Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27898
Hints and tips by Deep Threat
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BD Rating – Difficulty *** – Enjoyment ***
Good morning from South Staffs
I took a while to get going on today’s Giovanni, perhaps because I like to work down from the top of the grid, and this time the bottom half fell into place much more readily than the top. 8d was the last one in – I was sure there had to be a horse in there somewhere – so well into *** difficulty for me. As usual with Giovanni’s clues, once you’ve solved them, you wonder why you were held up.
In the hints below, the definitions are underlined. The answers are hidden under the ‘Click here!’ buttons, so don’t click if you don’t want to see them.
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1a Woman in charge, a complainer, ruler in muddle (10)
MANAGERESS – Put together A from the clue, someone who is a persistent complainer, and the regnal cypher of our ruler, then wrap a muddle around the result.
6a Gardener’s son revealed by Somerset House (4)
SETH – This is the third son of the chap who worked in the Garden of Eden: he’s hidden in the clue.
9a A ben scaled could be construed as this (10)
ASCENDABLE – Anagram (could be construed) of A BEN SCALED. The whole clue gives the definition.
10a Wise guy, the crossword compiler — but not an abstainer (4)
SEER – Remove the letters used to indicate someone who is a total abstainer from alcohol from the word commonly used to describe a person who compiles crosswords.
13a Hitting the sack with only a bit of the body tucked in (7)
BASHING – A part of the body, placed inside a sack or container.
15a Chaps in planes mean to fly across Ireland (6)
AIRMEN – An anagram (to fly) of MEAN wrapped around an abbreviation for Ireland.
16a Shabby-sounding item taken from Hamish’s allotment? (6)
TATTIE – The Scottish word for the vegetable that goes with haggis and neeps sounds like a word for shabby.
17a Be a bit mad, having lost the thread? (4,1,5,5)
HAVE A SCREW LOOSE – A colloquial phrase for being a bit mad is also a literal description of having lost track of a metal item which has a thread.
18a Dismissed a knight involved in heavy defeat (3,3)
RAN OUT – A (from the clue) and the chess notation for a knight placed inside a heavy defeat, giving the past tense of a verb describing one of the ways of dismissing a batsman at cricket.
20a More than one animal goes by sea — any number brought aboard (6)
SNAILS – The algebraic symbol for ‘any number’ inside a verb meaning ‘goes by sea’.
21a Leader of Democrats backing savage cut (7)
SEVERED – A word for savage of harsh followed by the first letter of Democrats.
22a Return of workers’ organisation one dismissed as unacceptable to toffs (3-1)
NON-U – Reverse (return) a workers’ organisation, and remove the Roman numeral for one.
Phone for the fish knives, Norman
As cook is a little unnerved;
You kiddies have crumpled the serviettes
And I must have things daintily served.
Are the requisites all in the toilet?
The frills round the cutlets can wait
Till the girl has replenished the cruets
And switched on the logs in the grate.
It’s ever so close in the lounge dear,
But the vestibule’s comfy for tea
And Howard is riding on horseback
So do come and take some with me
Now here is a fork for your pastries
And do use the couch for your feet;
I know that I wanted to ask you-
Is trifle sufficient for sweet?
Milk and then just as it comes dear?
I’m afraid the preserve’s full of stones;
Beg pardon, I’m soiling the doileys
With afternoon tea-cakes and scones.
25a A docile man stirred up, influenced by a devil (10)
DEMONIACAL – Anagram (stirred up) of A DOCILE MAN.
26a Vehicle was first after starting second (4)
SLED – Second followed by a verb meaning ‘was first’ (in a race).
27a Mob around Italy getting about, making advance (4,6)
GAIN GROUND – A generic term for a criminal mob such as the Mafia wrapped around the IVR for Italy, followed by a word meaning about or approximately.
1d Nasty plan (4)
MEAN – Double definition, the second being a verb for ‘plan’ or ‘intend’.
2d Charming home set up overlooking church (4)
NICE – The common expression for ‘at home’, reversed and followed by an abbreviation for the Church of England.
3d Good to reduce the courage of potential killer (6)
GUNMAN – Good, followed by a verb meaning to reduce the courage or virility of someone.
4d Try something that looks impossible? Oh, from earth once very tricky! (5,3,3,4)
REACH FOR THE MOON – Anagram (very tricky) of OH FROM EARTH ONCE.
5d Mum is upset — time to give things up? (6)
SILENT – Reverse IS (from the clue) and add the liturgical season which precedes Easter, when pleasures such as alcohol, tobacco or chocolate are traditionally given up.
7d Chosen man in charge of modern type of technology (10)
ELECTRONIC – Put together a word for chosen, the short form of a man’s name, and the abbreviation for ‘in charge’.
8d When trained he’s a better animal (10)
HARTEBEEST – Anagram (when trained) of HE’S A BETTER.
ARVE Error: need id and provider
11d Groups coming together chat about Wagner’s work (10)
GATHERINGS – A word for chat or gossip wrapped around the title of a series of operas by Wagner.
12d Source established beyond doubt — one of the forebears half forgotten (10)
PROVENANCE – ‘Established beyond doubt’, as in a court of law, followed by the first half of a forebear.
13d Country vehicle conveying drunken earl (7)
BELARUS – A public transport vehicle wrapped around an anagram (drunken) of EARL.
14d Floral arrangement guy brought up and put down (7)
GARLAND – Reverse a word for guy or tease, then add a word for ‘put down’ (an aircraft, for instance).
19d Girl runs into river — start of adventure (6)
TERESA – Put the cricket abbreviation for Runs into a river in the North-East of England, then add the first letter of Adventure to get a girl’s name.
20d Older one is falling apart, little right! (6)
SENIOR – Anagram (falling apart) of ONE IS, followed by Right.
23d Bit of the crust a light brown? (4)
ECRU – Hidden in the clue.
24d Gee, boy is cock-a-hoop! (4)
GLAD – The letter whose name is Gee followed by a boy or young man.
The Quick Crossword pun MINER + PROFIT = MINOR PROPHET