DT 27823 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 27823

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27823

Hints and tips by Gazza

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

This was more of a sprint than a marathon but I enjoyed it and thought it was pretty good for a Tuesday. No pangram, no theme, no Nina – just a straight cryptic crossword. Do let us know how you got on and give us your verdict.

If you click on any of the areas showing ‘Click here!’ you’ll see the actual answer so only do that if you find that my hint is inadequate.

Across Clues

1a Father’s leading wise man’s lobby (7)
PASSAGE – an affectionate word for father and the ‘S precede a wise man.

5a Moves involving kings — and where they might move to? (7)
CASTLES – double definition, the first being special moves in chess involving the king and one of the rooks.

9a Important Wilde character goes round a grave (7)
EARNEST – the adopted name of the male lead in Oscar Wilde’s most well-known play contains A.

ARVE Error: need id and provider

10a Sounds like where campers are concentrated? (7)
INTENSE – an old chestnut – this sounds like where you might find people on a campsite.

11a Broadcast? Shocked about title, oddly (9)
SCATTERED – a past participle meaning shocked or alarmed contains the odd letters of title.

12a Rover’s perhaps going west across Spain, dear? (5)
STEEP – what Rover (or Tiddles, possibly) is an example of, together with the ‘S, get reversed (going west or left, in an across clue) around the IVR code for Spain.

13a Abandon urge to go after diamonds (5)
DITCH – an urge or craving follows the abbreviation for the card suit diamonds.

15a A page — keen — is given the job (9)
APPOINTED – string together A (from the clue), the abbreviation for page and an adjective meaning keen or sharp.

17a Mechanisms in clocks have briefly to divide short periods of time (9)
MOVEMENTS – the contracted form of have (as seen in a phrase such as “you’ve got to be joking”) goes inside (to divide) brief periods of time.

19a Good to cut dreadful song at the end (5)
DIRGE – the abbreviation for good is inserted (to cut) in an adjective meaning dreadful or appalling.

22a Nick Nolte regularly portrays mechanical man (5)
ROBOT – we need to do a bit of lifting and separating on Nick Nolte. Nick is an informal verb to steal and after that we need the even (regularly) letters of Nolte.

23a Going back over last character for Alan Turing to pen (9)
RETURNING – start with a preposition meaning over or concerning then insert (to pen) the last letter of (Ala)N inside Turing.

25a Running after Carol after tea (7)
CHASING – a verb to carol (ignore the false capitalisation) comes after an informal word for tea.

26a Alluring woman with anger — that could give one a pain in the neck (7)
VAMPIRE – charade of a temptress who seduces men and anger or rage.

27a Third in Premiership? United, it’s been revealed (7)
EMERGED – the third letter of Premiership is followed by a verb meaning united or amalgamated.

28a Caught second horse with ends of strong rope? Splendid! (7)
SNAGGED – string together (S)econd, an old horse and the end letters of the last three words in the clue.

Down Clues

1d Ironed clothes  in a hurry (7)
PRESSED – double definition, the second meaning strapped for time.

2d Man‘s small expression of hesitation with very small insect (7)
SERVANT – start with S(mall) and an expression of hesitation and add V(ery) and a small insect (alternatively, this could be a small version of very and an insect).

3d Fresh beer right on time (5)
ALERT – another word for beer and R(ight) come before (on, in a down clue) T(ime).

4d Please, host, provide amusement (9)
ENTERTAIN – triple definition, though there’s not a great deal of difference between the first and third meanings.

5d ‘Boiled rice!’ daughter screamed (5)
CRIED – an anagram (boiled) of RICE followed by D(aughter).

6d Upset, ‘It’s safe,’ I’d answered (9)
SATISFIED – an anagram (upset) of IT’S SAFE I’D.

7d Biggest ten logs chopped up (7)
LONGEST – this is a bit like the proverbial buses – you don’t see an anagram for twenty clues then three come along in quick succession. This is an anagram (chopped up) of TEN LOGS.

8d Walked very softly around horse? On the contrary (7)
STEPPED – on the contrary means that, instead of very softly going around a horse, an old word for a horse goes around the musical abbreviation for very softly or pianissimo.

14d Thread to go under amateur athlete’s vulnerable tendon (9)
HAMSTRING – a thread or twine follows (to go under, in a down clue) an adjective meaning amateur or inexpert (often used of a stage performer).

16d Good things I have in premises (9)
POSITIVES – premises here is a verb meaning puts forward as an argument or proposition. The contracted form of ‘I have’ goes inside it.

17d Getting into three-wheel car I measured up is a marvel (7)
MIRACLE – hidden (getting into) and reversed (up, in a down clue). As has been mentioned before the string of letters to be found are not actually going up, they’re going from right to left because they’re in the clue, but it’s a convention that ‘up’ is allowed because this is a down clue.

18d Shake spoilt child in struggle (7)
VIBRATE – insert a spoilt or badly behaved child in a verb to struggle or compete.

20d Working out — temperature’s boosted — showering (7)
RAINING – start with a present participle meaning working out (in the gym, for example) then take away (boosted) the T(emperature). In North America boost is an informal verb meaning to steal or shoplift.

21d Brain? Mine is on top (7)
EGGHEAD – an informal word for a mine or bomb precedes a verb to top or lead.

23d Outfit I had to make with no bending (5)
RIGID – an outfit or costume is followed by the contracted form of ‘I had’.

24d Alcohol leads to Bill’s awful dance (5)
RUMBA – an alcoholic spirit and the leading letters of two words in the clue.

Top clues for me were 22a and 16d. How about you?

Today’s Quickie Pun: PAR + TEA + PEACE = PARTY PIECE


56 comments on “DT 27823

  1. On the easier side again today. Is it my imagination or have the puzzles been a bit kinder of late? Even the Toughie today is hardly tough.

    Anyway. an enjoyable puzzle indeed. 1*/4*

    Thanks to the setter and Gazza for puzzle and blog.

  2. I raced through the top half of this puzzle but was held up in the lower half with the SW corner being the last to yield. Fairly straightforward and pretty enjoyable solve – really liked 22a too. Thanks to Gazza and Mr Ron **/***

  3. Yes, nice and straightforward, almost a write-in but slowed down in SW. Last one in was 21a as I was convincing myself I had the right word for “mine”. For me, a pronounced T detracts from the homophone in 10a.

    I thought 19a was particularly good (song at the end) and I also liked the imagery of 24d (alcohol leads to Bill’s awful dance).

    Many thanks Setter and Gazza

  4. No real problems or issues & a straightforward solve which makes a change for me,I to liked 22A along with the nicely hidden 17D.Many thanks to the setter & Gazza for his review.http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_good.gif

  5. Totally agree with George.
    Telegraph over for the day and safely confined to the bin.
    Pointed for keen in 15a was new to me.
    Loved 9a: My motto being “quite frankly I don’t give a damn”.
    Thanks to the setter and to Gazza for the review.

  6. For me the top half of this enjoyable puzzle was R&W but the bottom was a bit harder. Overall 1.5*/3*.

    I don’t think 9a works because I’m fairly sure that character’s name in the Oscar Wilde play already includes the “A”.

    Also I’m unsure why “boosted” means “to take away” in 20d.

    Many thanks to Mr. Ron and to Gazza.

    1. The assumed name in the play is Ernest. I think (hope) I’ve explained boosted in the hint.

      1. Thanks Gazza. I did read your review but still didn’t understand 20d having never heard of the slang use of “boost” to mean “steal”. When I finally did what I should have done first and checked my BRB, it specifies US slang. I won’t reiterate my well known thoughts on that provenance!

        1. Having just read Beaver’s comment below I realise that I didn’t read your review for that clue to the very end. Mea culpa.

    2. I didn’t understand ‘boosted ‘ either-should it have read ‘ booted, as things are booted out ie removed?

      1. Just reread Gazza’s explanation for 20d- not impressed with American slang used in a cryptic without some form of ‘usa’ pointer in the surface read. Well that’s my moan over, agree with the **/*** uncomplicated solve and no real favourites.

  7. Today’s mental exercise was all too short-lived but it was fun while it lasted. In spite of having lived in USA for several years I was unaware of the take on boosting in 20d. I suppose 7d does sort of mean biggest. Failed to parse 17d. Thank you Mr. Ron and Gazza. */***. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yes.gif

    1. I’m waiting for Expat Chris to come on and cast doubt on the correctness of Chambers. :D
      So, here’s the definition of boost from Merriam-Webster:
      Full Definition of BOOST
      transitive verb
      : to push or shove up from below
      : increase, raise
      : to promote the cause or interests of : plug
      : to raise the voltage of or across (an electric circuit)
      slang : steal, shoplift

      intransitive verb
      slang : shoplift

      1. In Canada, while not a common meaning of boost – it does mean to steal. I think it may have its origins in boosting a car’s ignition when stealing one.

        It also means to use a set of cables to start a car when the battery is flat – I don’t know if that is used in the UK or not.

              1. I take the booster cable out of the trunk of my car and connect it under the hood! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_wacko.gif

              2. Jump leads here too but I never know where they are when I need them (and I’m not quite sure where to find the battery in my car anyway!) Oh dear!! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_unsure.gif

      2. I’m here. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_yes.gifI don’t always agree with Chambers but in this case it’s correct. It’s a term applied to stealing cars, I believe, as well as shoplifting.

      3. Thanks Gazza. I often regret having thrown out my Merriam Webster dictionary on my return to UK. Now I know I can refer to boost(er) starting as opposed to jump(er) starting my car as well as having it boosted or stolen. We live and learn! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_bye.gif

        1. If you have an iPad or other Apple device you can download the Merriam-Webster dictionary app free which can be useful.

          1. Done – thank you Véronique although in a way I do have some reservation about use of U.S. terminology in our crosswords. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/icon_confused.gif

  8. Still being an idiot today as I thought Tearing would work for 25a… D’oh! Which meant that 17d was my last in and, still qualifying for the corner with a pointy hat having a very large D on it, I hadn’t even noticed the upside downess of it. Bah! Still it was fun to do, so thank you to setter, as well as to the owner of the wondrous black hairy person with four paws, for very clear hints. Much appreciated.

  9. My theory about puzzles being easier the more time you have on your hands was proved yet again with this enjoyable little gem. *\*** for me. Thanks to all concerned. May have to watch or listen to the new look England getting hammered by the Kiwis in Birmingham this afternoon.

  10. The top half was R anad W and the lower half needed more thought. Very pleasant , nonetheless.I think the smooth surfaces helped to keep it fun.
    26a gave me a smile.Thanks Gazza for explaining 22a, I had got it but couldn’t figure out why.
    Thanks to the setter for a lovely little romp.

  11. Yes,pretty straightforward (despite a bit of a hangover following a splendid dinner with wonderful Spanish wines)…..21d was my last in – never heard of this word for bomb or mine…..I also got the answer to 20d without understanding the wordplay, so thanks for the explanation – I shall try to remember this use of boosted for next time!

  12. I agree with 2* and 3*.
    I think I’d have gone for 1* difficulty if I hadn’t totally messed up 11a – I’ll just elaborate on that! My answer was shattered i.e. shocked. Shared=broadcast – well sort of – containing (about) the odd letters of title. I was going to have a good gripe about it all being the wrong way round but, on that happy note, I think I’d better shut up! Oh dear! http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/icon_redface.gif and http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/icon_rolleyes.gif
    I didn’t have any other problems today apart from wondering if a 14d ‘ham’ is just any old amateur rather than specifically an actor.
    22 and 26a and 24d all made me laugh so my favourite is one of those – take your pick!
    With thanks to Mr Ron and to gazza for sorting out my 11a problem.
    Very grey in Oxford with a nippy NE wind – the garden doesn’t like it and I’m not too keen either.

    1. You can certainly be a Radio Ham – that was the name of one of the funniest Hancock programmes.

      1. Oh yes – forgot about the Radio Ham and the Hancock – think I’m a bit of a loser today – will just trot up the garden and do some weeding!

  13. Managed this one pretty well except for the SW corner and 21d…which I was convinced was pithead…..early life in a coal mining district is to blame I suppose.
    Certainly didn’t know that ‘egg’ meant bomb or mine.
    Was also totally unaware that ‘boost’ meant steal…but the answer had to be what it was anyway.
    Needed help with some of the other parsing too.
    26a made me smile.
    Thanks to the setter and to Gazza.

  14. We agree with everybody else, particularly the fact that it was over and done with far too quickly. But as usual we had to consult the ever-reliable Gazza for the parsing of a couple of clues.

    Nevertheless, an enjoyable puzzle from Mr Ron….**/***

  15. Straightforward, as others have said. I didn’t find it particularly enjoyable, though. Thanks, anyway, to the setter and to Gazza for the review…and the mention!

    The Toughie isn’t.

  16. A few weak clues e.g. 23a and 24d I thought, but liked the gentle humour of 26a. Thanks to Gazza and the setter.

  17. Pleasant puzzling, but on the gentle side: 1*/3*. I liked 5 and 26a. Thanks to Mr Ron, and of course to Gazza.

  18. Top half put the brain into gear.
    Bottom half required some skilful steering.
    A puzzle of two halves.
    As they say.
    Especially liked 26a.
    Thanks to the setter, and Gazza for the aptly illustrated review.

  19. Thanks to Mr Ron and to Gazza for the review and hints. A very enjoyable puzzle with some clever clues. Favourites were 5a & 17d, the latter was well hidden & reversed. Needed the hints to parse 22a & 20d. I just thought the T was boosted up so far that it disappeared. Never realised that it meant stolen. Gazza’s explanation much more plausible than mine :-) Cloudy and cool in Central London. Was 1*/3* for me. Off to try the Toughie.

  20. Greetings from a rainy but warm Ottawa. No huge problems with the puzzle today but some rather unsatisfactory definitions such as Alert for Fresh (not in my copy of the BRB), and a rather nasty Americanism for steal.
    For me probably a **/**. Thx to all

  21. As with the last few days, either I’m getting smarter or the puzzles are getting easier, completed whilst waiting to see an orthopaedic consultant in out patients

  22. I don’t know if this questiojn has been asked Gazza, but why is ‘ments’ a brief period in time in 17a

  23. Didn’t feel it was quite as straightforward as others have thought, but not particularly tough either. Perhaps it took longer due to me being continually distracted by watching yet another four or six from England in their record ODI score at Edgbaston :-)

    Favourites were 22a and 26a.

    Many thanks to the setter and to Gazza.

  24. Another straightforward one today…finished in record time (for me). No particular favourites all much of a muchness I thought, Although I rather liked 26a. Just had to check a couple to make sure I had them right..17d couldn’t see why until I read the hint. Thanks to setter and to Gazza. 1*/2* today.

  25. Back from a golfing holiday in Catalonia – Mr Framboise golfs while I caddy with a golf cart when getting a bit pooped! Have quite a few puzzles to catch up with. Liked 26a and 5d. Many thanks to Mr Ron and to Gazza for helping me to parse a few clues. 2*/3*. Quite hot in Hyères, summer has started!

  26. I thought I had completed this in a very good time until I realised that I had emulated Kath with ‘shattered’. Oh well. 19a was my favourite and overall 2*/3*
    Thanks to the setter and to Gazza.

    1. I fell for that too….only realised when I Read your post. I think ‘shattered’ works just as well…… You can be shocked to hear something or shattered to hear something…. And a shock can shatter an object like a glass….obviously not as neat as the real answer…but plausible I think.

  27. A gentle offering. Slight delay in the SE but for no particular reason. Pleasant solve.
    Thanks Mr Ron and Gazza.

  28. **/*** seems right.

    Couldn’t parse 22a and 20d, just bunged them in. Read the blog later on and decided 22a was my favourite clue. Brilliant stuff.

    Many thanks to the setter and to Gazza for an excellent blog. http://bigdave44.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-monalisa/icons/wpml_good.gif

  29. Owing to an unnecessarily busy and difficult night, I forgot to pick up a paper in my rush to get the last train, so I haven’t done this one – yet. I’ll get it tomorrow and try to fit it in then. So I haven’t read the hints or the comments, because that would, as my late mother-in-law used to say, “spoil myself”. But I just thought I’d pop in and say hello anyway. Hello

  30. Thank you setter. A game of two halves and needed your explanation for 20d Gazza. Thanks for your review and hints. Back home this afternoon and hoping Summer has arrived !

  31. A puzzle rich with lovely words, gentle and pleasant to solve. I agree with Gazza’s assessment today – it was doable before work even though I’m up at stupid o’clock these days.

    I have learnt from the review that egg=mine and boosted=steal, and from the comments that jump leads are booster cables across the pond. New knowledge is good to have. So good that perhaps it deserves a word: newledge. I’ll use it again in a comment which people might actually read :).

    Favourite is 26a. The Kitties use “being a vampire” to mean adopting nocturnal habits, so in that sense I am a natural vampire. But I don’t suck blood as a rule, and really hope I’m not a pain in the neck!

    I loved the surface read of 3d – it’s making me want Friday to hurry up and come. Other likes: 6d, 18d and 23d. I could make many more comments, but am off to do other things instead. There’s no rest for the wicked!

    Thanks to the setter and Gazza.

  32. Finally got round to this today after my radio segment was cancelled (after I’d spent a couple of hours on preparation, so thanks for that ABC). I enjoyed it a lot, with no real sticking points. 2*/3*. Thanks to the setter (particularly for 26a) and to Gazza for the typically adept review.

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