Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28819
Hints and tips by pommers
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BD Rating – Difficulty *** – Enjoyment ****
Hola from the Vega Baja where the heat wave seems to have abated a little – it was only 32°C yesterday and it even rained a tad in the morning.
I suspect today’s setter is the same one as in my last blog two weeks ago. Similar quirky style which I quite enjoyed. Again it’s a little tricky in places if you’re not on the wavelength so I’ve given it three stars even though I actually solved it well within two star time. Last time the puzzle seemed to split the commentariat into two camps of tricky and benign so it will be interesting to see if the same is true this week.
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 Inconsiderate way, interrupting royal feasts regularly (10)
REGARDLESS: Start with a word meaning royal and follow with the alternate letters (regularly) from feasts (ESS) and insert (interrupting) an abbreviation of a way, not street but the other one. Unfortunately for me I spotted that the alternate letters from “royal feasts” gave RYLESS with the LESS being a suitable word ending. Took some checkers to show me my error, d’oh!
6a With father absconding, stops benefits (4)
USES: Take the usual two-letter father away (with father absconding) from the beginning of a word meaning stops temporarily.
10a Not prepared to invest in dodgy vendor in debt (9)
OVERDRAWN: A word meaning not prepared, as in uncooked, is inserted (to invest in) into an anagram (dodgy) of VENDOR. Hand’s up those who thought this would involve an IOU.
12a Understand and become wise about topics (3,3,7)
GET THE MESSAGE: A phrase (3,4) meaning to become wise goes around (about) some topics or subjects. I did try to parse PICTURE as the last word but couldn’t make it work.
14a Washing up single handedly, one might bear such a bloomer (8).
MARIGOLD: I think this is trying to be a sort of cryptic definition of what you might wear one of if you were washing up with just one hand. It’s usually seen in the plural as you wear one on each hand.
15a Shooter‘s plot is crushed (6)
PISTOL: Anagram (crushed) of PLOT IS. Short and sweet methinks.
17a Fellow barred from plane trips disembarks (6)
LIGHTS: A word for more than one trip in an aircraft has F(ellow) removed (barred from) the beginning.
21a Tasty-looking man we outright mauled (13)
MOUTHWATERING: Anagram (mauled) of MAN WE OUTRIGHT.
24a Stationery salesman with a huff about retiring (9)
NOTEPAPER: Stationery with an E is writing stuff. To get it you need the usual salesman, the A from the clue, another word for a huff or paddy and finally a two letter word for about. All you have to do now is reverse the lot (retiring).
25a Overpowering, like a boss? (5)
HEADY: A double definition with the second one a bit cryptic.
26a Last of cornflakes with mass of grains (4)
SAND: The last letter of snowflakes followed by a word meaning “with” gives the mass of grains found on a beach or in a desert perhaps. So, I’m a petrol head . . .
27a Torturous clue one saw explained (10)
ELUCIDATED: An anagram (torturous) of CLUE followed by I (one) and then a word meaning saw as in went out with.
1d Wine overturned in hurly-burly (4)
RUBY: This type of port wine is a reversed lurker (overturned in) in hurly-burly.
2d US farmer phoned European in centre of Belgrade (7)
GRANGER: The usual word for phoned and an E(uropean) inserted into GR (centre of belGRade). Never come across this US word for a farmer before but it was pretty clear from the wordplay.
3d Piranha furiously eating hosiery efficiently dealt with outfit (3,1,5,4)
RAN A TIGHT SHIP: An anagram (furiously) of PIRANHA with some hosiery inserted (eating).
4d See old husband entering bar as means of evasion (8)
LOOPHOLE: Start with a two-letter word meaning see or look then an O(ld). After that an H(usband) inserted (entering) into a bar or rod.
5d Way to cook small meal, starter of mussels (5)
STEAM: S(mall), an afternoon meal which may or may not be small and an M (starter of Mussels) give a way of cooking said mussels.
7d Blubbery creature atop insect creates sticky stuff (7)
SEALANT: A sea creature which may have blubber, not a whale, followed by (atop in a down clue) an insect often clued as a soldier.
8d Southern, apparently subterranean, English city (10)
SUNDERLAND: S(outhern) followed by a phrase (5,4) which might mean subterranean gives a city in NE England whose football team play in red and white stripes.
11d Recognised noble (13)
DISTINGUISHED: Double definition.
13d Ground in temple’s probed by minute gadgets (10)
IMPLEMENTS: An anagram (ground) of IN TEMPLE with M(inute) inserted (probed by).
16d Alternative to imperial guards leads to emperor’s overruling very fast (8)
METEORIC: An alternative to the Imperial system of measurement goes around (guards) the first letters (leads to) of Emperor’s Overruling. I tried to do something with DECIMAL and an E, d’oh!
18d Gorger and girl unfit, both disheartened with great weight (7)
GLUTTON: The first and last letters of both GirL and UnfiT (both disheartened) followed by a large weight.
20d Receiving no good, after bust implant (7)
ENGRAFT: You need an anagram (bust) of AFTER and insert (receiving) NG (no good).
22d Shock from thunderclap palpable (5)
APPAL: Another lurker. It’s hidden in (from) the last two words.
23d Dry head at intervals, having had shock treatment? (4)
DYED: Alternate letters (at intervals) from DRY HEAD give a word describing someone’s shock of hair if they had had treatment to hide the grey bits for example.
A fair bit of blue but favourite was 27a because of its relevance to the blog.
Quick crossword pun: PLACE + CRYPT = PLAY SCRIPT