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DT 27578

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27578

Hints and tips by Gazza

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ***

Most of this one went in fairly quickly but I was held up by 9d and 15a (which I’d never heard of) so I’ve upped the difficulty level to three stars. Do you think that’s about right or am I way off track? Do let us know how you got on and what you thought.

If you click on any of the areas showing ‘Click here!’ you’ll see the actual answer so try not to do it by accident.

Across Clues

1 A tendency at sea (6)
ADRIFT – A and a tendency or trend.

4a Paper associated with a union? (8)
CONFETTI – cryptic definition. This paper is brightly coloured and is difficult to clear up.

10a Bird causing one to talk on street (9)
STONECHAT – ONE (from the clue) and a verb to talk casually follow (on, in an across clue) the abbreviation for street.

11a Some buying (or selling) an evergreen shrub (5)
GORSE – hidden.

12a Vocalist going about with regular partygoer? (7)
SWINGER – a vocalist containing W(ith).

13a Letters to a celeb, cool and masculine, it’s said (3,4)
FAN MAIL – a charade of a verb to cool and what sounds like masculine.

14a Bar of gold I obtained around noon originally (5)
INGOT – I and a verb meaning obtained containing the original letter of noon.

15a A Jamaican port, or I choose slightly reduced rum (4,4)
OCHO RIOS – this is a port on the northern side of the island where cruise ships often dock. It’s an anagram (rum) of OR I and CHOOS(e) (slightly reduced). Even having worked out the fodder I needed the checking letters before it clicked that the name is the Spanish for eight rivers.

18a Ambassador meeting newly-weds in British isles (8)
HEBRIDES – the abbreviation of an ambassador’s title followed by newly-weds.

20a Operatic heroine common? Not quite (5)
NORMA – the heroine of Bellini’s opera is an adjective meaning common or usual without the final L (not quite).

ARVE Error: need id and provider

23a I am finished with old painting technique (7)
IMPASTO – string together the contracted form of ‘I am’, an adverb meaning finished or over and O(ld).

25a Casual worker, not switched on at first (7)
OFFHAND – a manual worker preceded (at first) by the state a device is in if it’s not switched on.

26a District housing new stadium (5)
ARENA – a district or locality containing (housing) N(ew).

27a Duke, duke wife’s divorced (9)
ELLINGTON – start with the title of the Iron Duke and drop the W (wife’s divorced).

ARVE Error: need id and provider

28a Fail to keep backing during meeting, being without friends? (8)
DESOLATE – reverse a verb meaning to fail to keep and put it inside a meeting, often one of a romantic nature.

29a Unreal shot of the nervous system (6)
NEURAL – an anagram (shot) of UNREAL.

Down Clues

1d Hit man when given cheek at home (8)
ASSASSIN – a charade of a conjunction meaning when, an informal (mainly North American) word for cheek or impudence and an adverb meaning at home.

2d Boarding train, first to leave in middle of night (7)
ROOMING – start with a verb to train or prepare someone and drop its initial letter (first to leave). Then add IN (from the clue) and the middle letter of night.

3d Warplane circling about does for cargo ship (9)
FREIGHTER – a warplane (such as an F-15) contains a preposition meaning about or concerning. ‘Does for’ is just a linking mechanism meaning ‘is sufficient to make’.

5d Stars are so  excellent (3,2,4,5)
OUT OF THIS WORLD – double definition.

6d Cigarette lit for gang leader (5)
FAGIN – an informal word for a cigarette followed by an adverb (applied to a wood fire, for example) meaning ignited.

7d Whirlwind ripped a door half off (7)
TORNADO – bring together a past participle meaning ripped, A (from the clue) and half of the word door.

8d Designs must include large examples (6)
IDEALS – designs or proposals including L(arge).

9d Novelist heading off for estuary cut off in a place full of trees (8,6)
SHERWOOD FOREST – my first thought here was that the definition was novelist – wrong! The novelist (minus his first letter, heading off) is the first word, then we need FOR (from the clue) and the abbreviation (cut off) of estuary. The decapitated novelist wrote a series of books about Berlin which became the inspiration for the musical Cabaret.

16d Protect telephone receiver (4-5)
RING-FENCE – charade of a verb to telephone and a receiver of stolen goods.

17d Principal character in a line (8)
CARDINAL – a dated word for a comical or eccentric character is followed by IN A (from the clue) and L(ine).

19d Speak  fast (7)
EXPRESS – double definition.

21d Race around on hill — that generates energy (7)
REACTOR – an anagram (around) of RACE is followed (on, in a down clue) by a rocky hill.

22d Genius is reportedly in charge (6)
WIZARD – what sounds (reportedly) like ‘is’ goes inside a charge or dependent minor.

24d Southern shopping centre, limited in size (5)
SMALL – S(outhern) followed by a shopping centre.

I liked 1d and 22d best. Let us know what you liked.


59 comments on “DT 27578

  1. Thank you setter, tricky in parts – 15a certainly, but I managed to finish it with a fluke at 9d ! Thanks Gazza for your review and hints which were helpful to check a few wordplays.

  2. I enjoyed this, liking the 27a duke duke clue, I liked the “British Isles” in 18a, I liked “boarding train” in 2d and i loved the simplicity of 16d and 19d. I had never heard of the port either, but wordplay and checked letters afforded a guess. Last entry was 28a – couldn’t rid my mind of “dissolute”, which doesn’t fit at all, but stopped me getting the answer for a while… Many thanks setter and gazza

  3. 10a, 15a and 23a were all new words, so it was one of those puzzles that sped along and then ran into sand. I liked 28a, although not sure why it needed a ?. And 27a.

    1. I seem to recall that 23a has come up several times before, I’m sure the more erudite amongst us will know when http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_bye.gif

        1. (Was trying to get the inline link thingy to work, and now it’s off to be moderated :(. Sorry, and don’t worry about it, moderator, it’s fine after my first edit.)

      1. DT 27370 last time it made an appearance

        25a Sort of paint over in one second (7)
        {IMPASTO} Thickly applied pigment – Follow I (one) with an informal abbreviation for a short period of time, into which has been inserted an adjective meaning gone, ended.

        1. That was the last time it made an appearance on the back page but it appeared in a Toughie (1235) earlier this month:
          Sort of painting I think is about done (7)

  4. Well got it finished but a lot of the wordplay baffled me (12a, 15a, 27a, 2d, 22d) but got the answers from the checking letters, not the right way I know but it gets you there.
    Best clue by a country mile for me was 16d, a real ‘smiler’. ***/***
    Thx to all esp Gazza for explaining all the baffling word plays.

  5. 2.5*/2.5* for another curate’s egg puzzle. I’ve never heard of the opera in 20a but found it via Google, and, like Will, 10a & 15a were new words for me. An ocho is a figure of 8 dance move which I recently learned in the Tango, but I didn’t put two and two together so to speak and hence 15a took me longer than it should have.

    Even though I got the answer for 6d easily enough I couldn’t equate “in” with “lit”, so thanks Gazza for the enlightenment.

    The excellent 18a was my favourite and 27a raised a smile. I am sorry to say that I didn’t like the use of US slang in 1d.

    Many thanks to Mr. Ron and to Gazza.

  6. No hold ups here but I had to check out the port which I had never heard of. Loved 27 across which was the last in. 9d went in easily thanks to parts of the clue but mainly because I had checkers. (If it fits bung it in) I struggled to work out the whys and wherefores of it though. The second word is lurking away hidden in the clue so I spent time trying to see how that worked. 2/3 for me. A nice start to the day. This is the day that you have got. Rejoice and be glad in it. Thanks to Gazza for the blog, especially 9d. and thanks to the setter and thanks to all who comment on this blog and thanks to Big Dave for adding Ancient and /film to my blog yesterday.
    That’s all folks

  7. I agree with 3* and 3*. I’m just beginning to realise that when there aren’t many anagrams it takes me longer to get going and today there were only three.
    It took me quite a while to get started on this one but then got going reasonably well until my last few.
    15a was my last one – never heard of it and, just to complicate things, completely missed the anagram indicator so, yet again, thanks to Mr Google for bailing me out of that one.
    Like RD with 6d I couldn’t quite see lit=in.
    I only knew the 20a operatic heroine because she turns up often enough in crosswords for me to remember her.
    For some unknown reason I got 9d on first read through.
    I had 1d right for the wrong reasons which I’ll keep to myself, I think!
    I liked 18 and 27a and 19d. My favourite was 22d.
    With thanks to Mr Ron and gazza.
    It’s either still raining or raining again – not sure which.

    1. PS – Just had a proper look at the picture for 15a. I’d rather like to go there I think – anyone want to come with me?

        1. I’m with you gazza for 15a! I did get 9d but had never heard of the novelist either http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_unsure.gif I quite enjoyed this one, a two to three star for me today, off for accuppuncture and pottery soon … http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_bye.gif
          As for 6d I remember when we were children the rayburn would be left ‘in’ all night in the winter i.e. – ‘lit’

          1. Yes – us too with the fire being kept in overnight especially the winter of 1962-63 – don’t know why I didn’t think of it.
            Talking of ins and outs – when the Pet Lambs were little if the sun went behind a cloud younger one always used to say that the sun had gone out – quite logical really but it took us ages to convince her that she should say the sun had gone in.

      1. Hmmm. Well, there was a time when it was good for tourists, but less so nowadays, I think!!

      2. OK – Rick and Bluebird don’t want to come – just me, Mary and Poppy so far but time for more to sign up!

      1. Close – the only thing you’ve got wrong is the number of the clue – it was 1d not 15d – but all the same http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/icon_redface.gif and http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/icon_rolleyes.gif and oh dear!!

  8. Took ages to get 22d because I was mad enough to think that 28a started with ‘miss’! And needed help to discover 15a. Thank you setter and Gazza. Tomatoes are loving the rain – Poppy not so much, but sans the lampshade it’s not the problem it would have been as she stared skywards before. Greetings to all.

    1. Nice to ‘see’ you again, Poppy, and Mary of course.
      I assume that Poppy’s eye is on the mend if she’s now without lampshade – what a relief that must be.
      As for tomatoes loving the rain I’m starting to think about teaching our outside ones to swim – greenhouse ones are fine though.

  9. A pleasant puzzle with some good clues. It didn’t feel too difficult (although I wasn’t super-fast, but that’s normal!), but then I did resort to a few hints at the end. Somehow I couldn’t get hugely excited today, but that is probably because it’s a wet and gloomy Tuesday.

    Difficulty: mixed
    Enjoyment: yes

    I’ll join those who went for 22d as favourite. Thanks to the setter and to Gazza for all the good work.

    Going to ban myself from checking in again until this evening, because there are things I should be doing and I’m the world’s worst (or best??) procrastinator. Have fun, all! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_bye.gif

  10. As always what you know is easy and what you don’t is impossible. I have been to 15a so got it in about five seconds from the fodder. Gazza you must have struggled to find that picture – I recall it as a complete dump that mainly exists to part cruise ship passengers from as much of their money as possible in the shortest time.
    I liked the double duke clue which was my last in and the rest fell in well under 2* time so I will bask in smugness for the rest of the day.

    PS 15a also features in the title of ‘From Rochdale to Ocho Rios’ on the classic 1978 10CC album Bloody Tourists – showing my age again!

    1. In third world countries, you stand no chance of enjoying the country to its fullest by hanging around in ports. Visit where real people live!

      1. Couldn’t agree more. It works just as well for the Mediterranean too. Anywhere that cruise liners dock should be given a wide berth (pardon the pun).

  11. A good one today, I think. A couple of new words for me (23a, 15a) – thank goodness for the Internet. I had a ‘doh’ moment with 11a as I failed to see the hidden word. Favourites are 16d and 27a. Thanks to setter for an enjoyable puzzle and to Gazza for the hints.

  12. An excellent means whereby to ignore more dreary rain in W.Sussex. Thank you Mr. Ron and Gazza. ***/****. Kath and Rabbit Dave IMHO you have missed something if you have never heard Maria Callas singing Casta Diva from Bellini’s Norma – sublime. East side went in before west. Struggled with 28a whilst trying to end word with less. Needed help to parse 1d – that kind of cheek never occurred to me! Joint favs (sorry Kath 27a and 16d). http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yes.gif

      1. Gazza, what joy – you have made my day – huge thanks. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_rose.gif (a Rosenkavalier rose for you!)

      2. My wine glass shattered when La Divina hit that very high note!

        Fortunately, my glass was empty!

  13. I agree with *** for difficulty. There were a few that needed quite a bit of chewing over, e.g the 2d and 10a cross.

    I COMPLETELY missed the 11a hidden word….so, although I knew the answer, no clue as to why.

    I liked 4a and 16d.

    My fav was the duke duke clue, which was fabulous.http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_cool.gif

  14. A very nice crossword today with a couple of rather tricky ones, very enjoyable indeed, thanks to the setter and to Gazza for the hints. The Shamus toughie today is of a similar difficulty rating and is well worth a wee go.

  15. Going for a **/*** today, like most 15a was new, reminded me of Bluebottle asking Sea goon what he would like to drink-‘a Southampton’ replied Seagoon, whats that? asked Bluebottle-a large port retorted Seagoon! ,Happy days.

    1. Completed OK and not too long but needed a deal if thought. There were some really good clues (4a,18a and 22d) bt I have never come across the term for 2d and although I solved the anagram for 15a I have never heard of this place. I’d give it 3* all round

  16. More tricky today than yesterday, but we managed to finish it. I’ve never heard of 15a, but we looked it up. Liked 27a and generally enjoyed it very much. Thank you setter and Gazza. Thought Matt’s cartoon in the TG today was funny.

  17. Straightforward solve today!

    Faves : 10a, 15a, 27a, 5d, 6d & 9d.

    For 15a had to consult my large atlas!

  18. I liked today’s puzzle; a nice mixture of clues with some old faves like 1d and 23a and some others which made me think. Sometimes not my strong point admittedly!
    And Brian, I agree; 16d was my favourite too!
    Thanks to Mr Ron and Gazza for the hints. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yes.gif

  19. Bit late on parade today, things to do (again) I’m afraid.

    First the good news (just to cheer people up) – it appears to have stopped raining !!! Still a lot of damp in the air mind, so got my fingers and toeses well crossed.

    Very enjoyable solve today. Like most, I’d not heard of the port in 15A but a quick scan of Jamaica on Goggle maps filled that in, Other than that one, no problems at all today and some nice chuckling on my part. I think the ones I liked have all been mentioned already today, so if they made you laugh, they probably did the same for me. I think that I’m going for 18A as my favourite today as (for some reason) I always refer to the islands in the gay marriage sense.

  20. Thanks to Mr Ron and to Gazza for the review and hints. A most enjoyable puzzle, some easy, but some to make you think. Have never seen 1d clued like this before. Had never heard of the author in 9d, but solved it through the wordplay. Never heard of 15a, but luckily realised it was an anagram. Favourite was 27a. Was 3*/3* for me. Half way through the Toughie at the moment, well worth a go.

  21. Yes, agree it was tricky, and needed the hints in parts. Enjoyable, and liked 1d, 16a, 10a and 9d. Had never heard of 17d in this context. Thanks to setter, and to Gazza.

  22. The same for re 15a. And it certainly does look inviting though I wouldn’t bother spending hours sunbathing anymore. I’d prefer to read in the shade. 26a and 8d also eluded me . Thanks Gazza and setter.

  23. I found this very satisfying, thoroughly enjoyable. As a Jamaican, I had no problem with 15a, only we call it Ochie. Followed M’pops rule for 9d and got it right, but did need hints to know why. Loved 18a, 6d and 22d, but favourite has to be 27a.

    It is so nice to have Mary and Poppy back and to know that little Poppy is doing well. I, too, enjoyed the Bellini aria, a truly lovely piece and the beautiful Callas voice. You done us proud Gazza! Thank you, and also thanks to setter.

  24. No major problem with completing this today without the use of the blog, however I will confess I resorted to the atlas to look at the Jamaican ports. My favourite was 18A but many of the clues deserve a mention in dispatches. My rating is 2.5/3.5 and my other rating is 10 out of 10 for Gazza’s review.

  25. All well today – although I’ve never heard of the port, which meant guessing it at the end. Thanks to setter and Gazza.
    (And I’m getting on quite well with the Shamus Toughie so morale is high today!)

  26. We needed a bit of help from Google for 15a and Mrs B for the bird in 18a which we had not met before (that we can remember). Strangely, we got 9d very early with only one checking letter so this gave us lots of helpful letters. Good fun.
    Thanks Mr Ron and Gazza.

  27. Very enjoyable back page. Didn’t know 10a and thanks to gazza for the help on eight rivers. Me gusta hablar espanol tambien. Guessed 9d as it was logical. We do like Robin hood in France. That’s probably the only forest we have ever heard of. Thanks to gazza again and Mr Ron.

  28. Really enjoyed today, used Google to find 15a and coincidently I had been reading Christopher Isherwood over the weekend so that helped. Loved 5d and for some unknown reason 28a perhaps that’s what I would have been if I had not done so well with the crossword. Slightly better day with sunshine this afternoon but too late to rescue Bank Holiday.

  29. I do hope the crossword editor reads this blog. This setter has ticked all the boxes. Even Brian was only baffled. I think we have seen this setter a few times now. I like him.

    1. I concur! Actually that sounds rather pompous, perhaps I should say “Well said Miffypops!”

  30. Been out of radio contact for a month but back in harness again (sigh). I liked this one very much but my one quibble is calling C Isherwood ‘a novelist’. He was certainly a writer, but I’m struggling to think of a novel. However, quibble aside, 3*/4* for me

  31. Had to Google for the answer to 15a, but otherwise had no problems with what I thought was a good fun puzzle. 27a was my fave, but I also thought 4a, 18a, 20a, 9d and 16d worthy of particular mention.

    Didn’t need your hints Gazza but have thoroughly enjoyed going through them. Loved the clip of 20a!

    Thanks to the setter for the enjoyable Tuesday fare. Thanks to Gazza for the expert review.

    Apologies for the lateness of this.

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