Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27693
Hints and tips by pommers
+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +
BD Rating – Difficulty *** – Enjoyment ****
Hola from the Vega Baja where it’s a beautiful sunny morning but a bit too chilly for blog-writing outside. You all know my track record in spotting setters but, for once, I’m going to stick my head above the parapet and say that this one is a RayT. I know we had one last week but this has all the hallmarks – there’s a little bit of innuendo, no clue more than eight words, a couple of hidden answers (just for Kath), an initial letters clue and Her Majesty makes an appearance. On top of that I’ve just had a peek at the Quickie and all the clues are single words. I rest my case.
RayT or not it’s a bit tricky in places, and I slipped into *** time, but there are enough gimmes and anagrams to get you going. However, I found it very entertaining with a few ‘D’oh!’ moments so I’ll be interested in your views.
As usual the ones I like most are in blue, definitions underlined in the clue and the answers hidden under the click here buttons. 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.
7a Craft with single course facing empty seas (8)
WILINESS: This isn’t a boat but craft as in cunning. It’s a charade of W(ith), I (single), a word meaning course or direction (4) and S(ea)S (empty). I’m always happy when the first across clue goes straight in but today I was not happy.
9a Scoundrel’s hit, getting cane (6)
RATTAN: One of the usual three letter scoundrels followed by a word for to hit.
10a Progress made by the old man’s son (4)
PASS: The old man as in father (don’t forget the S) followed by S(on). Simple but elegant
11a Terrible canteen’s stocking American food (10)
SUSTENANCE: Anagram (terrible) of CANTEENS with US (American) inserted (stocking). Well, if it were stocking American food it would be a terrible canteen
12a Bands making collections for speakers (6)
HORDES: These bands are large groups of people and they sound like (for speakers) collections of stuff that have been squirreled away.
14a Spread some caramel on gateau (8)
ELONGATE: It’s one of the hidden answers. You’ll spot it if you look carefully enough.
15a Upset since originally trapped in fly, perhaps (6)
INSECT: Anagram (upset) of SINCE followed by a T (originally Trapped). I thought it was fair but a bit sneaky putting the wordplay indicators before the fodder. I spent some time trying to put an S (Since originally) into (trapped in) some sort of fly to get a word meaning upset, D’OH!
17a Explosive dissolved before detonator’s top fired (6)
HEATED: Fired or, at least, warmed up. It’s an abbreviation for High Explosive followed by a word for dissolved or corroded and then a D (Detonator’s top).
20a Cut both sides of tree sheltering last animal (8)
TRUNCATE: You need a T and an E (both sides of TreE) and insert (sheltering) and word which can mean to last and an animal much beloved of pommette. Took a while to work out under what circumstances the word means to last but got there in the end.
22a Continental appetiser nibbled at party events initially (6)
CANAPE: First letters (initially) of every other word in the clue.
23a Ran despite boils on foot (10)
PEDESTRIAN: Anagram (boils) of RAN DESPITE. I’m not usually a great fan of anagram clues but the surface of this is just brill.
24a Turn using second gear (4)
SKIT: Turn as in a short turn or act on a stage, usually a satirical one. It’s S(econd) followed by some gear or equipment. Here’s one of these from Monty P.
25a Rows from ship around lake (6)
SERIES: The usual two letter ship around a North American lake.
26a Sailor one predicts sheltering at a distance (8)
SEAFARER: Not AB or TAR this time, the sailor finally gets to be the definition. Take a word for someone who makes predictions and insert (sheltering) a word meaning at a distance. We’ve already had this insertion indicator in 20a.
1d Cook a lot topping Italy’s pasta (8)
RIGATONI: A charade of a word meaning cook, as in cook the books, the A from the clue, a slang term for a lot and I(taly).
2d The man’s small, provoking jeer (4)
HISS: “The man’s” followed by S(mall) gives a sound you make when you jeer at something. Not BOO but another one.
3d Lovers usually embracing, playing (6)
VERSUS: This is the other hidden answer. It’s playing as in playing against.
4d Caesar’s heart found in morgue, horribly macabre (8)
GRUESOME: Take an anagram (horribly) of MORGUE and insert (found in) ES (caESar’s heart)
5d Get up after shattering blows (10)
STRAIGHTEN: Anagram (after . . . blows) of SHATTERING. Novel anagram indicator
6d Charm of master’s bed (6)
MASCOT: A Master of Arts (don’t forget the S again) followed by a baby’s bed. I said there was a little bit of innuendo
8d Is raised by practically strict nun (6)
SISTER: IS reversed (raised in a down clue) followed by a word meaning strict without its last letter (practically).
13d Refuse to leave the house? (10)
DISINHERIT: A cryptic definition of what you would do to refuse to leave someone your house (or anything else for that matter) in your will.
16d Cold rush taking one’s discipline (8)
CHASTISE: Take C(old) followed by a word meaning rush or a hurry and insert (taking) IS (ones).
18d In need, hurried to acquire record by Queen (8)
DEPRIVED: Start with a word which can mean hurried and insert (to acquire) and old type of record and R(egina).
19d Disguises guts, lifting middle (6)
BELIES: A word used to describe the guts or stomachs of heavy beer drinkers with the centre letter missing (lifting middle). I’m trying to lose some of mine at the moment, The trousers have all gone tight since Christmas.
21d Staggered about dinghy’s prow catching fish (6)
REELED: You need an abbreviation for about followed by a D (Dinghy’s prow) and insert (catching) a long thin fish.
22d Container vessel’s docked, and sails (6)
CANVAS: A container where you find baked beans followed by a vessel where you find cut flowers without its last letter (docked) gives you a generic term for the sails on a sailing vessel. Yachtsmen still use this term even though their sails are more likely made of Kevlar.
24d Beneath ocean is large marine creature (4)
SEAL: Put an L(arge) beneath not an ocean but a large expanse of salt water to get a creature that lives in it. I used to see a lot of these around Puffin Island when I sailed out of Conwy but very few puffins, surprisingly, although I believe these are now re-establishing themselves because the rats have been eradicated from the island.
A lot of blue today but on the podium are 23a, 6d and 10a. What floated your boat?
The Quick Crossword pun: whirl+sup+art=worlds apart