Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27936
Hints and tips by Kitty
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BD Rating – Difficulty */** – Enjoyment ***
Welcome to Big Dave’s Crossword Blog on this unremarkable October morning (at the time and place of writing) which I hope finds you well and in good spirits.
Rufus has provided us with some light and fluffy entertainment in his trademark style.
I was all ready to provide the multi-word patterns for those of you who solve on tablets and don’t enjoy the extra challenge of figuring those out, but the issue seems to be fixed. Hurrah!
The definitions are underlined in the clues below. The answers are hidden under the ANSWER boxes. The “click here!” is not an instruction but an option – click to reveal the answer should you wish.
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1a Cab ranks offering quick fare here? (5,3)
SNACK BAR: We kick off with a nice anagram. Jumble the letters (offering) of CAB RANKS. This is the kind of fare you swallow
6a Father, finished working, is to depart quickly (3,3)
POP OFF: The first word of the answer can be a pet name for father, the second can mean not working and the whole is as underlined
9a It is twice returned by an old painter (6)
TITIAN: This one has been around a bit, but is still nice. You need the IT from the clue reversed and repeated (twice returned) followed by the AN
10a Attractive catch in witchcraft (8)
MAGNETIC: Three letters for capture or gain inside witchcraft or sorcery
11a Presentation of laws to be amended (8)
BESTOWAL: This is an anagram (amended) of LAWS TO BE
12a Such a dog may be involved in many dubious accounts (6)
SHAGGY: There is a type of dog featured in a three-word phrase meaning a whimsically long-drawn-out story. Fetch!
13a Mixed drink made girl lean drunkenly (5,3,4)
LAGER AND LIME: A clue which just screams “anagram” but where you have to do a little bit of counting to identify which is the indicator and which is the definition. Mix the letters (drunkenly) of MADE GIRL LEAN. Delicious!
16a Lynch your boss? Be ashamed of yourself (4,4,4)
HANG ONE’S HEAD: This phrase could mean to kill the chief in the manner described, but generally means to be deeply ashamed. Without checking letters I’d have bunged “your” in as the second word (as it is in the clue), but it’s the other one
19a Desert storms – didn’t push on (6)
RESTED: It’s an anagram (storms) of DESERT
21a Final notice for the Press? (8)
OBITUARY: A gentle cryptic definition of an article about a recently deceased person
23a By no means a fleet response that may raise a laugh (3-5)
ONE-LINER: This clue did raise a smile. Remove the hyphen from this quip to see a vessel which could be a single unit of a fleet. Nominate your favourite one of these below and I’ll add an illustration of the winner tonight
24a Property in East, say (6)
ESTATE: The property we’re looking for (which may be called Chestnut Cottage) is found in the E(ast) together with a word meaning speak
25a Blacksmith who makes money illegally? (6)
FORGER: The answer can mean a metalworker or alternatively a counterfeiter
26a Sinner he reformed and put in a hallowed place (8)
ENSHRINE: An anagram (reformed) of SINNER HE. We’re in the present tense here, even if the surface reading suggests otherwise
2d Notts opener wasn’t well caught (6)
NAILED: The first letter (opener) of N(otts) followed by a word meaning was sickly or indisposed
3d Hard rock for Mr Eastwood (5)
CLINT: Well, I’d heard of the hard rock which rhymes with the this, but the answer itself was a new one on me. Mr Eastwood gives the game away though
4d Transport that’s climbed upon for personal advancement (9)
BANDWAGON: Jump on this figuratively to follow a trend or literally as illustrated below
5d Walker or climber (7)
RAMBLER: There are two definitions here. The climber, being plant not person, is flora. The walker may be Flora (or have any other name) and, if overly verbose (as I am being in this very hint), may also be a third definition of the answer. I have been known to be one of these: in fact there was a time when … yadda yadda yadda…
6d They may hold up trains (5)
PAGES: Since the solver might be expected to think first of rail-bound locomotives, it is logical to immediately discount these and go seek other meanings of train. Maybe go to a wedding. Which I did, but was held up a little because BRIDESMAIDS is far too long. I despair!
7d Persisted and finally succeeded (9)
PREVAILED: Two definitions: persevere, or continue; and win through
8d Just willing to be easy prey (4,4)
FAIR GAME: A straightforward word sum where the first and second words of the clue respectively define the first and second words in the answer. Together, they make a legitimate object for attack or ridicule
13d Frivolous commercial for electrical device (5,4)
LIGHT PLUG: Exactly the same form here as for the previous clue. I couldn’t find a specific device with this name
14d Denis seen to be wanting (9)
NEEDINESS: Anagram (to be) of DENIS SEEN. Wanting here is a noun. Chambers used to have a waggish definition of “gerund-grinder” but it’s been expunged
15d Tie down a lunatic in attack (4,4)
WADE INTO: A mash-up (lunatic) of the letters in TIE DOWN A
17d Southern company press for means of punishment (7)
SCOURGE: Make a whip by following the abbreviations for S(outhern) and CO(mpany) with a verb meaning strongly encourage. Oww!
18d Language rarely heard in British school (6)
BRETON: Br(itish) and then a posh school
20d He gives direction in entrance (5)
DONOR: Simple once you’ve isolated the definition. Poke one of the compass points into an everyday type of entrance
22d Unqualified to make a statement (5)
UTTER: Rufus always gives us plenty of definitions, and here are two more to finish with. The second is straightforward (say, speak) while the first means out-and-out or absolute
That was fun – thanks, Rufus.
If you spot any of the deliberate mistakes (there is at least one) please flag them up and I’ll make corrections after I return this evening if nobody steps in sooner.
Do chip in below the line and join the conversation!
The Quick Crossword pun: mar+can+tunny=Mark Antony