Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28160
Hints and tips by pommers
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BD Rating – Difficulty *** – Enjoyment ****
Hola from the Vega Baja where it’s very hot and humid and I’ve just heard a rather loud clap of thunder.
I’m pretty sure this is a RayT production as we have the Queen, some innuendo including a nude star and a lot of stretched synonyms. I rather enjoyed the challenge but I know there will be the usual complaints as there are some whoppers today. Overall it didn’t cause too many problems but perhaps a tad trickier than Ray’s recent offerings.
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.
1a Combat with lives in balance (6)
RESIST: A word meaning lives or exists is inserted (in) into a word for the balance, as in what’s left over. This sets the tone for the rest of the puzzle. Fair but slightly obscure.
4a Radio set used to find celestial body (8)
ASTEROID: Anagram (used) of RADIO SET.
9a Physical resistance found in Tube (6)
CARNAL: Start with a tube or duct and insert (found in) the abbreviation of Resistance.
10a Lady exposes Mellors’s rear, holding on (8)
BARONESS: This lady is a titled one. She’s a word meaning exposes or undresses followed by the last letter (rear) of Mellors with the ON from the clue inserted (holding).
11a More corpulent and porky right after drink (8)
PORTLIER: Start with a drink of fortified wine and after it put a porky pie and R(ight). Not sure which is the better word here – the answer or ‘corpulent’.
13a Films covert agency employing flipped operatives (6)
CINEMA: The usual US covert agency has inserted (employing) some operatives or workers but they are reversed (flipped).
15a Ban nude star sketchily covering up — too common (13)
SUPERABUNDANT: Anagram (sketchily) of BAN NUDE STAR placed around (covering) UP.
18a Erudite men sat around giving inferior judgement (13)
UNDERESTIMATE: Anagram (around) of ERUDITE MEN SAT.
22a Aircraft proceeds slowly following battle’s opening (6)
BLIMPS: These are aircraft because they fly but they aren’t aeroplanes. Start with a B (Battle’s opening) and follow with a word meaning proceeds slowly, perhaps because you have a sore foot.
24a Queen backing about arrangement for instrument (8)
RECORDER: Reverse (backing) the usual two letters for Queen, follow with a single letter for about and lastly a word meaning arrangement and you’ll get a woodwind instrument.
26a United, wearing team colour, worked out (8)
REASONED: You need to start with a phrase (2,3) meaning united or in unison and around it (wearing) you need to put the colour of the shirts of a famous United football team.
27a Burn energy taking runs (6)
STREAM: This is a burn in Scotland. It’s R(uns) inserted (taking) into some energy.
28a Tortured artist swallows Ecstasy before English essay (8)
TREATISE: Anagram (tortured) of ARTIST with E(cstasy) inserted (swallows) and then E(nglish).
29a Defeated European saint buried in part of garden (6)
BESTED: E(uropean) and the usual saint are inserted (buried in) a part of the garden where flowers grow.
1d Formula developed about energy and speed of light (6)
RECIPE: Start with a word meaning developed as in ready to eat and place it around E(energy) and the letter which represents the speed of light.
2d ‘Shocked‘ almost certainly peeped hiding Sun (9)
SURPRISED: Take a word for certainly without its last letter (almost) and follow with a word meaning peeped, as in was a bit nosy, and then insert (hiding) an S(un).
5d False alarm ends — quiet ahead (4)
SHAM: Take the two ends of AlarM and before them (ahead) put a two letter exclamation requesting silence.
6d Movement Number One with volume turned up (7)
EMOTION: Start with the abbreviation of number followed by I (one) and then a large volume or book and reverse the lot (turned up in a down clue). Not sure about movement as the definition.
7d Overly big? Excessive size evident initially (5)
OBESE: First letters (initially) of the other five words in the clue. I’ve corrected the typo in the web version. Was it OK in the paper?
8d Horror from nudist as ‘textiles’ gathered round (8)
DISTASTE: Our first lurker. It’s hidden (gathered round) in nudist as textiles.
12d Trespasser gendarme traps climbing exit (6)
EGRESS: And our second lurker, but this one’s backwards (climbing in a down clue). It’s in trespasser gendarme.
14d Make liquid boil, say, for serving up (6)
OBLIGE: Make as in to make someone do something. It’s an anagram (liquid) of BOIL followed by the usual two letters for ‘say’ or for example reversed (serving up in a down clue).
16d Close partners in heartless mistrust after a change (9)
AMENDMENT: Start with the A from the clue. After that you need MT (heartless M(istrus)T) and into that lot you need to insert (in) a word meaning close or finish and some partners as in husbands or male sexual partners. The bit about the partners comes from the BRB and partner comes up as a synonym in Collins but not the other way round. Pushing things a bit too far IMHO.
17d Grate temperature rising in fire’s flare-up (8)
OUTBURST: A word for grate, as in chafe, and T(emperature) are reversed (rising in a down clue) and inserted into (in) a word meaning fire or sack.
19d Relationship of Left under attack (7)
RAPPORT: The nautical word for left placed after (under in a down clue) a word for attack or knock.
20d Evangelist to lapse improperly (7)
APOSTLE: Anagram (improperly) of TO LAPSE.
21d Conceived and nourished eating butter? (6)
FRAMED: A word meaning nourished or given food has inserted (eating) an animal which might butt you if it’s in a bad mood.
23d Rodent caught inside that is furious (5)
IRATE: A three letter rodent inserted (inside) the two letters for ‘that is’.
25d The French start to strike? Not so much (4)
LESS: The in French (but it’s plural) followed by an S (start to Strike).
Since I wrote the preamble it has started peeing down big time. There’s some good clues here but my favourite was 27a for it’s rather clever definition.
P.S. It’s stopped raining and the sun’s come out to play!
The Quick Crossword pun: bar+gut+hell=bagatelle