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DT 27994

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 27994

A full review by gnomethang

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BD Rating – Difficulty ** Enjoyment ***

This puzzle was published on Saturday, 26th December 2015

Evening All! I am really late on this review due to personal excesses over the Christmas and New Year Periods. My apologies. We had a nice NINA of ‘FEAST OF STEPHEN’  (this being such a date!) hidden in the unchecked letters on the Left and Right of the finished solution. THEN when we looked at the Across and Down clues we noticed that the initial letters of the clues (an acrostic) also spelled out the same. Well done the setter.

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.  You can also add your assessment by selecting from one to five best!


1a           Fish go to the bottom crossing lake (8)
FLOUNDER – To FOUNDER or sink/go to the bottom going around (crossing) L for Lake.

6a           Ending in his text suggests weapons (6)
SWORDS – Start with the ending letter in (hi)S and then add WORDS for text.

9a           Admits tenants not right from the start (6)
ENTERS – Remove the R for right at the start of (r)ENTERS or tenants.

10a         Stable studies article probing series of races (8)
CONSTANT – CONS as a verb for studies or revises/crams and after that AN (indefinite article) inside the (Isle of Man) TT races – CONS T (AN) T.

11a         Thorough appraisal dictates changes (4,4)
ACID TEST – An anagram, indicated by ‘changes’, of DICTATES.

12a         Out former model (6)
EXPOSE – EX for ‘former’ (as in EX-husband) and then POSE for model (also sit!).

13a         Farrago, initially? (8,4)
ALPHABET SOUP – A Farrago is a disordered mixture and ALPHABET SOUP is a synonym. Initially in the clue gives one the pointer to the cryptic definition. Not my favourite clue.

16a         Small one replacing article in row elsewhere in store (8,4)
SQUIRREL AWAY – Start with S for Small, then replace I for one instead of A for an article inside QUARREL (or row) and then finish with AWAY for elsewhere. Phew!

19a         Trick gained by one with clubs, after finesse (6)
TACTIC – Place I for One with C for Clubs after TACT or ‘finesse’.

21a         Each lot scoured after end of repast — towel required (3,5)
TEA CLOTH – Make an anagram (scoured) after the end letter in (repas)T.

23a         Pomade, perhaps — mention different types, initially (8)
OINTMENT – A different anagram of MENTION followed by the initial letter in T(ypes).

24a         Hot water for mischievous child? (6)
PICKLE – Two definitions – In a bit of a PICKLE and then the ‘little PICKLE’ who might cause the same.

25a         English bridge player following female showing the least (6)
FEWEST – Place E for English and WEST for a bridge player (Named from the compass points) after F for Female.

26a         Novel finish in my novel about love (8)
ENDYMION – An END (or finish) and a novel anagram of IN MY around (or about) O for Love. I had Dan Simmons as the author of a novel but apparently someone got there first with a poem (Note the John Keats references throughout the epic Sci-Fi novels!)


2d           Folly of girl touring North America (6)
LUNACY – The girl LUCY outside of (touring) NA for North America.

3d           Enclosure covered in mud, though maiden not appearing to tip over (2-3)
UPEND – Place a P)EN or enclosure inside (m)UD or MUD without the M for Maiden.

4d           Anger after first of dogs is showing viral illness (9)
DISTEMPER – Place TEMPER or ‘anger’ after the first letter in D(ogs) and then IS from the clue.

5d           Soft cheese actor spread with it (7)
RICOTTA – An anagram (spread) of ACTOR and (with) IT.

6d           Tenor in touch? (5)
SENSE – A double definition, the Tenor/feeling or metaphysical SENSE of an argument and a SENSE of Touch for example.

7d           On the move, coot is stalked by cat in film (9)
OCTOPUSSY – An anagram (on the move) of COOT followed by (is being stalked by) a PUSSY. Terrible James Bond!.

8d           Fearful-looking creature ruins a do, unfortunately (8)
DINOSAUR – An anagram (unfortunately) of RUINS A DO for a literal ‘Terrible Lizard’.

13d         Serial broadcast about shot Greek philosopher (9)
ARISTOTLE – A broadcast anagram of SERIAL around (about) a TOT or shot of spirits.

14d         Totally absorbed, warden playing entertaining piano in gym (9)
ENWRAPPED – An anagram (playing) of WARDEN including (or entertaining, bringing in) P for Piano inside PE or Physical Entertainment/gym.

15d         Even a sequel shot around island (8)
EQUALISE – Make an anagram (shot) of A SEQUEL around I for Island.

17d         Pop song with odd title, extremely bizarre (3,2,2)
LET IT BE – An anagram (odd) of TITLE followed by the extreme letters of B(izarr)E.

18d         Husband leaving play for opera based on it (6)
OTELLO – The Shakespeare play was OTHELLO – remove H for Husband to get the opera by Verdi.

20d         Engage in conversation about Ecstasy con (5)
CHEAT – To CHAT or engage in conversation around (about) E for the drug Ecstasy.

22d         Not all of Belloc? Umbrian shows relief (5)
LOCUM – The Doctor’s relief is hidden in (not all of) BelLOC UMbrian.

3 comments on “DT 27994

  1. thanks for the review – you think you were late, I’ve only just done the puzzle! I needed your help to understand my answer to 13 across, and to confirm 6 down – not really 2 meanings, in my view. Thanks again, and to the setter especially for the wonderful Ninas.

  2. Fairly new to the site, but loving it. Your explanatiins are improving my success nearly every day. So thanks fir a great site.

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