Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28717
Hints and tips by pommers
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BD Rating – Difficulty ** – Enjoyment ***
Hola from the Vega Baja and welcome to a non-RayThursday. I don’t know who the setter is but there are some clever bits of wordplay here and some very original anagram indicators. I quite enjoyed it and hope you did too.
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 so don’t click on them unless you really want to see the answer. Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.
1a China protects gold haul for nation (8)
PORTUGAL: Start with heraldic gold and a word meaning haul or pull and around it (protects) put another word for your mate (china in rhyming slang).
6a End of all but the last of medium-dry wine (6)
DEMISE: A two word phrase (4,3) describing not dry champagne without its last letter (all but the last of). This is an odd one. Although a literal translation of the French phrase is Half Dry the type of wine is commonly known as medium-sweet – from Collins:- (of wine, esp champagne) medium-sweet.
9a Selection of odder maladies relating to organ (6)
DERMAL: The organ it’s relating to is your skin and it’s hiding in (selection of) ODDER MALADIES.
10a Rioting is over — caught in a new hostility (8)
AVERSION: An anagram (rioting) of IS OVER placed between (caught in) an A (from the clue) and N(ew).
11a Beset by trouble, airmen with ultimately duff fuel (8)
PARAFFIN: Our military airmen with an extra F (with ultimately dufF) placed inside (beset by) some trouble gives the fuel otherwise known as kerosene.
13a Army officers ran non-specialist shop (7,5)
GENERAL STORE: Take some high –ranking army officers and a word meaning ran or ripped and split it (7,5).
16a Landowners in arrangement to sell lord hams (12)
SMALLHOLDERS: Anagram (arrangement) of SELL LORD HAMS.
19a Reveal Frenchman’s one request after getting married (6)
UNMASK: The French word for one followed by M(arried) and a word meaning to request.
21a Possessing case? (8)
GENITIVE: A not very cryptic definition of the grammatical case indicating possession.
23a Quietly remove painting, perhaps (8)
ABSTRACT: A word meaning remove is also a style of painting. Not sure what the word quietly brings to this clue.
24a Outsiders in Sale are characters to be shifted (6)
ALIENS: Anagram (are characters to be shifted) of IN SALE.
25a Revolutionary astute about black gemstones (6)
BERYLS: You need a word meaning astute or crafty, two letters meaning about and a B(lack) and then reverse the lot (revolutionary).
26a Given the OK, I’d fire at criminal (8)
RATIFIED: Anagram (criminal) of ID FIRE AT.
2d Working with upset celebrity, not suitable for many (3-3)
ONE MAN: Take a two letter word for working, as in not switched off, and follow with a reversal (upset in a down clue) of a celebrity (4) and split the result (3,3)
3d Father supporting crew without energy to reach US city (5)
TAMPA: Take a crew but without the E(nergy) and follow with (supporting in a down clue) a short word for your father.
5d Left well-paying job to become student (7)
LEARNER: L(eft) followed by a nice little well paid job.
6d Prepare to put on clothing (5)
DRESS: Double definition.
8d Entertainer‘s to demonstrate climbing large apparatus (8)
SHOWGIRL: A word meaning to demonstrate or explain followed by a reversal (climbing in a down clue) of L(arge) and some apparatus or equipment.
13d Good colleague accepts worker with right spirit (9)
GALLANTRY: Start with G(ood) and a colleague, or someone who’s on your side, and insert (accepts) one of the usual workers and R(ight).
14d Delay surfacing — overheard force prepare an ambush (3,2,4)
LIE IN WAIT: A phrase (3,2) meaning to delay surfacing, as in delay getting out of bed, followed by a word which sounds like (overheard) a force, of an argument perhaps.
15d Willing, in the morning, to help (8)
AMENABLE: The two letters for in the morning followed by a word meaning to help or make possible.
17d The girl taken another way becomes less wearying (7)
LIGHTER: Anagram (taken another way) of THE GIRL.
18d A meeting-place’s means of access (6)
AVENUE: A (from the clue) followed by a meeting place or location where something happens.
20d Romantic kiss on vacation includes bite (5)
KEATS: This romantic was a romantic poet. He’s made from K(is)S (kiss on vacation) with a word meaning to bite or chew inserted (includes)
22d One in possession of article with force after them? (5)
THIEF: An all-in-one. The force after the person in possession of the article is the police force. Surely it should be force after HIM as the answer is singular.
Favourite for me was 24a because of the excellent anagram indicator. Also on the podium are 14d and 13a.
Quick crossword pun: BACKED + EERIER = BACTERIA