Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28088
Hints and tips by pommers
+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +
BD Rating – Difficulty *** – Enjoyment ****
Hola from the Vega Baja and welcome to a very enjoyable puzzle. I’m pretty sure it’s a RayT production – it’s all short clues, some slightly stretched synonyms, a couple of lurkers, Charles’ mother makes an appearance, there’s a bikini almost covering the top and a son chasing skirt. It’s gotta be a RayT with all that hasn’t it? It was heading for a comfortable ** difficulty but then I stalled a bit in the NE corner so *** it became. I’ll be interested to hear what you all make of it.
As usual the ones I liked most are in blue. The definitions are underlined in the clues and the answers are under the “click here” buttons. 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 Dangerous guns a fellow’s carrying (6)
UNSAFE: Today we start with a lurker. The answer’s hidden in (carrying) GUNS A FELLOW.
4a Get date with girl as naval weightlifter? (8)
WINDLASS: This nautical or naval weightlifter is usually used to lift the anchor. It’s a charade of a word meaning get or acquire, D(ate) and then one of the usual girls. We didn’t have one of these on Firenze, I had to pull the anchor up by hand, phew!
9a Tell Eastern story, reading over (6)
RELATE: Take E(astern), a story and then R(eading) and reverse the lot (over).
10a Dish, possibly Roman, that’s devoured around Italy (8)
MACARONI: Start with an anagram (possibly) of ROMAN and insert into it (devoured) two letters for around or about and follow that lot with the IVR code for Italy. And of course the dish is devoured in Italy!
12a Wholly English triumph left out in story (8)
ALLEGORY: A charade of a word for wholly, E(nglish) and a word for to triumph or exult but with the L removed (Left out).
15a Form of enquiries, not bothered about answer? (13)
QUESTIONNAIRE: This is a form with a lot of questions on it so it could be described as a ‘form of enquiries’. It’s an anagram (bothered) of ENQUIRIES NOT placed around (about) an A(nswer)
18a Imagined upset stomach with spicy starter of olives (13)
PSYCHOSOMATIC: An anagram (upset) of STOMACH SPICY and an O (starter of Olives). I had some spicy olives with a pre-prandial beer or two last night.
22a About face leading to lie (6)
RESIDE: This is lie as is ‘lies in’ or ‘is vested in’. It’s two letters for about followed by a face, of a cube perhaps. At first I couldn’t see how this works but Collins give this usage example:- ‘political power resides in military strength’.
26a Voluntary work — it set back loan being arranged (8)
OPTIONAL: Start with the usual two letter work, then TI (IT set back) and then an anagram (being arranged) of LOAN.
27a Approached artist that captures image (6)
CAMERA: A word for approached or arrived followed by the usual artist.
28a Son’s changed despite chasing skirt (8)
SIDESTEP: Skirt as in go around or avoid. It’s S(on) followed by an anagram (changed) of DESPITE.
1d Unusually passionate row or awful rumpus initially (6)
UPROAR: First letters (initially) of all the other words in the clue.
2d Talk to yourself? (9)
SOLILOQUY: A sort of Rufusesque not very cryptic definition. Or am I missing something here?
3d Blubber that is enveloping bloke nearly producing lethargy (7)
FATIGUE: Take some blubber and then the usual ‘that is’ and insert (enveloping) a bloke without his last letter (nearly). Not MAN but another three letter term for a bloke.
5d Character initiating insurrection led Islamic republic (4)
IRAN: The letter that starts the word Insurrection followed by a word meaning led as in managed.
6d Doctor previously dealing with pressure (7)
DRAGOON: One of the two letter doctors followed by a word for previously or in the past and then two letters for dealing with and you get a verb meaning to pressure or coerce.
7d Bikini, say, completely covering most of top (5)
ATOLL: What Bikini in the Marshall Islands is an example of. It’s a word for completely placed around (covering) the first two letters of (most of) TOp.
8d Rests when smashed over leg for one single (8)
SPINSTER: This one single is a woman. She’s an anagram (smashed) of RESTS placed around (over) a slang term for a leg.
11d Gripe pain eating rhubarb (7)
PROTEST: Gripe as in complain. A pain or nuisance goes around (eating) a word for rhubarb or rubbish.
14d Travel to work and arrive practically speechless (7)
COMMUTE: A word for arrive without its last letter (practically) followed by a word meaning speechless, not surprised but literally having no voice.
16d Rough hip join round top of leg (9)
INCLEMENT: Rough as in rough weather. A two letter word for hip or fashionable is followed by a word which can mean join or glue together placed around L (top of Leg).
19d Shocking retreats abandoning leader of Tories (7)
HIDEOUS: Some retreats where outlaws might lurk but without the T (leader of Tories)
20d Dash to catch Queen in spectators’ area (7)
TERRACE: A word for dash, as is a very small amount of something, is placed around (to catch) the usual two letters for the Queen to give the part of a stadium where spectators stand.
21d Chain’s a necessity to restrain lunatic (6)
INSANE: The second lurker. It’s hiding (to restrain) in CHAINS A NECESSITY.
23d Full smorgasbord is empty and sandwiches consumed (5)
SATED: Take all the inner letters (is empty) out of smorgasbord and place what’s left around (sandwiches) a word meaning consumed.
25d Bra dried oddly sheer (4)
BARE: Alternate letters (oddly) of BRA DRIED. I’m not convinced by this one. I looked up the answer in Collins thesaurus and it lists sheer as a synonym but not the other way round.
There’s a lot of good stuff here but for me it’s 21d that wins by a short head.
Quick crossword pun : NUMB + BUTT + TEN = NUMBER TEN