Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27768
Hints and tips by Kitty & Miffypops
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BD Rating – Difficulty ** – Enjoyment ****
Greetings from the slightly less Hidden Paw, who I can now reveal was really me, Kitty in disguise! Very many thanks everyone for the warm welcome last week. Your punishment is more of me. I am delighted to be back in the blogging seat again, this time tackling the across clues. My assistant Miffypops will take you through the downs.
I do hope you are having a lovely Easter weekend, however you may be spending it.
We have a fairly typical Monday puzzle from Rufus today, full of his trademark double and cryptic definitions. I found most of it straightforward but got held up in the NW by virtue of putting in the wrong first word for 8d.
The hints and tips below are here to help and guide you. I hope they serve their purpose. Definitions are underlined. If you still need an answer after reading the hint then press click here and the answer will be revealed. If you do not want to see the answer – do not click.
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Across by Kitty
1a Practise how to be a pickpocket (3,4,4,2)
GET ONE’S HAND IN: To solve this, I recommend concentrating on the wordplay, which describes literally what a pickpocket may do. The answer means to become practised in something.
10a Restore two kinds of fabric (7)
REPLACE: The first type of fabric is a corded cloth whose three convenient letters ensures it will be familiar to seasoned crossword solvers. The second is a delicate ornamental fabric which the city of Bruges in Belgium is known for.
11a To enjoy himself Sid’s knocked back wine (7)
DISPORT: SID is reversed (knocked back) and then a fortified wine is added. The answer is a literary term meaning to divert or amuse oneself (himself in Sid’s case).
12a A particular variation of time (4)
ITEM: This particular is an anagram (variation) of the letters in TIME.
13a Travel in colourless form of transport (5)
WAGON: Insert a two letter word for travel into a three letter one meaning lacking colour. Pale rather than white or transparent. Inexplicably, the wheels are made of biscuit and marshmallow coated in chocolate, which made them a popular lunchtime snack when I was growing up.
14a Lisp a salutation to friends (4)
KITH: Take a familiar greeting, then say it with a lisp and spell it accordingly. If you have lithped the right word you should have something which is obsolete except when used in conjunction with another word meaning family or kind.
17a The French cry ‘Attack!’ (4,3)
LASH OUT: Today’s French definite article is the feminine one, and the cry is a loud yell. Place them one after another in the order they appear in the clue.
18a Sleeping fish? (7)
KIPPERS: A cute cryptic definition. The answer is some fish. Also some things which are napping. Spoilt for choice for pictures here.
19a A cider’s mixed in a cocktail (7)
SIDECAR: Cider is not an ingredient in this cocktail, made in fact with cognac, orange liqueur and lemon juice, but it is part of the ingredients for the anagram: the first seven letters in the clue are mixed.
22a Shout out various numbers during course of test (7)
EXCLAIM: Another shout, this time one of surprise, formed by slotting three letters which are also Roman numerals at various points into a four-letter word meaning test. Not oral, the second favourite one.
24a Emperor in knight’s armour (4)
TSAR: This Russian emperor is lurking in the clue.
25a Theatre supporter, a name back stage (5)
ANGEL: An informal word for a financial backer, especially of theatrical ventures, is formed of the A from the clue, N(ame), and then a reversal (back) of part of a journey or sporting event. Also a divine messenger or ministering spirit, or a mortal person with similar qualities. I am often protesting to incredulous ears that I am one.
26a Horse that’s fired with enthusiasm in a Western? (4)
COLT: This young horse is also the name of a handgun favoured in Westerns.
29a Parson crazed with love for a trebly gifted female (7)
SOPRANO: An anagram (crazed) of PARSON and the letter for a tennis score of love together give rise to a female who is gifted – not thrice (necessarily – doubtless more!), but in vocalising in the higher musical registers.
30a Make it a struggle to point a weapon (4,3)
TAKE AIM: Anagram (struggle) of MAKE IT A.
31a A fair exchange in sight? (2,3,3,2,3)
AN EYE FOR AN EYE: Not a pleasant exchange, but one of Biblical retribution. Cryptically defined as a swap of sight organs. I like the use of the phrase in this happy song:
ARVE Error: need id and provider
Downs by Kitty’s assistant, Miffypops, who is wondering how to follow that wondrous blog
2d Talk non-stop (7)
EXPRESS: A double definition. The first being to convey (a thought or feeling) in words or by gestures and conduct. The second being a fast train which travels directly from station to station.
3d Approve of American fashion (4)
OKAY: This four letter American word has only two letters in England and therefore uses less ink in printouts. The English version is greener and will help to make the planets resources more sustainable. OK?
4d Neat rum overcomes member showing refinement (7)
ELEGANT: A mixy up the letters clue with an insertion. A beautifully indicated anagram (rum) of NEAT with a member inserted. Newer solvers need to know that members can be arms or legs. I know not why. So play away sticking an arm here or a leg there until you find a word that means showing refinement
5d Fish and wine served with inclusive supplement (7)
HADDOCK: A German wine needs verb meaning to supplement inserting (inclusive)
6d Dandy heard to grind his teeth (4)
NASH: Golly bongs. The things you need to know or research to blog a puzzle. I wish I had done the across clues today. To grind ones teeth is the easy bit. The dandy or leader of fashion was born on October 18th 1874 which make him the same age as most solvers. His first name was Richard but he was known as Beau.
7d To exalt one so idle is wrong (7)
IDOLISE: I (one) followed by an obvious anagram (wrong) of SO IDLE
8d A job done for nothing? (9,4)
FRUITLESS TASK: A clever all in one clue. The first word is an adjective meaning failing to achieve the desired results; unproductive or useless. Or of an apple, orange or lemon tree producing no apples, oranges or lemons. The second word is a simple synonym for work.
9d Nevertheless simultaneously? (2,3,4,4)
AT THE SAME TIME: A double definition easily worked out from the checkers if you can get them.
15d Bus or train (5)
COACH: Another doubler. A charabanc or to train a sportsman
16d Spot and point to how birds eat corn (5)
SPECK: a point of the compass is followed by a verb which aptly describes the action of a bird eating
20d Departed on vessel, showing no emotion (7)
DEADPAN: An adjective meaning no longer alive is followed by a vessel used for cooking
21d No engaged signal, but put the phone down (4,3)
RING OFF: The sign is one that indicates a girl is engaged to be married. If that is not being worn it is the same as ending a telephone call.
22d One chooses to do one’s duty in a democratic way (7)
ELECTOR: This chooser is a voter in an election. We have an election coming up. It matters not a jot who or what you vote for. You will always end up with a government
23d Loan may get arranged, though it’s irregular (7)
ANOMALY: The words “get arranged” might just indicate that the words LOAN MAY are an anagram.
27d Take it away from work? (4)
EASY: When we are away from work we take it thus. In the absence of any inspiration of how to write up this clue I will say this. The opposite of hard. I did not solve this clue myself and had to ask my fellow reviewer for the answer.
28d Personal cover (4)
SKIN: Your epidermis. The thin layer of tissue forming the natural outer covering of the body of a person or animal.
Many thanks to Kitty for the pictures, the correction of a mistake, the reason another answer was right and the answer to 28d which had me stumped. I suppose I ought to thank her for reviewing the across clues so brilliantly that my down hints have been totally eclipsed. Nice one Kitty.
The Quick Crossword pun: consent+rated=concentrated