Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27583
Hints and tips by Miffypops
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BD Rating – Difficulty * – Enjoyment ***
Good morning to one and all. A fairy gentle puzzle today although 8d threw me for a while but it did remind me of one of the legendary village characters of the past. I am glad I never met Fatal Moore. 3d reminded me of the years I spent in the midlands working as a freelance Astronaut. I never did get any employment but it was fun telling people that was what I did.
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1a We hear he needs people (7)
MASSEUR: Our first clue today is a homophone (we hear) based upon the word NEEDS. The answer is a noun which rather interestingly has only one definition.
5a Log support to sack scoundrel (7)
FIREDOG: This object which sits on the hearth can be made up from an informal verb meaning to dismiss a person from a job and a noun describing a despicable person
9a Ron, e.g., may be one beyond help (5)
GONER: Let us welcome the first anagram of the day (may be) of RON.E.G.
10a Battle helmet (9)
BALACLAVA: This Crimean War battle was fought on the 25th October 1854. It is also the name of a head covering
11a It will enable the pupil to shine (10)
BRIGHTNESS: If we take the pupil here to be a student the answer is a measure of intelligence. If we assume the pupil is in one’s eye the answer will make it shine. If we get enough checking letters we can solve this on the basis of “if it fits bung it in” We can fret about its relevance to the clue later
12a Unidentified girl accepts ring (4)
ANON: Place the letter that looks like a ring inside a girl’s name to find the abbreviation for a word meaning not identified by name.
14a A dangerous job requires lot of money before final settlement (4,8)
BOMB DISPOSAL: This dangerous job can be found by taking a an informal noun meaning a large sum of money and adding another noun meaning getting rid of something, in this case a debt.
18a People who believe in one should have their heads examined (12)
PHRENOLOGIST: One who believes the size and shape of the cranium will provide an insight into one’s personality. Those who believe in this nonsense should have their bumps felt.
21a Decides to change stop (4)
OPTS: This little word is an anagram (change) of STOP. The answer is not tops, pots, spot or post
22a Cold buffet is a great disappointment (6,4)
BITTER BLOW: The first word in the answer here might be used to describe the weather when it is extremely cold. The second is an extremely obscure definition of buffet and is often followed by the word OUT
25a Get into debts without interest (9)
INCURIOUS: To become subject to something (possibly debt) followed by our usual suspect for debts will together give a word meaning not eager to know.
26a A bit like audible tranquillity (5)
PIECE: A part of something provided by a homophone (sounds like) of a word meaning tranquillity.
27a The people who got cross during WW2 (7)
MALTESE: These islanders were awarded the George Cross by King George VI for their heroism during World War two
28a Teams of seven put out by the Spanish (7)
ELEVENS: Take an anagram (put out) of the word SEVEN and place it after the Spanish word for the.
1d African politician set upon Lincoln (6)
MUGABE: A vile African can be found by appending President Lincoln’s shortened forename to a verb meaning to attack and rob someone in a public place.
2d Sombre at first and dark, but not in shadow (6)
SUNLIT: Take the first letter of S(ombre) and add it to an adjective meaning dark or not provided with lighting.
3d Like an astronaut returning — or failing to get lift-off? (5-5)
EARTH BOUND: This is what astronauts are when they are on their way home from space. It is also what those of us who never will be astronauts are permanently.
4d Bird to take illegally home (5)
ROBIN: This pretty little garden visitor can be found be adding our usual crosswordland two letter word for at home after a three letter word meaning to steal. (Cue cute picture opportunity)
5d Much activity that could make up for an empty roundabout (4,5)
FULL SWING: This clever little clue refers to a saying that alludes to children’s playground equipment. What we lose on the roundabouts we gain on the ******.
6d People in competition (4)
RACE: A double definition. Need I say more?
7d A doctor might mix a gin in medicine (8)
DIAGNOSE: I feel this clue read a little clumsily but it is easily solvable as an anagram (Mix) of A GIN placed inside (in) a measure of medicine.
8d Lots of flukes which prevent the balloon going up (8)
GRAPNELS: These small anchors with several flukes might be used to hold a balloon fast to the earth. The last time these were used in Long Itchington was to drag the body of Fatal Moore out of the canal lock. Did he fall in whilst drunk or was he pushed? We will never know.
13d Sign for a missing letter (10)
APOSTROPHE: A punctuation mark denoting a missing letter.
15d Indian food with extra port in America (9)
BALTIMORE: Take the name of a dish served in Indian restaurants and add a word for extra to find the largest city in the state of Maryland USA.
16d Metaphor is mixed but its content is pithy (8)
APHORISM: Hidden (its content) inside the clue
17d In some danger of finding fault (8)
CRITICAL: A double definition. The first often used to describe a persons condition in hospital.
19d Maintain there’s some body in the beer (6)
ALLEGE: Place a part of the human body inside a word for beer.
20d They have news or distribute it (6)
OWNERS: Those who possess made up of an anagram (distribute) of NEWS OR
23d Head of state moves to centre, showing discrimination (5)
TASTE: Move the initial (head) letter of the word state into the middle of the same word to find another word meaning discrimination
24d Payment including king’s ransom (4)
FREE: To liberate. Place R(ex) for king inside a payment for services.
Thanks to Rufus for the challenge. Thanks to Ronnie lane’s Slim Chance for the music and thanks in advance to all who comment.
The Quick Crossword pun: fission+chips=fish’n’chips