DT 27642 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 27642

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27642

A full review by gnomethang

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BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ***

This puzzle was published on Saturday, 8th November 2014

Morning All! I only solved this last night but was very glad I did as I found it enjoyable and of a fair degree of difficulty

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1a           Field a defender primarily to eliminate top football team (4,6)
REAL MADRID – A charade of REALM (field) then A from the clue followed by D ( the primary letter in D(efender). Finally add RID (eliminate). Top charade in my book!.

6a           Little woman to take gamble with husband (4)
BETH – One of Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women and a crossword chestnut. BET (a gamble) then H for Husband. Good surface reading.

10a         Channel flowing over a gold coin once (5)
DUCAT – A DUCT or channel surrounding (over) A from the clue.

11a         Canal worker receiving benefit including one engaged by King George (9)
GONDOLIER – Tricky to parse but place ON DOLE (receiving benefits) with I for One inserted and then place all that inside G R for George Rex (or King George) – G (ON DOL(I)E) R

12a         Disease caught by artist drawing in crater (7)
CHOLERA – C for Caught and RA for a Royal Academician (or artist) containing (or drawing in) a HOLE or crater. My initial solving notes suggested CALDERA as well which just goes to show….

13a         Place away from it all, to be in France surrounded by desert (7)
RETREAT – Place ETRE ( the French verb for ‘to Be’) inside the verb RAT (to desert).

14a         Worker calling round with agitated gesture (4-8)
HAND-WRINGING – My last in and I don’t know why. HAND for worker and RINGING for calling. The instruction says to place this around (round) W for With. A very cool clue to parse.

18a         Spend childhood accommodating grandparent’s first whim (7,5)
PASSING FANCY – Another finely built clue with a good, clear surface reading. PASS for spend (e.g. Time) then INFANCY (childhood) with the first letter of G(randad)

21a         Like some poems of Lamb about, say, cold (7)
ELEGIAC – Charles Lamb the poet wrote ‘The Essays of Elia’ (no me neither!). Place ELIA around/about E.G. (say) and then add the C for Cold. I can’t see enough in the Charles Lamb canon to see that this in an &Lit (all-in-one clue) but if they dealt with the cold it would be so. This was my last in even though I know the word!.

23a         One among poultry list including duck (7)
ROOSTER – O for duck (0,O – zero in Cricket scoring) inside a ROSTER (a schedule of jobs and people)

24a         Ted in Eton suffering schoolboy punishment (9)
DETENTION – A nice easy anagram of TED IN ETON (indicated by suffering).

25a         Bar in the Flamingo Tavern (5)
INGOT – A gold bar hidden in (just in here) the last two words.

26a         Drop charge (4)
DASH – A small DROP of Lemonade or mixer in a drink and also to run fast. Double definition.

27a         American road not willing to go round river (10)
INTERSTATE – To not have a will/final testimony (not willing) is to be INTESTATE. Make that word go around R for River.


1d           Modify wording of communist decree (6)
REDACT – Split as (3,3) and this reads as a RED (communist) ACT (decree).

2d           Branch orchidist’s cut at both ends that’s planted in the bed? (6)
ANCHOR – That’ll be the sea bed!. A hidden word in the first two words (if you cut off both ends).

3d           His team manic at training — they work out (14)
MATHEMATICIANS – An anagram (training) of HIS TEAM MANIC AT.

4d           Venetian ruler got a rise hoarding diamonds with ruthless attitude (3-3-3)
DOG-EAT-DOG – Start with a DOGE (a Venitian magistrate/ruler) then reverse GOT A around D for Diamonds.

5d           Archery shot a bad one missing first place (5)
INNER – Remove the first letter from (s)INNER – a bad person.

7d           Single brief medical upset at centre of large-scale outbreak (8)
EPIDEMIC – I (single) and the shortened form (brief) of MED[ical] reversed (upset) EPIC or large-scale

8d           Historic buildings, etc — one in Russia loses millions (8)
HERITAGE – An historic building in Russia is an HER(m)ITAGE. Lose the M for Millions.

9d           What’s served after Chinese meal — confounded nieces took four (7,7)
FORTUNE COOKIES – An anagram (confounded) of NIECES TOOK FOUR. Nice surface reading!.

15d         Make new plans to bring up stove (9)
REARRANGE – A charade of REAR (bring up children) and RANGE or stove.

16d         Brilliant to splash out on papers, quids in (8)
SPLENDID – SPEND (to splash out) and ID (papers) with L for Librum/pound/quid inside

17d         A cry for help about ultimate in dangerous material (8)
ASBESTOS – Take A SOS (a cry for help) and place it around the BEST (ultimate e.g. last word).

19d         Greek character taking time to make mark (6)
STIGMA – An insertion of T for Time inside SIGMA, a Greek letter.

20d         Show embarrassment as legal document served on ambassador (6)
WRITHE – A WRIT (legal document) followed by HE, an abbreviation for His Excellency which is the term of address for an ambassador.

22d         Gormless Scottish mountain dog (5)
CAIRN – Take the CAIRNGORM mountains and simply remove the GORM to get the terrier.

Thanks to the setter for the puzzle, I’ll see you all the week after next.