Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28789
Hints and tips by a duntish* pommers
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BD Rating – Difficulty *** – Enjoyment ****
I have to confess to being rather hungover this morning so the puzzle might be a lot easier than I found it. There was some serious drowning of sorrows last night after England managed to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory which nearly matched the level of the biblical drowning that caused that chap Noah to build an ark.
Anyway to the puzzle. I’m pretty sure this is a RayT production as all the markers are there apart from Her Majesty has taken the day off. Perhaps she too is recovering from a drowning of sorrows. As I said I found it a tad tricky but very enjoyable and I hope you found it the same.
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 Purge using concoction of bitter aloe (10)
OBLITERATE: Anagram (concoction of) of BITTER ALOE. At least this was a reasonably benign start.
10a Can or tin formed to hold preserve finally? (9)
CONTAINER: Anagram (formed) of CAN OR TIN with an E (preservE finally) inserted (to hold).
12a Polishing some bars and ingots (7)
SANDING: The first lurker. It’s hidden in (some) the last three words.
13a Expressed arrogance of those due to succeed (5)
HEIRS: These people who will succeed as in inherit sound like (expressed) a word meaning arrogance, which is often followed by “and graces”.
15a Regularly sleep in, having guaranteed free time (7)
LEISURE: Alternate letters (regularly) from sLeEp In followed by a word meaning guaranteed. I could have done with a sleep in this morning!
17a Time ship worker set off (7)
TRIGGER: T(ime) followed by a guy who might be the one looks after the shrouds, stays, halyards, etc, on a sailing ship.
19a Place hollow elm in box and burn (7)
CREMATE: Take the middle letter out (hollow) of elm to leave EM. Insert that into (place . . . in) a large box.
21a Part is tempting embracing actress, say (7)
ARTISTE: Another lurker. It’s hidden in (embracing) the first three words.
22a Scene of depravity overlooking morals initially (5)
SODOM: First letters (initially) of the other five words.
27a Wasted time, aimed to be prompt (9)
IMMEDIATE: Anagram (wasted) of TIME AIMED.
28a Vacuous English politician facing vacuous Tory (5)
EMPTY: E(nglish) and the usual politician followed by TY (vacuous T(or)Y). I think this clue is trying to be a bit topical.
30a Attractive Democrat fit for office? (10)
DELECTABLE: D(emocrat) followed by a word meaning fit for office as in capable of being voted in.
1d Lifted ladle dropping end? Silly me! (4)
OOPS: Take another word for a ladle and remove the last letter (dropping end) and then reverse it (lifted in a down clue).
2d Left in saddle breaking runaway (9)
LANDSLIDE: Runaway as in runaway victory. It’s L(eft) followed by an anagram (breaking) of IN SADDLE. If their first half chances had been put away England might have had one of these..
3d Coach possibly coaches (5)
TRAIN: A word meaning “to coach” is also a word for a series of linked coaches on a railway track.
4d Lie concerned with Conservative policy (7)
RECLINE: Lie as in lie on a sofa not telling porkies. It’s the usual two letters for about followed by C(onservative) and a word for policy as in “toe the party ****”. That’s what I’m going to do when I’ve finished this blog.
5d Later today drunk takes refusal the wrong way (7)
TONIGHT: Take a word meaning drunk, no not pommers it’s an adjective not a noun, and insert (takes) a two letter refusal but it’s backwards (the wrong way).
7d Tiredness for all in unlimited sport (5)
ENNUI: The letter that denotes that a film is suitable for all to see is inserted into (in) the sport that’s going on today in London SW19 but without its first and last letters (unlimited).
8d Free, not having been booked (10)
UNRESERVED: This word meaning free could also describe a restaurant table which hasn’t been booked.
11d Sceptic hates it to be otherwise (7)
ATHEIST: Anagram (to be otherwise) of HATES IT.
14d Craftsman worked hard accepting need’s minute (10)
BLACKSMITH: You need a word for need’s (don’t forget the S) and an M(inute) and insert them into a word for worked, as in when an action policy began to have an effect it begins to ****, and an H(ard).
16d Rude man flashing, exposed (7)
UNARMED: Anagram (flashing) of RUDE MAN.
18d Talk purchasing posh drinks raised in bar (9)
GASTROPUB: A word meaning to talk has inserted (purchasing) a reversal (raised in a down clue) of the single letter for posh and some drinks of fortified wine. Hands up those who, like me, thought that the GAS at the beginning was the TALK, d’oh!
20d Sweetheart with partner harbouring a new issue (7)
EMANATE: E (swEet heart) followed by a sexual partner or just good friend with the A from the clue and N(ew) inserted (harbouring).
21d Article arrived comprising of French scholarly world (7)
ACADEME: Take an indefinite article and a word meaning arrived and insert the French word for OF.
23d Scraps of potato served up around meal’s starter (5)
DUMPS: Scraps as in gets rid of not little bits. You need a colloquial term for a potato, reverse it (served up in a down clue) and then insert an M (Meal’s starter).
25d Lifting one newspaper’s short title (5)
THEFT: Lifting as in taking without permission. It’s what the pink newspaper is commonly called. Nicely obscure definition.
26d Occasionally play Greek instrument (4)
LYRE: Alternate letters (occasionally) from PLAY GREEK.
A lot of very good stuff here but my podium is populated by the three political clues at 28a, 30a and 4d. I can’t believe that there’s a lie concerned with Conservative policy or that a politician could be vacuous.
(*) From The Meaning of Liff by Douglas Adams and John Lloyd:-
Duntish (adj): Mentally incapacitated by severe hangover.
Quick crossword pun: SHARE + PURSE + SPY = SHEPHERD’S PIE