as long as you can get there from the wordplay. But 6a goes beyond cryptic and into the arcane. I would have appreciated some clue as to the first letter, other than that it’s not N.

  13. Kath
    Posted December 13, 2013 at 12:57 pm | Permalink

    I thought this was very difficult – nearer 4* for me and 3* or 4* for enjoyment.
    I made a complete pig’s ear of the whole thing to begin with. Oh dear! I’ve now sorted it all out but it took a while – doesn’t really matter as I avoid Friday Toughies like the plague so no second crossword for me today.
    I got tangled up with 1a – copper=policeman=plod so it had to be something to do with exploding didn’t it? No. Eventually got there and really it carried on pretty much like that for the whole crossword – don’t know why – just me.
    Oh, and another big problem was 14a – it had to be what it was but I didn’t see the ‘moles’ I could only see the ‘asses’ but however hard I tried ‘mol’ didn’t seem to be a ‘fool’! I never got there with that one so needed the hint. And I couldn’t do 6a to save my life.
    The three long anagrams took me ages.
    I liked 9a and 3 and 13d. My favourite was 11d.
    With thanks to Giovanni and Deep Threat.

    • andy
      Posted December 13, 2013 at 1:58 pm | Permalink

      Kath the Toughie today is very user friendly, Like Sue and Jezza it took me less time to unpick that This offering. Give it a go :)

      • Kath
        Posted December 13, 2013 at 4:22 pm | Permalink

        Thanks, andy. I might summon the courage to have a little peep at it later on.

  14. Kath
    Posted December 13, 2013 at 1:07 pm | Permalink

    PS And another thing – I wanted to hear Billy Joel but it tells me that I have to install Adobe Flash Player. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_scratch.gif
    I think I’ll wait until husband gets home – I’m too much of a computer twit to mess around in case I do something disastrous – it might ruin the weekend!

    • Even Deeper Threat
      Posted December 13, 2013 at 1:20 pm | Permalink

      Are you on an Android device? Android doesn’t do Flash.

    • mary
      Posted December 13, 2013 at 1:33 pm | Permalink

      Yes these men are easily upset Kath http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_whistle3.gif

      • Kath
        Posted December 13, 2013 at 4:11 pm | Permalink

        http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yes.gif

    • Brian
      Posted December 13, 2013 at 1:39 pm | Permalink

      Still a big problem with Flash Player and tablets. Most sites are moving to HTML5 which is far more compatible. Are you on an iPad or laptop? If the latter, installing Adobe a Flash is very easy and very safe. Here,s the link:
      http://www.adobe.com/uk/products/flashplayer.html
      It’s a great site, there are no Bishops, no Saints, no Prophets, no Churches, Prelates, Vicars, a Curates or other religious impedimenta!

    • Kath
      Posted December 13, 2013 at 4:20 pm | Permalink

      Thanks all – I did tell you that I’m a complete nincompoop about computers – I blame it on having a husband and two daughters who all know exactly what they’re doing which means I’ve not only not had to learn but have also never really had the chance – they’re all very willing to do stuff for me because it’s quicker and easier than teaching me how to do it for myself.
      I don’t know what an android is, and I don’t usually use an iPad (unless we’re away and I use husband’s) and I haven’t got a laptop.

      • Michael
        Posted December 13, 2013 at 7:10 pm | Permalink

        Christmas is coming and an Ipad would make a lovely present – mind they don’t do Flash Players either! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_good.gif

        • skempie
          Posted December 13, 2013 at 8:45 pm | Permalink

          If you can find an app called Puffin, it is supposed to overcome this problem on i-Pad (I have got it, but have never got around to trying it – to hard trying to get i-Pad off Mrs, Skempie). Apparently, it is a browser that has a lot of the flash ojimiflips built in so that you can play videos and u-tube stuff. As I said, I haven’t tried it, but it hasn’t damaged the i-Pad yet as far as I can tell (no bad language coming from the region of the settee)

  15. BigBoab
    Posted December 13, 2013 at 1:31 pm | Permalink

    Thanks to Giovanni and DT for an interesting crossword and an amusing review. The toughie by Firefly today is definitely on the less than difficult list and is worth a go by aspiring toughie solvers.

  16. Beaver
    Posted December 13, 2013 at 1:43 pm | Permalink

    Agree with the rating, was on the wavelength for 6a,assumed the right answer, but didn’t like ‘church’ when to my mind it was ‘bible’, never heard of S for saint either, shouldn’t two be STS ?, apart from ending 16d with T instead of D, making 27a difficult-fine and dandy . Thanks to The Don and DT-shame about the cricket.

    • Physicist
      Posted December 13, 2013 at 3:59 pm | Permalink

      With respect, it’s not whether you have heard of S for saint that matters, it’s whether the compilers of Chamber’s Dictionary have, and they have, and list it and SS for saints as well. I’ve often seen the latter on the name-boards outside churches dedicated to two saints, as in ‘SS Peter and Paul’. The doubling of a single-letter abbreviation to indicate the plural is also seen in ‘pp’ for pages.

      • Venator
        Posted December 13, 2013 at 5:26 pm | Permalink

        It always worries me when people open a reply up with “with respect,” as Physicist did, & then proceed to be less than respectful,almost to the point of being a bit too clever.
        However, thanks for the lesson on the abbreviation for Saints, I must stop looking at pub signs & concentrate more on name boards outside churches.
        Beaver, I ended 16d with a T as well, it held me up for quite some time.
        The rest of the puzzle was ok, nice to learn new words like 1ac, & the two Ts in 12ac.
        Thanks The Don &DT, as for the cricket, our radio & tv have stopped receiving The Ashes commentary, funny that!

  17. Jill B
    Posted December 13, 2013 at 1:57 pm | Permalink

    No real difficulty apart from 6a, where I settled for “noel”, with no good reason! I doubt that I would ever have guessed the right answer. Otherwise it was a good and fun-to-do puzzle. Many thanks all round.

  18. SheilaP
    Posted December 13, 2013 at 2:13 pm | Permalink

    I thought this was an excellent puzzle today, much more straightforward for us then the past two days. We did however get the answer to 6 across wrong having put noël in as it seemed appropriate for the time of year. Well, that’s our excuse anyway. Not very Christmassy weather at the moment, being gloomy & damp, much like the cricket. Thank you setter & DT.

  19. Senf
    Posted December 13, 2013 at 2:14 pm | Permalink

    Only three left at lights out last night, so, for a Friday puzzle, this would make it **/**** for me. The three left were 6a (no surprise there based on all the other comments), 19a, and 11d. I realized what 11d was before my eyes closed, and then had difficulty remembering it this morning. Once I did retrieve the answer from deep storage, 19a went in easily. But, I must thank DT for 6a – that was a complete mystery. And, if Giovanni is checking the star rating above – I gave it 5.

  20. Una
    Posted December 13, 2013 at 2:24 pm | Permalink

    Apart fromm needing 3 hints,22d,16, and 6a, I thought this a very fair puzzle.6d would have been a problem, but I was saved by the anagram solver.Thanks to Giovanni and Deep Threat.

  21. Merusa
    Posted December 13, 2013 at 2:58 pm | Permalink

    Alas, I have to give up, and so far I only have about ten answers! As Brian would say, way beyond my pay scale. I have to go out and will be late back, I’ll have to wait until then to read the hints and find out how thick I am. Thanks to all, anyway, but I concede this one.

    http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_cry.gif

    • NJM
      Posted December 13, 2013 at 4:20 pm | Permalink

      Me too!! Just can’t summon up the interest to keep fighting with this.

  22. Bluebird
    Posted December 13, 2013 at 3:21 pm | Permalink

    I thought half way through I would never finish, then as usual, one or two finally dredged up let the rest through. So a good 3*.

    But I never did get 6a- knew it was probably *oel, but had never heard of that word. But you could call it educational!

    12 and 14a – spelling caused a bit of a delay and finally, I worked out 15a but I still don’t know why it is a plural of genus. My 3 yrs of Latin letting me down? Thought it was the one language you could rely on not to be idiosyncratic. Scholars?

    • Deep Threat
      Posted December 13, 2013 at 3:31 pm | Permalink

      In Latin ‘genus’ is a 3rd declension neuter noun, so ‘genera’ is perfectly regular as the plural form. The third declension always did seem a bit of a rag-bag of variations, but I think that’s mainly because the nominative singular forms are often contracted, so you can’t see the underlying root form of the word (‘gener-‘, in this case)

  23. Collywobbles
    Posted December 13, 2013 at 4:21 pm | Permalink

    3* seemed about right for this one. I did need some of the hints because my consistent level is 2* but improving. So, thanks for the hints Deep Threat and to the Don for a very entertaining puzzle

  24. 2Kiwis
    Posted December 13, 2013 at 5:40 pm | Permalink

    The combined time we spent on today’s two puzzles was what we usually expect to spend on them at this stage of the week. However this one took us as long as a Toughie often does and the Toughie was back-pager time.
    Have a bit of an issue with 3d. The place might be well known in the UK, but much less known in the rest of the world. Considering that these puzzles will be syndicated in newspapers around the world in the next few weeks, it could be considered a somewhat unfair clue for a back-page puzzle. That said, we did enjoy the puzzle and had even managed to avoid the obvious and get the right answer for 6a.
    Thanks Giovanni and DT.

    • skempie
      Posted December 13, 2013 at 8:51 pm | Permalink

      Lytham is just outside the World Famous Blackpool – in fact its quite a pleasant place to visit and get away from B.Pool (which I’m afraid is not on my favourites list). It also has a famous golf course which has hosted the British Open on 4 occasions (the last time in 2012) so it should be reasonably well known by certain members of society outside the UK

    • Expat Chris
      Posted December 13, 2013 at 11:16 pm | Permalink

      If I had my druthers, there would be no proper names of any sort in cryptic crosswords, but there we are. It happens a lot. And Skempie, I wouldn’t agree that Blackpool is world famous! It may be a legend in its own mind, but ask any American their opinion of Blackpool and chances are you’d be met with a blank stare. Same probably goes for a lot of other countries.

      • Sweet William
        Posted December 14, 2013 at 12:14 pm | Permalink

        I am sure that the 2 Kiwis are familiar with “Lytham” as a “golf course”. Their fellow Kiwi Bob Charles won The Open there in 1963. I think that golf would be its main claim to fame rather than a “resort”. I have spent many happy hours searching for balls on the links, and most of them are still there !

    • Una
      Posted December 14, 2013 at 7:55 pm | Permalink

      Is using anagram solvers considered infra-dig?

  25. Expat Chris
    Posted December 13, 2013 at 6:58 pm | Permalink

    Although this was a challenge in places and took me a bit longer than usual, I did finish without hints. I thought it was very good and 6A was super. Many thanks to Giovanni and to DT for the review. Loved the pic of the delightful and talented Julie Walters.

  26. Cornish Pasty
    Posted December 14, 2013 at 12:50 am | Permalink

    Would somebody please email me this crossword, I logged in too late and Saturdays is posted, thanks. Peter

  27. Shahriar Bader
    Posted December 14, 2013 at 10:17 am | Permalink

    Although 12 a could be nothing but, yet I couldn’t confirm this spelling from any source. That is, any source but the best xwd blog on Earth!

    • Posted December 14, 2013 at 12:08 pm | Permalink

      Welcome to the blog Shahriar

      Flattery will get you everywhere!

  28. Catnap
    Posted December 14, 2013 at 4:17 pm | Permalink

    This wasn’t the easiest of puzzles. I did enjoy it, though, giving it ****. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_good.gif My fave clue was 6a, but I also liked 12a, 25a, 4d and 11d. No strange words here, but some interesting ones, like 4d. When spelt with a ‘z’, it has a different meaning and, In earlier centuries, was used in valuations (such as inventories of the goods and chattels of a deceased person). Before spelling was standardised, however, both spellings got used because words were spelt as they were heard. Just imagine trying to do a crossword without standardised spelling!!! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_unsure.gif
    Many thanks, Giovanni. And many thanks, Deep Threat, for excellent hints which I didn’t need but found valuable afterwards for checking that my wordplay was correct.
    http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yahoo.gif

  29. Cornishpasty
    Posted December 15, 2013 at 7:34 pm | Permalink

    I found Saturday’s easy but this one was a tough slog for, only just finished it!