Toughie No 1290 by Dada
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BD Rating - Difficulty *** - Enjoyment **
An unusually lacklustre puzzle by Dada's standards that left me wishing I'd stayed in Africa. Reading this review, you might wish I had too.
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.
8a Englishman abroad sticks around in band (9)
SASSENACH A word for walking sticks, reversed (around) and inserted into a word for a waistband.
10a Proletariat somewhat revolutionary, incensed (5)
IRATE Part of (somewhat) the word PROLETARIAT, put in reverse (revolutionary).
11a Some names are so ambiguous (6-9)
DOUBLE-BARRELLED A word describing a compound surname also means ambiguous or back-handed.
12a Huge success from 8am, perhaps? (7)
MEGAHIT An anagram of (perhaps) EIGHT AM.
13a You should invest a quid, not penny, as capital (7)
YAOUNDE The old plural form of you goes round (should invest) A from the clue and the monetary amount for which quid is slang, after dropping P (not penny).
15a A lying business associate? (8,7)
SLEEPING PARTNER A type of business associate who sounds as though he/she is horizontal.
19a Close around Taurus, not entirely cloudy (7)
NEBULAR An adjective meaning close goes around the animal represented by Taurus minus its last letter (not entirely).
22a Mutt grasps even parts of 'fetch' as 'fetch!' (7)
RECOVER A dog's name goes round (grasps) the even-numbered letters (even parts) of FETCH.
24a Please accept two breeds of setter? (4,2,4,2,3)
LOVE ME LOVE MY DOG A pet-owner's stipulation to a prospective partner, if made by Dada, involves a well-worn pun on the word setter.
26a Red Square leftist leader, lying back (5)
LENIN The square of three plus the first letter (leader) of Leftist, all reversed (lying back), gives the name of a famous Communist (Red). A nice clue because the whole phrase can be read as an alternative definition, referring to his resting place in a mausoleum in Moscow's Red Square. (Thanks to Gazza for pointing out what I had missed.)
27a Only men leading French city in foul state (9)
STAGNANCY A synonym for men-only followed by a French city.
1d Worn tutu -- it's the thread, every one concludes (4)
USED Each last letter of (every one concludes) TUTU ITS THE THREAD.
2d Prime minister outlining Liberal minister's responsibility (6)
HEALTH The surname of a former PM goes round (outlining) Liberal to give a ministerial portfolio.
3d Burma transported brown, Asian fruit (8)
RAMBUTAN An anagram of (transported) BURMA plus a shade of brown.
4d Go empty, eating inedible part of ox is difficult (6)
THORNY The outer letters of (empty) a word for a go or attempt go around (eating) a part of an ox's anatomy that is not eaten.
5d Safety barrier for housing I construct again (4,4)
FIRE DOOR FOR from the clue goes round (housing) I from the clue and a word meaning to make or construct again.
6d Fish both ways in sea (6)
MARLIN The two directions Right and Left inside a poetic word for sea.
7d Something to carry out that may rise (4)
DEED A word for an action or thing carried out that is a palindrome (may rise).
9d Hide small human in children's books (7)
SMUGGLE The abbreviation for Small and the term for an ordinary human being in the Harry Potter series.
12d Builder of a family unit? (5)
MASON In this case, a family consisting of a female parent and a male child.
14d Head off horror howler (5)
ERROR A word for horror minus its first letter (head off).
16d Payment after separation -- intend to keep one pound in twenty-five sterling (8)
PALIMONY A verb meaning to intend goes round (to keep) the letter symbol for a pound sterling, all of which goes inside a slang term for 25 of the same.
17d National sport gets through in jail (8)
PERUVIAN The acronym for a sport plus a synonym of through or by way of, all going inside a shortened US word for jail.
18d Statesman has nothing venerable to be written about (7)
NEVADAN ... someone from a particular US state. A foreign-language word for nothing used in colloquial American English, plus the abbreviation of Venerable, all written in reverse (about).
20d Jersey, perhaps, six in off-white (6)
BOVINE The number six in Roman numerals inside an off-white shade of colour.
21d Enjoy something saucy (6)
RELISH A verb meaning to delight in or enjoy is also a type of condiment.
23d Stick money about me (6)
CEMENT A small unit of currency around ME from the clue.
24d French composer's short respite (4)
LULL If you're stumped for a four-letter word for pause or respite, don't worry: all you need to do is to remove the last letter ('s short) from the surname of an Italian-born French composer, instrumentalist, and dancer (1632-1687).
25d Asian state accommodating unknown artist (4)
GOYA A federal state of an Asian country goes round (accommodating) a symbol for a variable or unknown in algebra.
8a and (once Gazza pointed out the wordplay) 26a were my favourites today.
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