Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29076
Hints and tips by pommers
+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +
BD Rating – Difficulty ** – Enjoyment ****
Hola from a not very summery Vega Baja. I thought summer had well and truly arrived after four days of over 30°C temperatures but then yesterday I had to get my long trousers out of the wardrobe again. Apparently normal service will be resumed by tomorrow.
I’m not sure who today’s setter is but if it’s proXimal then he’s definitely turned the wick down after his last couple. I really sped through this one and it very nearly came out as just a one star difficulty. It will be interesting to see if you all agree or whether I was just on top form this morning.
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.
5a Sale items from two Biblical figures (3,3)
JOB LOT: Each word of the answer is a figure from the bible. One had patience and the second one’s wife got herself turned into pillar of salt. I’m always a happy bunny when the first across clue goes straight in.
8a My poor dog’s nose! (8)
GOODNESS: Anagram (poor) of DOGS NOSE. Reminds me of an old joke.
9a Rascal, reportedly troubled, becomes stuck (7)
IMPALED: The usual rascally child followed by some letters which aren’t a word but if pronounced would sound like (reportedly) a word for troubled or was ill.
10a Mission appears in article by the French medic (5)
ALAMO: This is the famous mission at San Antonio, Texas where Davy Crockett and Jim Bowie were killed. It’s an indefinite article followed by a French definite article and finally one of the several two-letter medics.
11a Fish and fruit only (5,4)
LEMON SOLE: A citrus fruit followed by a word meaning only or alone.
13a Muddle involving right one in complex romantic situation? (8)
TRIANGLE: Take a word for a muddle or mix-up and insert (involving) an R(ight) and an I (one) to get a ménage a trios.
14a Redo it with revision this boss may require? (6)
EDITOR: Anagram (with revision) of REDO IT.
17a Unbeatable service from an expert (3)
ACE: An unbeatable service in tennis is also a word for an expert.
19a Loathe having to leave hospital, being worried (3)
ATE: Remove (to leave) an H(ospital) from a word meaning loathe.
20a British arrive at Split (6)
BREACH: B(ritish) followed by a word meaning to arrive at gives a word meaning split, which is falsely capitalised in the clue. Here’s the Split with the capital S . . .
23a Seaman to stray with the drink (8)
ABSINTHE: The drink that only ever turns up in crosswords is a charade of one of the usual sailors, a word meaning to stray or do wrong and lastly THE from the clue.
26a Drunken Biondello reveals pedigree (9)
BLOODLINE: Anagram (drunken . . . reveals) of BIONDELLO. For those, like me, who didn’t know Biondello is one of the characters in Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew. Here’s Prince Edward in the role.
28a Trunk route located in China or Taiwan (5)
AORTA: This main route for blood in your trunk or torso is lurking (located in) in the last three words of the clue.
29a Popular sauce is sent back, being dry (7)
INSIPID: Dry as in lacking spirit or boring. Start with the usual two letter word for popular and after it you need a word for a sauce or relish and the IS from the clue but they are reversed (sent back).
30a Having no idea — not like our solvers! (8)
CLUELESS: A cryptic definition of a word which certainly doesn’t apply to solvers of this puzzle, they have 32 of them. One of those that’s easier to solve than to hint.
1d Horrified scallywag has turned to bottle (6)
AGHAST: Another lurker. It’s hidden in (to bottle) scallywAG HAS Turned.
3d One to be out all night? Most unlikely! (9)
INSOMNIAC: Cryptic definition. Once you twig that to be out means to be fast asleep than all will become clear.
4d Each to secure three points in addition (2,4)
AS WELL: A word for each has three compass points inserted and is then split (2,4). Last time this came up it was something to do with a toff methinks.
6d Bold self-confidence seen in orchestra section (5)
BRASS: This section of an orchestra also means cheek or money in Yorkshire.
7d Miss ‘done with fashion’ (8)
OVERLOOK: A word meaning done or finished followed by a fashion or appearance.
15d Diligent cadet died after training (9)
DEDICATED: Anagram (after training) or CADET DIED.
16d Country songs sent up having limp content (3,5)
SRI LANKA: Take some songs and reverse them (sent up in a down clue). Into them you now need to insert a word meaning limp or lifeless (having . . . content).
18d Relaxing? It’s terrifying! (8)
CHILLING: Double definition.
21d Brown belt (3)
TAN: Another double definition.
22d No substitute for an appetiser (7)
STARTER: The first course of a meal could also be a person who isn’t a substitute as he was in the teams original line-up.
25d European Alps formed eastern pass (6)
ELAPSE: E(uropean) followed by an anagram (formed) of ALPS and finally E(astern).
27d Love, delightful, temporarily put aside (2,3)
ON ICE: Start with O (love), follow with a word meaning delightful, or at least pleasant, and split (2,4). For no other reason than I like it . . .
Quite a bit of blue today but that just shows they don’t have to be hard in order to be enjoyable. My favourite was the rather amusing 8a with 14a and 30a up there on the podium.
Quick crossword pun: WHEY + STAY + SHUN = WAY STATION