Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28443
Hints and tips by pommers
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BD Rating – Difficulty ** – Enjoyment ***
Hi everyone. As Deep Threat is on hols you’ll just have to put up with me doing a bit of deputising. I have blogged on Friday before but as far as I can see the last one was 27th December 2013 so it’s a fair while since the Don and I locked horns. This was a pretty fine puzzle with no real obscurities and no religious bits so not one to overtax the little grey cells. I enjoyed it and will be interested to hear your views.
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 Some French chief returning, in charge and authoritarian (8)
DESPOTIC: The French for “some” followed by a word for chief backwards (returning) and then the usual two letters for in charge.
9a In haste pupils advance (4,2)
STEP UP: A lurker. The answer’s hidden in (in) haste pupils.
10a Begin a fight after series of tennis games (3,5)
SET ABOUT: Start with a series of tennis games and then (after) you need A (from the clue) and a fight as in a boxing match perhaps.
11a Pole working with me embraces you as a member of staff (8)
EMPLOYEE: Anagram (working) of POLE ME placed around (embraces) an old word for “you”.
12a Something dry and fruity is favoured by artist (6)
RAISIN: A dried fruit is the usual artist followed by IS (from the clue) and a word for favoured or fashionable.
16a Contradict part of argument that may be used by composer (12)
COUNTERPOINT: A technique in musical composition is a word for contradict followed by a part or focus of an argument.
19a An entrance’s gemstones (6)
AGATES: Start with an indefinite article followed by an entrance, to the garden perhaps, and then the S to get some gemstones.
21a Textual changes in respect of western ceremonies (8)
REWRITES: Two letters for in respect of or about followed by W(estern) and the some religious ceremonies.
23a Source of annoyance — undergarments I have rubbing (8)
ABRASIVE: A (source of Annoyance) followed by some lady’s undergarments and the a short form of “I have”.
24a Beyond redemption? You can’t help that! (3,3)
TOO BAD: Double definition.
25a Bill gathers information, joining unknown business (6)
AGENCY: Start with the usual two letters for a bill or account and insert (gathers) some information and the an algebraic unknown.
26a Waiting is irksome — a visitor finally comes in (8)
TARRYING: Take a word for irksome and insert A (from the clue) and R (visitoR finally).
2d Ben excitedly grabs another man in Bury (6)
ENTOMB: An anagram (excitedly) of BEN with a short man’s name inserted (grabs). I really don’t like the use of “man” to indicate a bloke’s name where there are hundreds to choose from. Lazy IMHO.
3d Badly written stuff, a line from the Vatican (5)
PAPAL: Some bad prose followed by A (from the clue) and then L(ine).
4d Sticky pea, horrible thing to munch (5,4)
TIPSY CAKE: Anagram (horrible) of STICKY PEA. This stuff certainly isn’t horrible!
5d Little son that is joining another in bed becomes most comfortable (7)
COSIEST: S (little Son) and the two letters for “that is” and then another S(on) all inserted into (in) a child’s bed.
6d Animal showing excessive hesitation (5)
OTTER: Three letters for excessive followed by one of the usual hesitations, not UM but the other one.
7d Message coming on time outside port — carriage required (9)
CABRIOLET: An old fashioned sort of message sent by telegraph and T(ime) placed around (outside) the main port of Brazil. It was once a type of carriage but now it’s a word for a convertible car . . .
8d Any number in erudite mingling, as old students meeting each other again? (8)
REUNITED: N (any number) inserted into an anagram (mingling) of ERUDITE.
13d Limit studies before school (9)
CONSTRAIN: A word for studies followed by school or coach.
15d Chow for the chow in this possibly? (5-3)
DOGGY BAG: Cryptic definition of what you might use to take home leftovers from a restaurant.
17d Warning — river beginning to rise. shelter! (7)
PORTENT: The famous Italian river followed by R (beginning to Rise) and then a canvas shelter beloved of boy scouts.
18d Get back control, having penned good article (6)
REGAIN: start with the control of a horse and insert (having penned) G(ood) and an indefinite article.
20d Bright sun greeting American city (5)
SHINY: A charade of S(un), an informal greeting and a US city, not LA but the other one.
22d Particular use of language in club secretary’s conclusion (5)
IRONY: A golf club followed by a Y (secretary’s conclusion).
I think my favourite is 15d because it’s silly. What was it that walked your dog?
Quickie pun: BERTH + DAY BOY = BIRTHDAY BOY