Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27990
Hints and tips by “And Miffypops”
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BD Rating – Difficulty ** – Enjoyment ***
Good morning. This will be my last review before Christmas arrives so a very Merry Christmas to one and all of you. Christmas came early for me last night with a fine performance from Sir Van Morrison at Nell’s club in London. Thank you Nell for sorting seats out for Sharon and I and thanks to your Dad just for being himself.
Thanks to Rufus for the Monday challenges throughout the year. Merry Christmas to you and yours. I am not convinced that this one is from you so I will hold fire just in case.
I hope you all get lots and lots of whatever it is you need. Wow!
Quote from the blog
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Todays hints and tips have been lovingly created by “And Miffypops”. Definitions are underlined. Together they should lead you to the answers you may be struggling with. If you are completely bamboozled befuddled and bewildered click on the greyed out box to reveal the answer.
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.
1a He’ll let you have lots at knock-down prices (10)
AUCTIONEER: The geezer with the gavel who says “Going, Going and Pfff, It’s Gone” at houses such as Christies and Sotheby’s
6a Compete with Western opinion (4)
VIEW: Take a verb meaning to compete eagerly with someone and add the W(estern)
10a An indication of approval backing Italian lady (5)
DONNA: The name of my niece who is not Italian can be found by lifting the AN straight from the clue and adding the verb meaning to raise and lower one’s head briefly as a signal of assent. We now need to reverse the whole as indicated by the word backing
11a Talks continuously disconcert offspring (7,2)
RATTLES ON: Split 6,3 we have an informal verb meaning to make someone nervous ,worried or irritated, followed by a male relative but not your daught
12a Extinct animal may still make raid on us (8)
DINOSAUR: A jumpoutatcha anagram (may still make) of RAID ON US
13a This may light up the game (5)
MATCH: An implement for lighting a fire is also a sporting contest between two teams.
15a Untidy serving men eat here (2,1,4)
IN A MESS: A double definition. The serving men may be in the army.
17a Catchphrases put new gloss over a nation’s leader (7)
SLOGANS: Anagram (new) of GLOSS and including the initial letter (leader) of N(ations)
19a Haul fish around these islands? (7)
LEEWARD: As in 4ac we have to reverse (around) what the clue yields to find the name of these islands in the West Indies. Split 4,3 We first need a verb meaning to pull or drag something just as a dentist might do with a tooth. We then need the name of a three lettered fish. fish. Take your pick from these: Bar, Bib, Cod, Char, Dab, Eel, Gar, Ged, Ide, Par, Ray. Roe, Sar, and Tai
21a Give credit? You need faith to do it (7)
BELIEVE: Another double definition. Rather easy I thought
22a Drops of water (5)
FALLS: Pistyll Rhaeadr and Aira Force are two examples of such water drops
24a Repeatedly hit on the forehead to intimidate (8)
BROWBEAT: Another one to split. This time 4,4 The first being another word for your forehead and the second meaning to hit, like a drum perhaps
27a Rings and stones are processed (9)
RESONATES: Anagram (processed) of ARE STONES. I thought this should end in a D so I put one in. You would think that would teach me to use pencils and check my anagrams. It won’t though.
28a Country taking in reciprocal support (5)
INDIA: Our third reversal of the morning. Lift the word In from the clue and add a word meaning support or help but reversed or reciprocated
29a Unauthorised retreat (4)
NOOK: This retreat or cranny is only unauthorised when split 2,2
30a Not even a gymnast would use such bars (10)
ASYMMETRIC: A full stop after the word even might give the game away here but it would ruin the surface reading. These items of gymnastic equipment are not parallel. Careful with the spelling or 21d becomes impossible
1d Military assistant gives help on a point (4)
AIDE: Use the same three lettered word for help or support that we used at 28across and add one of the points of the compass
2d Frank had a meal, but he hasn’t yet a seat (9)
CANDIDATE: Yet another split. This time 6,3. A word meaning frank or open followed by the past tense of eat
3d State I had found uplifting with love (5)
IDAHO: This American potato growing state is known as The Gem State. To find it we need the letter I from the clue. The word HAD reversed (uplifted) and the letter which depicts a love score in tennis.
4d Points about unusual Roman invaders (7)
NORMANS: Place two compass points around an anagram (unusual) of ROMAN
5d Threatens to get money (7)
EXTORTS: A double definition
7d Not flush, but accepted by social clique (5)
INSET: Spit the answer 2,3 to find the social clique.
8d Gunner’s school? (10)
WINCHESTER: This school founded in 1382 is also the name of a repeating rifle. The Gun That Won the West
9d Important shipping line (8)
PLIMSOLL: A line painted on a boat to indicate when it is fully laden.
14d Resolution not to be broken (4,2,4)
WILL OF IRON: A burning determination that cannot be stopped or hindered by anything
16d Passing of time with pleasing novel (8)
ELAPSING: Anagram ((novel) of PLEASING
18d A heroic swimmer accepting kiss from a great man in history (9)
ALEXANDER: Bear with me. This may take some time. Long ago and far away this lad whose name you need to solve the clue fancied this girl called Hero who lived in a tower across the sea. He swam across every night and made sweet love to her guided by a light she set atop the tower she lived in. Presumably he swam home every morning. This went on all through the summer months. When the winter came he swam through a storm but the wind blew the guiding light out and he lost his way and drowned. I am not surprised. The poor lad must have been all washed up and wasted. What with all the swimming, tower climbing and endless nookie that he had endured. When Hero saw his dead body washed up on the shore she threw herself from her tower and died so that they could be forever together. There are easier ways of doing things. Bouncy Castles. I met Saint Sharon on a bouncy castle.
To solve the clue we need to put the name of this soft lad after the letter A from the clue and insert one of his sweet kisses to get the name of an historical figure known as The Great.
20d Let dates be set for discussions (7)
DEBATES: Anagram (set) of DATES BE
21d Flower blooms, the last to come up around the start of spring (7)
BLOSSOM: Last one in for me due to an incorrect spelling at 30 across. Move the last letter of the word BLOOMS to the left within the word (or up in a down clue) and add another S from the start of s(pring). Once the final checker was corrected the answer was obvious. I then tried to justify an anagram of BLOOMS and an S but could not figure the wordplay.
23d Catch results in girl getting duck (5)
LASSO: A word meaning a girl and the tennis score for love will give another word meaning to catch with a lariat.
25d She has reached match point (5)
BRIDE: This girl is dressed up like a meringue and is about to meet her 13ac and say “I Do”
26d Mineral used in ancient alchemy (4)
TALC: A lurker hiding away within the confines of the clue
RIP Jimmy Hill. Coventry loved you.
The Quick Crossword pun: anon+knee+mouse=anonymous