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DT 27596

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27596

Hints and tips by Gazza

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment **

It’s another glorious day in North Devon and once more on Tuesday we have a perfectly adequate puzzle but not much in the way of smiles or penny-drop moments. Do let us know what you thought of it and how you got on.

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

1a Cared madly about a place of amusement (6)
ARCADE – an anagram (madly) of CARED goes round A.

4a Slow progress by son — untidy writing results (6)
SCRAWL – slow progress, such as that of a vehicle in heavy traffic, is preceded by S(on).

8a Speak about a king, leader of Abyssinians for so long (8)
SAYONARA – lots of little bits have to be stitched together here – a verb to speak or give voice, a preposition meaning about, A from the clue, the single-character abbreviation for king and the leading letter of Abyssinians. The setter is trying to make you think of Haile Selassie.

ARVE Error: need id and provider

10a Entirely at home, small child given love (2,4)
IN TOTO – a charade of an adverb meaning at home, a small child and the letter that resembles zero (love in tennis scoring).

11a Persistent pain? One must ring hospital (4)
ACHE – the playing card with a single spot contains (must ring) H(ospital).

12a Flush, getting Oscar for one? Correct (2,3,5)
ON THE MONEY – start with a phrase meaning flush or well provided with cash then replace the Roman numeral for one with the letter that Oscar is used for in the Nato Phonetic Alphabet. What we end up with is a North American slang expression meaning correct or spot-on.

13a Kowtow, as the novice violinist might? (3,3,6)
BOW AND SCRAPE – double definition, the first meaning to ingratiate oneself in a sycophantic manner.

16a Dread  detention (12)
APPREHENSION – another double definition. The detention could be in a police cell.

20a Happen to finish first, as opposed to second (4,2,4)
COME TO PASS – a phrase (4,3) meaning to finish first, in a league table for example, is followed by AS (from the clue) and S(econd).

21a Run over a pack animal (4)
WOLF – reverse (over) a verb to run (like a river).

22a Trim  conifer (6)
SPRUCE – double definition, the first meaning trim or neat.

23a High-up therefore losing head crossing pit (8)
EMINENCE – this high-up is a distinguished person, especially one in the Roman Catholic church. An adverb meaning therefore without its leading H (losing head) goes round a pit.

24a Small number endeavour to engage a public official (6)
NOTARY – the abbreviation for number is followed by a verb to endeavour containing (to engage) A.

25a Rise to the surface  clearly ahead (4,2)
WELL UP – double definition, the first a verbal phrase meaning to rise to the surface which could apply to water, oil or tears.

Down Clues

1d An oil carrier reportedly held in place (2,6)
AT ANCHOR – reportedly is signalling a homophone.

2d Job centre — husband has to go in (5)
CHORE – a word meaning centre with H(usband) inserted.

3d Servant turned up on date bringing rock (7)
DIAMOND – reverse (turned up, in a down clue) a female servant and add ON (from the clue) and D(ate). Rock is a slang term for the answer.

5d That man put in care, possibly a monster (7)
CHIMERA – a male pronoun (that man) gets put inside an anagram (possibly) of CARE.

6d Writer shares out bubbly (9)
AUTHORESS – an anagram (bubbly) of SHARES OUT.

7d Modern type of coffee, right? (6)
LATTER – I remember a time when the only options for a coffee were ‘black’ or ‘white’ – these days you need a translator when going into Starbucks. A type of coffee is followed by R(ight).

9d Diplomatic bag? (7-4)
ATTACHÉ-CASE – I’m not keen on this clue. I think it’s just meant to be a cryptic definition of the sort of bag a specific type of diplomat might carry.

14d Consequently, atlas user misled (2,1,6)
AS A RESULT – an anagram (misled) of ATLAS USER.

15d Takes in better paper (8)
FOOLSCAP – a charade of a verb meaning takes in or hoodwinks and a verb to better or outdo.

17d Hebridean island almost rounded by fellow explorer (7)
PIONEER – a Hebridean island without its final A (almost) goes inside (rounded by) a fellow or someone of equal rank.

18d Forming a unit — see unit formed (2,5)
EN SUITE – an anagram (formed) of SEE UNIT.

19d Speak in a soft murmur holding up new voucher (6)
COUPON – a verb to speak in a soft murmur or sound like a dove contains (holding) UP. At the end we have to add N(ew).

21d Disc wife put on list (5)
WHEEL – a disc or circular object comes from W(ife) followed by (put on, in a down clue) a verb to list or lean.

The clue I liked best was 20a. Which one(s) appealed to you?

If you’ve always fought shy of trying the Toughie because you thought it was beyond you then today would be a good day to have a go – today’s is very gentle.

Today’s Quickie Pun: FEINT + HART = FAINT HEART

50 comments on “DT 27596

  1. First today on my screen ! top half * time bottom half *** time,so have to agree with Gazza ** overall and a **/*** for entertainment. Puzzled a bit over 12a until the Oscar revelation and 20a;no real outstanding clues-was 8a a Marlon Brando film?

  2. Thanks to Mr Ron and to Gazza for the review and hints. A very good puzzle that made laugh. Some great clues. Was beaten by 8a, I could only think of ta ta at the end, but that was wrong. Would never have thought of the answer. Was 2*/3* for me.

  3. Got stuck on 12a, as I’m not familiar with that phrase . . . Still so much to learn! Thank you setter, and Gazza.

  4. An easy one for me today – and I am even almost done with the Toughie too – that must be a first! Usually end up being a few stages closer to being bald when I tackle that.

    My favourite was 16a.


  5. 1*/2.5* for me today. I found this very straightforward but reasonably enjoyable. No stand-out favourite.

    Many thanks to Mr. Ron and to Gazza.

  6. **/*** for me. I didn’t find anything particularly taxing. 8 and 20a being the more enjoyable clues. I came a little unstuck with 7d, just couldn’t see it quickly, despite arguing with a new ridiculous coffee table machine all morning. And am afraid to say I still use my trusty HB pencil for anagrams….can’t do without it Miffypops ;-) Thank you to the setter and Gazza for the explantions.

  7. I think I’ll say 2* plus a bit for difficulty and 3* for enjoyment.
    The plus a bit was because of 12a which I’ve never heard of and I got into all kinds of trouble with that one, right down to deciding that my 3d was wrong.
    For some reason I completely missed the reversal in 21d and spent a long time trying to work it out. Very silly, oh dear!!
    13a took a little while – I thought of ‘playing second fiddle’ which it clearly wasn’t but by then ‘fiddle’ was firmly in my head as the last word.
    I liked 4 and 13a and 15d.
    With thanks to the setter and to gazza.
    Another lovely day in Oxford too – I think the Toughie and the garden can take it in turns to have my attention.

  8. Plain-sailing so managed to finish this before leaving for airport. IMHO not really any clues to write home about. 12a a bit convoluted and an expression I had not heard of – best I could come up with before checking hints (thanks Gazza) was on the ropes. Thank you Mr. Ron.

  9. Fairly straightforward with no real problem moments for once. 8a was my favourite. Thanks to the setter and Gazza.

  10. No problems at all today and no great favourites although 1D did make me chuckle.

    Just a thought, are we allowed to use the word 6D any more? I thought all people who write books are now referred to as authors, just as all people in films and plays are now (apparently) actors.

  11. No problems today, apart from 8a. We both swore it must be a word we had never heard of. Of course, when we resorted to our little helper, it was obvious!

  12. I also completely missed the reversal in 21a, and the parsing for 20a (thanks gazza for the enlightenment) – still completed well before the school run. Last one in was 12a, with a _o_e_ this took me ages, and of course I was trying to change the wrong “o”. I liked “see unit formed”, almost has the makings of a clue by itself. I liked 11a too.

    The toughie was *far* more enjoyable, without being any harder.

    Many thanks setter and gazza

  13. ‘Perfectly adequate’ seems like a perfectly adequate description to me so I won’t try to add anything!

  14. Easily done and very pleasant it was too. Quite a few “if it fits bung it in moments” which did not let me down today. 8ac held out for a while but hauled itself from my brains memory base. I remember a cartoon mouse signing off with it way back in the sixties. Pleasant lunch at The Boatyard by the river in Bridgnorth. Have fun folks and throw those pencils

    1. Throw away those pencils? Never…heartbreaking thought. I have a fine collection acquired from various engineers I know, my daughters pencil case and from my partners teaching days. A necessity for Mephisto (still not completed this week) and the Toughie, very enjoyable today. School run time in sunny N.Yorks. :-)

  15. Bit of a slow start today but soon got going apace. Needed a couple of hints just to check. No favourite. My rating is 2.5/3 Thanks to Gazza for the review.

    1. English has always absorbed foreign words and phrases – I bet that around 1100 AD the native Brits were complaining about the number of French words in use. So at what stage do such words stop being foreign and become English? Or do you think that words such as assassin, fiasco, kindergarten and safari should be banned from crosswords?

      1. I say ban the lot and revert to pure Old English … hmmm, wonder how far crossworders would get with that!

    2. Michael, that’s an extremely narrow-minded point of view.

      I wonder how big The Big Red Book would be if all the words with foreign origins were to be deleted.

  16. */*** for me today. 8a took a little while to go in, in spite of the checking letters, otherwise no problems. I liked 13a. Memories!
    Thanks to Mr Ron and Gazza

  17. Quick solve today!

    I echo Michael’s remarks above – Why can’t setters stick to the English language? Are they professing erudition?

    I am fortunately polyglot in several tongues but I feel that English is enough for most crossword people.

  18. Found this to be be a very disagreeable 3/4 for difficulty and a 1 for enjoyment.
    Thx to Gazza for the much needed hints

  19. I did struggle with this one a bit but had to reference a number of clues with the hints. Many thanks for that Gazza and also thanks for the memory of The King, (not that one) what a wonderful voice he had

  20. Like Beaver, I found the top half easy peasy and really struggled with the bottom half. In fact, I didn’t get several and the ones I did get, I didn’t know why. I had to look up the answer to five clues, I think my worst record. Oh, dear!
    Thanks to the setter and to Gazza for rescuing me from total despair! Fave was 8a, with 12a as runner up.

  21. I quite enjoyed that ,but came unstuck on 12a as I had the wrong third word until I got 8d and realised it was wrong then couldn’t think what the phrase was so thanks for the hints gazza. I was also held up by 8a but Mr. A figured that one out for me. Thanks to Setter.

  22. A **/*** for me. 8a eluded me until the hints and not helped by sloppy spelling in3d doh! 1d brought a chuckle. Got 12a but couldn’t explain it until I got to Gazza’s hints for which much thanks.

  23. Sorry to go against what seems to be the general flow, but I rather enjoyed this! My only disappointment was with 11a – I thought I’d been so clever with “OUCH” (Ring, and UCH). Broke my heart to have to scribble it out.

  24. Thank you setter for a puzzle which I enjoyed. Solved sitting in the sunshine at Chanonry Point waiting for the dolphins – Which never came ! Thanks Gazza for your review and hints which I needed to check a few answers.

  25. Strange experience this afternoon. I was sat outside the bar having a small beer and a look at this crossie when some grey stuff started to obscure the sun! Minutes later there were drops of water (yes, water) falling from the sky!!! I know that you’ll think I’m barking and it’s hard to believe but it’s true – it was actually wet water and it was falling from the sky in big drops! What happening. Is it armageddon? How does it get up there in the first place? Fortunately it stopped after about 15 mins and the grey stuff went away http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yahoo.gif

    Nice puzzle so thanks to setter but not as exciting as the weather, water from the sky?

      1. Rain? Yes, you may be right. It actually that rings a bell but it’s a long time ago. Think it happened here about 9 months ago but with my short-term memory who knows? The cats were certainly confused and when I came home I found one sat in the middle of a puddle – there again, she is “puddled”!!

    1. I know exactly what you mean. I feel the same in the winter here, then when the spring/summer come and we get deluges, I feel like going out and standing in the rain as if it is cleansing the earth! I love the rain, and getting no rain for months is so depressing, trying to keep the garden alive with a hose.

    2. You are Blessed. We are 4 months into the rainy season and hardly enough to top up a small glass of the brown liquid.

      Today’s (Tuesday) whilst not great was more fun tonight than tomorrow’s (Wednesday) very mechanical offering.

  26. The first suggestion that was proffered for 9d by one of us was EMBASSY-WIFE. It was a good thing that checking letters quickly dispelled the possibility as it might have provoked an international incident. It all went together smoothly with lots of smiles along the way.
    Thanks Mr Ron and Gazza.

  27. I did fairly well until getting stuck on 8a and 16d. I did the latter unaided (then wondered why i’d struggled) but 8a was a new word to me. It did not help that I was sure it would end in “tata”.
    Thanks to setter and Gazza.

  28. 2*/3* by my reckoning, and 8a my favourite (fortunately l spotted it quite soon once the crosses were in place). Thanks to Mr Ron, and to Gazza.

  29. Had to work a bit on this one, which is good. 8a and 2d were my last ones in. I inexplicably wanted to put Maharaja for 8a, which made 2d unsolvable. Thankfully I came to my senses, but this hold-up put me into 3* time – so 3*/3* for me. Thanks to setter and Gaza for pointing out why 21a was what it was, even though it couldn’t have been anything else

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